London, United Kingdom, 17 July 2018: AP Ventures today announces its launch as an independent venture capital fund to invest in applications for Platinum Group Metals (PGMs). Anglo American Platinum and South Africa’s Public Investment Corporation (PIC), as cornerstone investors, have each committed US$100 million to AP Ventures.
The newly created AP Ventures is the first fund of its kind investing in pioneering technologies and businesses harnessing the unique high performance characteristics of PGMs.
Anglo American Platinum is the world’s leading primary producer of PGMs and is expected to continue to provide AP Ventures with the benefit of industry expertise, market knowledge and access to international networks. The PIC is one of Africa’s largest investment managers, with assets totalling over US$160 billion, and through its extensive investment research expertise brings unrivalled insight to AP Ventures and its portfolio companies.
Commenting at the launch of AP Ventures, Andrew Hinkly, Managing Partner, said:
“The world needs solutions to global challenges such as renewable energy integration, resource scarcity and a growing global population. Technologies powered by PGMs are providing solutions to these problems in areas such as hydrogen infrastructure, fuel-cell electric mobility, water purification and medical devices.
AP Ventures is the only fund of its kind offering investors access to these innovative, fast-growing companies built on the unique properties of PGMs. Our experience and industry network, combined with the support of cornerstone investors Anglo American Platinum and PIC, means we have a high performing portfolio of existing investments as well as a strong pipeline of new opportunities.”
AP Ventures will operate a global mandate investing in companies that develop patentable technologies using PGMs.
The Fund will invest thematically in sectors which use PGMs to address global challenges such as renewable energy integration, resource scarcity and a growing population. This includes: hydrogen infrastructure; fuel-cell electric mobility; energy storage platforms; water purification; sensors; durable electronics; and medical devices.
AP Ventures is led by a specialist global investment team with proven expertise and a successful track record. The team previously formed part of Anglo American Platinum’s PGM Investment Programme which was first established in 2014. The Programme made US$60 million of early stage and growth capital investments. The PIC has been instrumental in ensuring AP Venture’s fund structure has the appropriate governance in place to attract ongoing funding.
Commenting on today’s announcement, Dr Daniel Matjila, Chief Executive Officer, Public Investment Corporation, said:
“Through our investment in the independent AP Ventures, the PIC is funding technology innovation and furthering demand for PGMs, which will ensure the industry has a sustainable future. As a leading global institutional investor, this investment further demonstrates our support of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. My view is this investment will stimulate and sustain the demand for PGMs in the long term, benefitting our clients and preserving the long term mineral wealth for all South Africans. In addition, the potential for localisation of these technologies in South Africa, contributes to sustaining jobs in the PGM mining sector and planning for creation of jobs in the manufacturing sectors. The PIC is already a significant investor in the platinum mining industry and regards the long-term sustainability of the industry as being critical to the long-term returns of its portfolios.”
Chris Griffith, CEO of Anglo American Platinum, added:
“The launch of AP Ventures is an exciting new development which will support the growth of PGM technologies and increase PGM demand. Developing the market for PGMs is a strategic priority for Anglo American Platinum and this investment with AP Ventures is firmly aligned to that priority. Having enjoyed success and built a strong track record as part of Anglo American Platinum’s PGM Investment Programme, we have taken the decision to separate the fund’s activities into an independent structure that will attract additional outside investment and allow AP Ventures to increase the scale of its activities.”
Headquartered in London, AP Ventures is committed to opening a further office in South Africa and to raise additional capital from other investors.
As part of Anglo American Platinum’s capital commitment to the independent Fund it will transfer the seed portfolio within its PGM Investment Programme to AP Ventures.
The existing portfolio includes investments in Altergy Systems, Food Freshness Technology Holdings, Greyrock Energy, HyET Holdings, Hydrogenius Technologies, Primus Power and United Hydrogen Group.