This TechNode Global Q&A is part of the ORIGIN Innovation Awards 2022 series. Quest Ventures is a winner of the Outstanding Ecosystem Leader: Venture Visionaries award.
In this TechNode Global Q&A with Michelle Ng, Head of Environmental, Social & Governance at Quest Ventures, and Director of the Sustainable Impact Accelerator, we learn how the VC firm is able to capture opportunities in its investments in Asia by being sector agnostic.
“My team runs the Sustainable Impact Accelerator (SIA) — Asia’s first VC-backed accelerator to support socially impactful startups. We are selecting 30 startups for funding of up to $1 million. At ‘The PurpoSE Agenda conference earlier in 2022, Senior Minister Tharman, highlighted the accelerator as a key initiative that will establish stronger capabilities in the social enterprise ecosystem in Singapore.”
According to Ng, Quest Ventures has an optimistic outlook on opportunities in Southeast Asia: “Quest Ventures continues to be bullish on the medium-term and long-term outlook of Southeast Asia.”
The VC firm is committed to supporting social impact startups through its Sustainable Impact Accelerator. “This year, we have been actively investing in startups in the sustainable impact (silver economy, healthcare, education), future of food, and the metaverse,” says Ng.
What differentiates ESG simply for compliance with doing ESG with the aim of true sustainability?
Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) have shifted to the forefront of most businesses as they recognize the urgency to address the risks and opportunities in ESG. Apart from reporting, businesses are incorporating ESG into people, products, and processes so that they may transition smoothly with the global economy that is sustainability-focused. Businesses are now internalizing these externalities into the cost of doing business to reflect the true cost so that ESG are no longer exploited for short-term financial/ commercial gains.
For investors, ESG are non-financial factors taken as part of their analysis process to identify material risks and growth opportunities. This ensures sustainable returns and impact for the portfolio.