Investcorp launches global blockchain investment fund from Abu Dhabi

The fund, eLydian Lion, will invest mainly in early-stage companies operating in the blockchain ecosystem

Investcorp. Courtesy Investcorp

Investcorp, the alternative asset manager that counts Mubadala Investment Company as its biggest shareholder, has launched the first dedicated institutional blockchain fund based in the GCC with a global investment mandate.

eLydian Lion, which will be led from Investcorp’s Abu Dhabi office, will be invest globally and focus on investments in companies leading the next digital evolution driven by blockchain technology, the company said on Monday.

The fund will enable investors to gain early exposure to the rapidly growing blockchain ecosystem, which is at the forefront of the digital transformation of the economy. It will mainly invest in early-stage companies operating in areas in the blockchain ecosystem such as blockchain infrastructure, platforms and exchanges, decentralised finance, and data analytics.

“Offering our clients innovative and bold investment ideas, backed by our disciplined and proven approach, has been a key element of our success over the last four decades,” said Hazem Ben-Gacem, co-chief executive at Investcorp.

“We have a strong track record in technology investment and will bring our institutional expertise and global reach to bear on this fast-growing area of technology.”

The new fund is independent of Investcorp Technology Partners, a European technology sector-focused unit of Investcorp that leads company's investment strategy focused on lower mid-market technology opportunities.

Established more than four decades ago, Investcorp has grown to become one of the leading alternative asset management companies in the region, investing across asset classes and geographies. The company went on an acquisition spree during the coronavirus pandemic to capitalise on lower asset valuations.

Investcorp, which has $40.4 billion in assets under management as of the end of 2021, including assets managed by third-parties, is looking to further diversify its investments by expanding its technology portfolio.

In September, Investcorp Technology Partners acquired international FinTech company MIR Limited, which operates payments platforms and offers e-wallet solutions.

Offering our clients innovative and bold investment ideas, backed by our disciplined and proven approach, has been a key element of our success over the last four decades
Hazem Ben-Gacem, co-chief executive, Investcorp

Blockchain technology and the ecosystem around it has the potential to transform every facet of our economy, much like the internet did in the 2000s, the company said.

"We have already seen the potential of blockchain to disrupt existing markets and create new ones, such as the meteoric rise of the non-fungible tokens market that in just a few years has grown from under a billion to more than $40bn," said Gilbert Kamieniecky, head of Investcorp’s technology private equity business.

"This new fund will support the most innovative entrepreneurs from around the world who are developing the blockchain ecosystem and defining what the future digital economy will be.”

Updated: April 11, 2022, 9:15 AM