Private equity firm STIC Investments is on track to raise money for its new 500 billion won ($451 million) blind-pool fund after it was recently awarded a PE mandate from Korea Development Bank (KDB), industry sources said on Wednesday (November 25).

STIC secured a PE mandate worth 70 billion won from KDB that will focus on investment opportunities in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) in line wth the South Korean government’s New Southern Policy, which aims for stronger ties with ASEAN economies. The company also was awarded a 45 billion won mandate from the Export-Import Bank of Korea for bio-health investments.

The PE firm, which is expected to accelerate its fundraising after securing anchor limited partner KDB, has had a solid track record in Asia since it started a $285 million fund focused on companies in China and Southeast Asia in 2018. The STIC Pan-Asia 4th Industry Growth (Pan-Asia) Fund has invested most of its committed capital just two years after the launch.

STIC acquired a minority stake in Chinese food service company Joyvio Group in partnership with SK Group through the Pan-Asia Fund. It also invested in Vietnam’s shrimp farming company Viet UC Seafood and India’s hyper-local delivery startup Dunzo.

The company increased the size of its new fund by 1.5 times. Domestic companies are expected to make capital commitments, as the fund plans to receive investments from five or six domestic companies to encourage more collaboration.

The new fund is expected to raise its targeted amount by the first half of 2021 if STIC manages to secure letters of commitment from two more investors by the end of this year. (Reporting by Hye-ran Kim)