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Acer seeking out investment targets via venture capital fund

TAIPEI -- Acer Inc. (宏碁) said Thursday it has established a venture capital fund to seek out long-term investments that will strengthen its technology development and promise good financial returns.

Acer founder Stan Shih (施振榮), who oversees the company's cloud computing strategy, said the Acer Venture Capital fund was approved by the board of directors in April this year. It manages more than NT$1 billion (US$33.5 million).

Acer has recruited a new executive from outside the company as the investment director for the fund who will take office on Sept. 1, Shih told reporters on the sidelines of an inauguration ceremony for the 11th Acer Digital Innovation Awards.

“Acer has failed to make sufficient long-term investments over the past 10 years, leading to the difficulties we are facing today,” the 70-year-old industry veteran said.

With the aim of jointly developing new technologies and sharing market risks, the fund is making assessments of appropriate investment targets that can generate good financial returns in the future, and final decisions are expected by the end of this year, Shih said.

In early August, Acer reported a net profit for the April-June quarter, its second consecutive quarter in the black, thanks to positive results of its turnaround plans launched in November last year.

The company's consolidated revenue fell in 2013 by an annual 16.2 percent to NT$360.13 billion, and it posted a loss per share of NT$7.54.

The struggling PC maker attributed its weak performance last year to an intangible asset impairment loss of NT$9.94 billion, an inventory write-off of NT$3.18 billion and workforce reduction charges of NT$1.02 billion.

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