On Tuesday, the Ministry of Information Technology and Telecommunications (MoITT) and its technology innovation arm, Ignite (National Technology Fund), launched Pak Impact Invest, the first national investment platform that is expected to open new avenues for start-up investment.
Syed Aminul Haque, Federal Minister for IT and Telecom, Shoaib Ahmad Siddiqui, Federal Secretary for IT and Telecom, Asim Shahryar Husain, CEO of Ignite, senior officials of the Ministry of IT, Ignite and Accelerate Prosperity, participated in the event.
A joint initiative of the Aga Khan Foundation (AKF) and Industrial Promotion Services is Accelerate Prosperity (AP) (IPS).
AP will support MoITT and Ignite as a technical advisory partner for the co-design and launch of Pak Impact Invest, which will be Pakistan’s first national investment platform, as part of the MoU between AP and Ignite.
In the future, it will open up new opportunities for investment in start-ups graduating from Ignite-Funded National Incubation Centres (NICs) and other Pakistani start-ups.
Investments from public sector programmes, private sector groups, investment houses, venture funds, and philanthropists are raised by Accelerate Prosperity.
Speaking on the occasion, Syed Aminul Haque, Federal Minister of IT and Telecom, said that access to early stage and growth phase capital is one of the key challenges for our new technology-based startups.
“I am sure that this initiative will effectively bridge the gap. “This partnership between Ignite and AP looks promising to solve the funding challenge facing our startups,” he added.
Haque said the overall environment is improving in the country.
Bykea, one of the NIC Karachi-accelerated startups, has raised $21 million in Series B funding.
In Pakistani Startup, a total of 122 deals worth $178 million were made from 2015-2020, including another 19 deals with undisclosed amounts. This brings the number of total deals to 141.
Ignite and AP’s collaborative efforts to enter into a meaningful partnership that will create the right leeway for young tech companies to scale up were appreciated by the federal IT minister.
Shoaib Ahmad Siddiqui also appreciated Ignite and AP’s collaborative efforts to enter into a meaningful partnership that will create the right launch pad to scale up for young tech companies.
CEO Ignite stated that so far, 272 start-ups have graduated with a total investment commitment of Rs8 billion and cumulative revenue of Rs3 billion from Ignite’s National Incubation Centers.
More than 100,000 new jobs have been created by these nascent companies and these numbers quantify the achievements of our five incubators in a short span of time.
He added that Ignite is planning vertical incubators and accelerators in the future to boost Pakistan’s start-up ecosystem.
The platform will be the first of its kind and will seek to bridge the gap between entrepreneurs and all types of national and international investors, including business and impact investors, donors and philanthropists.
The MoITT and Ignite will invite various investors, donors and other investment/financial institutions to participate in the platform to consider business opportunities for financing, investments, supply chain commitments, networking, etc.
It will be open to qualifying start-ups across Pakistan from all NICs and AP incubated and accelerated enterprises.
Under Pak Impact Invest, first grand national pitching session of top 25-30 startups selected from all NICs and AP accelerated companies will be held in the last week of March 2021.