An Irish investment company has raised more than €20 million to invest in technology companies from Ireland.
The Impact Ireland Fund aims to raise more than €100 million in total and take strategic stakes in around 15 Irish companies with high growth potential and the fund will invest between €1 million and €25 million in the companies.
Dublin-based equity firm VentureWave Capital launched the fund and U2's Adam Clayton and the Edge have reportedly backed the first round of investment.
The fund will focus on cloud-based technology companies in sectors including education, healthcare, food and agriculture, energy and the environment.
Former Taoiseach Enda Kenny is chairing the fund's Global Advisory Council, which will provide expertise and work with VentureWave Capital to promote Ireland as a center of innovation and investment.
Kenny said: "I am very pleased to Chair Impact Ireland's Global Advisory Council. It will be a powerful corps of advocates for developing the next generation of successful Irish businesses and accelerating the impact that they will have."
VentureWave capital is headed by Chairman Alan Foy and Managing Partner Kieran McLoughlin, who served as the New York-based Chief Executive of the Ireland Funds until 2018.
Investors in the fund include distinguished entrepreneurs, corporate leaders and philanthropists from both Ireland’s diaspora and at home.
McLoughlin said that the fund will be focusing on Irish businesses that benefit society in Ireland.
"We are delighted to launch Impact Ireland with its focus on supporting highly scalable companies which benefit society from one of the best investment global locations there is, Ireland.
"We are privileged to be able to draw on the experience and insights of such a remarkable group of people in the Global Advisory Council, especially in promoting Ireland."
A second round of funding is currently underway and The Impact Ireland Fund is currently negotiating with institutions and individuals with a high net worth to raise additional funds.
The fund is a member of New York-based non-profit Global Impact Investing Network and is the first Irish signatory of the World Bank's International Finance Corporation's Operating Principles for Impact Measurement, which measures the social benefit of an investment.