KUALA LUMPUR, 8 OCTOBER 2013 — The Malaysian Business Angels Network (MBAN) has signed a memorandum of understanding with The European Business Angels Network (EBAN) to further support the development of angel investors in Malaysia and Europe.
Under the MOU, both parties will cooperate to encourage more high net-worth individuals from the private sector to play an active role in helping budding entrepreneurs build up their business ventures.
Ari Korhonen, EBAN vice-president said the partnership would allow EBAN to share what they have observed in Malaysia with their members in Europe adding that this can be a platform to share best practices with the aim of strengthening and expanding the business angels’ network.
“Some countries in Europe have just taken their first steps in creating a network of business angel investors so armed with the lessons we learned here, we are well-equipped in educating them on initiatives that would work to encourage more people to take up the vocation of being an angel investor,” Korhonen said.
Luis Galveias, director of the EBAN Secretariat added that EBAN is very impressed with the Malaysian Angel Tax Incentive, a one-to-one tax deduction of up to RM500,000 a year given to Malaysian angel investors.
Describing the tax incentive as the strongest in the world, Galveias said it can be a benchmark for other similar initiatives to attract more angel investors.
“Angel investing is a risky business and incentives are really good to allay any initial fears first-time angels might have,” he said.
EBAN has also had similar partnerships with business angels networks in the United States, Canada, Brazil, Australia and New Zealand.
Nazrin Hassan, Cradle Fund Sdn Bhd chief executive officer and MBAN interim chairman is delighted that MBAN is collaborating with EBAN and hopes MBAN can leverage on the European organisation’s expertise in order to encourage more angel investors to come on board.
“We hope to work more closely with EBAN so that we can mutually support the developments of angel investor activities in Malaysia and Europe and perhaps, eventually encourage co-investments by European angels together with Malaysian angels, in domestic technology start-ups,” he said.
Korhonen and Galveias participated in a two-day workshop with investors organised by Cradle, Angels Den Asia and EBAN member, the European Union – Malaysia Chamber of Commerce and Industry (EUMCCI), with the cooperation of the British High Commission Kuala Lumpur.
EBAN was established 13 years ago and has over 100 member organisations in 28 European nations.
MBAN, which Cradle kicked-off in December last year, has received 15 applications from Malaysians that hope to be accredited as angel investors.