26 – 100 in alphabetical order: Ankur Kamalia, DB1 Ventures and Christoph Hansmeyer, Deutsche Börse

Ankur Kamalia joined and set up DB1 Ventures, Germany-based stock exchange Deutsche Börse’s corporate venturing unit, as managing director and head of group venture portfolio management. However, he is about to leave to begin his own entrepreneurial journey.

During his time at the unit, he put together the team responsible for managing all of the minority strategic investments.

Kamalia is succeeded by Christoph Hansmeyer who joined Deutsche Börse Group in April last year and reports directly to the new chief executive Theodor Weimer who joined the group in early 2018.

Hansmeyer oversees group strategy and mergers and acquisitions and acts as chief of staff to the CEO and is responsible for the corporate and chairman’s office. Since November 2018, he additionally leads the group venture portfolio management team.

Kamalia said: “The single biggest risk to young CVC units tends to be a meaningful shift in parent management or strategic priorities. It is also critical to continue to deliver both strategic and financial value to the firm. DBG went through a meaningful transition in management from 2017 through to the end of 2018.”

“Obtaining not only the support of the new group CEO but also his further validation, where we increased our balance sheet commitment by an additional €100m was a highlight.

“We continued to deploy capital in 2018, including in HQLAx, a blockchain-based collateral platform, and LMRKTS, a compression technology firm and continued to increase our investment in existing portfolio companies such as Trumid, Figo and Illuminate.

“We continue to positively discuss with the DBG management the forward pathway for DB1 Ventures to help scale it further. Our investments which typically have centred in the early and growth stage – more towards growth and expansion recently – and focused on enterprise financial technology and the underlying technology rails supporting financial markets, are geographically diverse with investments in the US, the UK, Germany, Luxembourg, India and Taiwan.

“We have co-invested with a diverse and large group of both financial VCs and CVCs.”

Over the past three years, DB1 Ventures has established the group globally as a well-respected and known strategic investor in the fintech area thanks to its investment activities – thus far nine direct investments and three indirect fund investments.

Kamalia said the team played a key role in forming partnerships with portfolio companies. “The team has continued to deliver value-add in strategic and financial terms. From a strategic perspective, we have entered into multiple partnerships with our portfolio companies – for example, onboarding Trifacta as a core solution for data management in our data lab, and acting as a core client advocate; jointly evaluating opportunities in Europe with Trumid, a US-based new electronic corporate bond trading platform; or indeed our latest investment in a platform called HQLAx, where we are helping them build, in partnership with R3 and multiple banks, a new digital platform to facilitate the transfer of HQLAs on a DLT based platform.”

Furthermore, the unit generated financial returns, too. “From a financial perspective, since we were established, we have returned back €350m of capital through monetisation events on assets with minority holdings which were entrusted to the team in late 2015; this is relative to the approximate €280m in assets and cash paid in to our activities for a total of 19 portfolio companies the team has managed over the past three years. We continue to manage a portfolio of 14 assets, all minority holdings, in areas which are strategically core or adjacent to DBG’s business for a realised and unrealised internal rate of return of 57% – including the exited assets – over the last three years.”

Before joining Deutsche Börse Group, Hansmeyer spent five years at Germany-based insurance and asset management group Allianz, most recently acting as head of group strategy. Before that, he had worked for 12 years in the financial institutions group at investment banking firm Goldman Sachs, with postings to Frankfurt, New York and London.

Kamalia, on the other hand, came to Deutsche Börse from family office WWA in Singapore where he spent nearly two years after completing a fourteen-year stint at investment banking firm UBS in HongKong, New York, Singapore and London in corporate finance and as head of global strategy for the investment bank. He also worked as a portfolio manager for Polygon running its Asia-Pacific private investments and convertible bond businesses.