We focus exclusively on financial services in Asia. We understand there is a severe lack of credit in our part of the world. There are no credit bureaus or ratings in many countries and traditional banks are unable or unwilling to lend to small businesses and consumers. They tend to focus on secured consumer lending and serving the needs of large corporations. As a result, for instance, formal household debt in the Philippines is only 9% of GDP. Each day over 1 million Filipinos visit pawnshops. This leaves a growing segment of entrepreneurs often unable to grow their businesses and individuals unable to finance their ambitions. We invest in, grow and build businesses which provide financial services to those neglected by traditional banks.
We invest across business development stages. No matter where the business is in its development (from a 60 year old bank to a not-yet incorporated start-up), we believe we can add value. We help entrepreneurs implement their innovative ideas to build disruptive businesses. We work together with management teams and local partners to solve problems and accelerate growth. In all of our investments, we believe in utilizing technology to improve processes and efficiency.
We are committed to our partners. We invest only with management teams and entrepreneurs who are receptive to strategic partnership and share our views. We are extremely hands on with our portfolio companies. We are generous with our time and committed to introduce our portfolio companies to our network. We strongly believe in building and maintaining long-term relationships.
We are driven by returns, not assets under management. We strongly believe that the right opportunity attracts capital. We have no problem saying “no” to entrepreneurs with great businesses who do not share our views on partnership, transparency and governance. We will not make new investments unless we have the same high conviction as our existing investments.