HSBC on Wednesday (Mar 27) said it is setting up a US$1 billion growth fund called ASEAN Growth Fund that provides lending to companies that are scaling up via digital platforms across Southeast Asia.

The London-headquartered bank is tapping into Southeast Asia’s digital economy, which it said is among the world’s fastest-growing, expecting it to hit US$600 billion in value by the end of the decade from US$218 billion last year.

“With a working population that is digitally native, increasing in size, and poised to consume more goods and services especially on e-commerce, ASEAN has so much potential for growth,” said Amanda Murphy, HSBC’s South and Southeast Asia head of commercial banking, at the launch of the fund.

Besides the US$1 billion lending fund, HSBC also launched a US$150 million venture debt fund dedicated to the Singapore market, to provide financing to companies in the city-state that are backed by venture capital or private equity firms.

Source: Reuters