Ethos Invest launches Shariah vehicle with GBP1bn target

Islamic Finance

UK-based Ethos Invest has launched a vehicle set to become the world’s largest shariah compliant tech-focused private equity fund, with a fundraise target of GBP1 billion.

The aim is to invest in the wider and growing ESG and ethical market in a Shariah value-based way that 'furthers financial inclusion in the UK'.

“SMEs with strong ethical credentials are vital as we look towards a brighter future for the global economy and ensuring that these companies have access to capital is key,” said Dr Quintan Wiktorowicz, partner at Ethos Invest.  
 
The fund will make sharia-based, ethical investments in SMEs in the UK, Europe, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the wider MENA region, Southeast Asia and North America.

Launched by UK-based Ethos Invest, a firm focusing on financial services, fintech, life sciences and healthcare, the Al Inma Investment Company, BMO Global Asset Management’s private equity team and Vistra, who serve as the fund’s administrator.
 
Hamish Mair, MD and head of private equity at BMO Global Asset Management, commented: “The ethical and sharia-compliant goals of the fund, and the resulting portfolio of investments thereof, will be a natural extension of BMO Global Asset Management’s well established ESG-oriented investment approach.
 
The fund will look at innovators in financial services including banking, asset management, payments and other technology areas to include blockchain, robotics and artificial intelligence, cyber security, life sciences and healthcare, among other verticals.
 
The majority of capital will be deployed in the UK with additional investments in Europe, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the wider MENA region, Southeast Asia and North America.
 
According to Abdullah Medallah at Abdullah Medallah & Co LLP who acted as a legal counsel, the fund’s uniqueness lies in the fact that it bridges the gap for private equity funds between the UK and other Islamic countries, including Saudi Arabia.