Dialog Axiata PLC, Sri Lanka’s premier connectivity provider, has selected new media platform, Roar, insurance broker, InsureMe and integrated healthcare platform MyDoctor.lk as its first phase of investments. The Digital Innovation Fund managed by BOV Capital, marks a definitive shift to foster startups and build further on the business capabilities of digital technology and talent within the country.
The Rs. 2.3 billion Digital Innovation Fund was debuted by the Malaysian Prime Minister in December 2017, and invests in growth stage Sri Lankan digital startups, with investments ranging between Rs. 50 million and Rs. 200 million. 20 percent of the total fund has also been set aside for investments in early stage or seed startups, particularly those looking for investments less than Rs. 40 million.
The initial screening by BOV Capital considers several factors including revenues, user traction and scalability and includes a comprehensive study of the business model. Subsequently, the startups are approved by the Investment Committee of the Digital Innovation Fund, for further evaluation prior to awarding the funding.
Signaling the next step for the Digital Innovation Fund, Prajeeth Balasubramaniam, Co-founder, BOV Capital said, “We see a lot of potential for digital startups in the areas of Fin Tech, Health Tech, Edutainment, IoT and Media/Ad Tech. Since Dialog has provided the initial investment, we are focusing on finding and engaging with charismatic entrepreneurs who have a ‘can do’ attitude and those with a well-thought-out business plan, who are ready to go after the next big thing.”
The Digital Innovation Fund is looking to attract sector-agnostic digital startups that disrupt or transform industries, or create new sectors, in fields such as Big Data, AI, etc. Proposals for funding should include a business plan or investor deck, to be submitted via the Digital Innovation Fund’s website at www.dif.lk.