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Euromoney, November 19 2018

The fund is deploying $1 billion of the Chinese group’s money into digital medicine and fintech around the world, but profit is not its main ambition.

In the increasingly crowded field of home-grown Chinese private equity and venture capital, one member of the throng is doing its own thing.

Ping An Global Voyager is a $1 billion fund whose number-one priority is not its returns.

“I’m not going to be a very popular fellow if we don’t deliver a reasonable return on Ping An and [founder] Peter Ma’s dollars,” says Jonathan Larsen, chairman and chief executive of the fund and chief innovation officer across the whole Ping An group.

“But financial return is not the primary criteria. The objective is much more than that.”

Instead, Larsen says, the objective is “a way of extending Ping An’s access to capabilities.”

It is principally about buying its way into emerging innovation outside China and bringing that expertise back for the group to assimilate and build upon.  “We do a lot of internal R&D, but there is an enormous amount of innovation going on, in fintech and digital health in particular,” he says.

Those two fields are the priority of the fund, which launched last year with $1 billion to deploy.

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Chris Wright
Chris Wright
Chris is a journalist specialising in business and financial journalism across Asia, Australia and the Middle East. He is Asia editor for Euromoney magazine and has written for publications including the Financial Times, Institutional Investor, Forbes, Asiamoney, the Australian Financial Review, Discovery Channel Magazine, Qantas: The Australian Way and BRW. He is the author of No More Worlds to Conquer, published by HarperCollins.

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