Private equity firm ABC World Asia boosts impact credentials with new appointments

The appointments reflect the firm's aims to deliver positive impact as well as financial returns, founder says.

Sugandhi Matta, chief impact officer, ABC World Asia
Sugandhi Matta, chief impact officer, ABC World Asia. Image: ABC World Asia

Singapore-based Asia impact investor ABC World Asia has appointed Tan Shao Ming and Sugandhi Matta as chief investment officer and chief impact officer, respectively.

In the newly established roles, Tan and Matta will maintain the company’s “disciplined investment posture overlaid with our impact lens,” said David Heng, founder and chief executive, ABC World Asia.

“As our investing capacity scales, we will continue to identify and support more companies in Asia in transforming impact potential into measurable positive outcomes for the community and our investors,” Heng said.

Tan Shao Ming, CIO, ABC World Asia

Tan Shao Ming, chief investment officer, ABC World Asia. Image: ABC World Asia

Tan was previously managing director at ABC World Asia, leading investments that addressed challenges such as climate change, financial inequality, and healthcare access. He has over two decades of institutional investing experience, starting his career at Singapore state investor, Temasek.

Matta joined ABC World Asia at its inception in 2019 as managing director. With over 16 years of investing experience in South and Southeast Asia, Matta was formerly with Leapfrog Investments, a global impact investment group. Matta started her investing career at Temasek, focusing on the financial services sector.

“By assessing, measuring, and managing the impact of our investments in a disciplined manner, we can contribute to the growing pool of on-the-ground impact data from our portfolio companies,” Matta told Eco-Business. “This will further support our work as we put more capital towards addressing Asia’s pressing social and environmental challenges.”

Established in May 2019, ABC World Asia’s first fund (S$405 million) was closed in October 2019. Its investors include Temasek Trust, Temasek, Pavilion Capital, Mapletree Investments, Seatown Holdings, Sembcorp Industries, and Singapore Power. The company commenced investing in 2020.

The fund focusses on five principal themes - climate change and water solutions, financial and digital inclusion, better healthcare and education, sustainable food and agriculture, and smart and liveable cities, which are aligned to the United Nation’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals. 

The impact investor has six companies in its portfolio to date in countries including Singapore, China, Vietnam, India, and Australia.

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