RIYADH: Financial advisory firm China Renaissance, which operates in multiple areas such as investment banking, investment management and wealth management, has strong plans to expand its presence in the Middle East, as it plans to fund startups, according to its CEO.
In an exclusive interview with Arab News, Fan Bao, Founder, CEO and Chairman of China Renaissance shared his future plans for investing in the region and made it clear that the company does not want to be an adventurous tourist in the Middle East, because the company wants to assert its physical presence before financing.
“We don’t want to be an adventurous tourist here. I want to emphasize that this is a long-term commitment. We must have a presence. We should hire a local team. Ultimately, it’s the homegrown talent who will have the best opportunity to seize the opportunity here. It takes time to train and raise them. But ultimately it’s all about location,” Bao told Arab News.
He added: “We are not a venture capitalist. We prefer to invest in companies with a good track record in terms of product, customer engagement and market wisdom. »
Bao, however, did not reveal when exactly China Renaissance will make the investments in the region.
“I cannot give a precise timetable. It is very difficult to set a goal as an investor. But on the other hand, I’m very curious and very interested in this region,” he said.
Bao added that China Renaissance should conduct thorough research before making investments in any region.
“The first step is research. The second part is to talk to the right people who are knowledgeable. And the third is obviously the construction of the local network. For us to find deals, we definitely need this network,” he added.
Bao also praised the policies of the Saudi government and added that China has also experienced a similar industrial transformation in the past.
“I have the impression that the market has evolved. I can really feel the energy. There have been major changes in government policies and directions. Vision 2030 is very impressive. China also went through the same process, a similar type of new Chinese economy industrialization,” he said.
During the interview, he revealed that China has a crucial role to play in the region, not only as an exporter of finished products, but also in terms of “knowledge and technology transfer”.
Talking about his FinTech investment plans in the region, Bao revealed that he is seeing new opportunities in the Middle East.
“FinTech seems to have great potential. It has the best opportunity when the legacy financial system is not efficient. I think there is a real opportunity for this region to build a FinTech industry that goes beyond traditional models,” Bao said.