New Zealand government-created New Zealand Venture Investment Firm is being reviewed by the minister of economic development as Franceska Banga, chief executive, steps down.

Franceska Banga, chief executive of the New Zealand Venture Investment Fund (NZVIF) will step down this month following 15 years at the head of the organisation, according to the NZ Herald.

During her time with the fund, she has led the investment of NZ$150m ($102m) in more than 190 startups and early-stage companies.

NZVIF was created by the government of New Zealand in 2001 to invest in New Zealand-originated technology companies. The firm has NZ$300m in funds under management, split across a NZ$260m VC fund of funds and a NZ$40m seed co-investment fund.

Steven Joyce, minister of economic development in New Zealand, is using the change in leadership to review the fund’s performance and assess its structure.

Banga said: “We have always said that it is a 25-year game plan so I think we have made pretty good progress – we have probably got another ten years to run. When you look to other countries – and the US is the standout – we know that when they started out almost 50 years ago now… it takes a long time to build an ecosystem.”

Joyce said: “The early-stage capital market was certainly not as healthy before NZVIF was there. It does not necessarily mean that NZVIF has catalysed that although I think the presumption is that it has. The hard part is working out what would have happened anyway.”

– Image courtesy of NZVIF