Quest Ventures announces the promotion of two female investors in its international investment team with one of them heading up the Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) focus.
Michelle Ng is promoted to Head of ESG, and concurrently, Director of the Sustainable Impact Accelerator.
Ng has been with Quest Ventures since 2020 and drives its focus on emerging markets in Vietnam and Central Asia. She formerly headed the internationalization focus at the Action Community for Entrepreneurship – the national trade association for startups in Singapore – and was with CNBC Asia prior to ACE. She holds key office bearer positions in grassroots committees and non-profit organizations such as Social Impact Catalyst.
Ng said, “Total ESG assets in Asia have grown from a mere USD 801 million in 2019 to USD 7.9 billion in 2020, and global ESG assets are on track to exceed USD 53 trillion by 2025. Investors have realized that people and social impact form the basis of ESG investing, and will no longer be considered in isolation from environmental and governance aspects. Concerted efforts from the private and public sector will hasten the integration of the social, technology, and finance sectors in order to help socially-impactful enterprises scale further and faster.”
James Tan, Managing Partner at Quest Ventures, said, “Michelle’s thought leadership in the areas of sustainability and emerging economies have seen her recognized by third parties as an Emerging Thought Leader in 2021. As the first Asia-based venture firm to recognize the importance of ESG back in 2018, Quest Ventures is now doubling down on our ESG efforts, and looks forward to Michelle driving our sustainable impact forward.”
Gwen Sim is promoted to Associate.
Sim covers Southeast Asia with a focus on the key markets of Indonesia and The Philippines at Quest Ventures. She is an NUS Overseas College New York alumni and was formerly with Burda Principal Investments and Havas Media. She drives the firm’s Gen Z investment thesis and is a frequently sought after speaker on this topic.
Sim said, “Southeast Asia’s startup ecosystem has seen a lack of females with only 17.2% of VC-backed startups female-led. While the industry has been working to improve the balance, more deliberate efforts to include diversity of thought, and to be conscious of any deep rooted biases when making investment decisions, will be key to uplifting the entire ecosystem.”
Tan said, “Gwen’s infectious optimism for the future provides a unique lens on the possibilities of technology combined with capital. Southeast Asia’s most important consumer segment – Gen Z – now has an advocate in smart capital.”
Tan concluded, “These promotions continue our commitment to talent renewal and female leadership. With 37% of our portfolio companies led by female founders, we look forward to both Michelle and Gwen making a positive impact with their expanded roles.”