PNB-INSPiRE Ethical Fund 1 Investment Business Limited Liability Partnership

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ASEAN × Muslim

A Shariah-compliant Fund
to incorporate Asian growth into Japan.

The Fund fosters small to medium Japanese enterprises that have potential to succeed in the international market, with the aim to further drive these businesses and contribute into Japanese industry which has reached maturity.

Fund Prospectus

With the collaboration of PNB Group; the largest Malaysian Investment institution
For deployment of the ASEAN and the Islamic market

Along with the economic growth in the ASEAN market since the founding of the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) in 2015, the Islamic consumer market of 18 million people has achieved a remarkable growth of more than 200 billion yen. The fund aspires to support small to medium Japanese companies to access the market starting from Malaysia which has potential to bring about mutual growth.

The Fund membership includes local banks such as Oita Bank, Ogaki Kyoritsu Bank, Shiga Bank, The Eighteenth Bank, Shonai Bank, Chikuho Bank, Tohoku Bank, Hiroshima Bank, Michinoku Bank and supports each bank to assist their customers with overseas business development.

  • Capability 1
    Investment and Practical Support
    INSPiRE’s know-how of scenario-based business development through long years of experience in fund management, with investees we examine how Asia grows and provide investment and practical support.
  • Capability 2
    Business Development in Asia
    Alliances and Collaborations
    PNB as the largest Malaysian investment institution is a place where numerous listed enterprises and potent companies participate. The fund is able to support the investees to build alliances and collaborations in Malaysia.
  • Capability 3
    Advance into the Islamic Market
    Japan’s first Shariah-compliant Fund retains the Shariah Advisory Board to align with PNB. It seeks ways for investees to optimize and advance into the Islamic Market such as meeting with Halal certification requirements.

About PNB – the largest Malaysian investment institution

The largest Malaysian investment institution that has been contributing in economic growth through equity investment and in industry creation to the country since the Mahathir administration.

PNB receives capital participations from Sime Darby, a major Malaysia-based multinational conglomerate, and Maybank, the largest Malaysian universal bank in ASEAN and so on.

The group runs joint ventures and works closely with Japanese companies such as Toyota and NEC.

The largest Malaysian universal bank in ASEAN
Sime Darby
The biggest plantation company in the world, including property, motors, industrial, energy and healthcare sectors
Motors, facilities, manufacturing, engineering, oil/gas business
NCB Holdings
The largest local courier
Chemical Co Malaysia
The largest local chemical/pharmaceutical firm
investment, reinsurance, Takaful business

About the Malaysian Market

ASEAN and Islamic markets
Malaysia, full of potential

With a per capita GDP exceeding $10,000, Malaysia is expected to be a promising country that has the following potentials to: 1) become an innovation leader in ASEAN, 2) have an appropriately sized market, and 3) leverage through diversity in ethnic groups and economic spheres.

Along with the economic growth, an increase of the middle class has led them to become the dominant proportion of the population. Also, the average age will be 28.9 in 2020, it is expected the consumption power continues to grow.

Why Malaysia Now?

Malaysia’s outstanding economic growth has brought on a rapid increase of the upper-middle class, which will occupy more than 87% of the population by 2020. Once the country was a hub of manufacturing or branch offices, now it’s becoming an attractive consumer market with high demand for quality.

GDP per capita of ASEAN countries
Trends in types of businesses advanced into Malaysia over the past 30 years
First Wave
Early to Late 1980s
Given Malaysia’s low-cost labor, major manufacturers moved their production hub from Japan to Malaysia.
Second Wave
Late 1980s to Mid-1990s
Small to medium-sized subcontracted supply manufacturers advanced into the market in the wake of the first wave.
Third Wave
Mid-1990s to Mid-2000s
Following to serve the first and second waves, the companies in finance, transportation and warehousing, telecommunication, construction, logistics, engineering, public relations, and printing industries grew in Malaysia.
Fourth Wave
Mid-2000s to Present
With accelerated upturn in consumption and purchasing power of Malaysia, industries such as restaurant, wholesale and retailing, education, beauty and medical, entertainment, software development, designing and other services have begun to emerge.

About Partnership

Business Development Support by the Fund partnership

INSPiRE’s mission is to develop businesses, and since its founding we have provided parallel supports in investing to venture companies and starting new projects for large enterprises.

We have inspired values into businesses that can lead innovation through the development of a business growth scenario that combines their strengths with our know-how, or even through arranging alliance between venture businesses and larger enterprises.

In this Fund we emphasize building alliances between companies, such as business partnership and capital participation. Through alliances built not only within PNB but also in extended areas originating from Malaysia, we will continue supporting business start-ups in Asia.

We will create new international businesses nationwide by supporting small to medium companies with potential, rooted in the community that has connections with the eleven member banks.



ABEJA is a breakthrough AI technology company promoting in very early phase “deep learning”, the technology used for ‘feature quantity extraction’ that automatically detects features properly representing selected data from big data without human intervention.

Currently, the company is working on providing innovative services promoting efficiency and automation of businesses in various industries and scenes.

Plus One Marketing Ltd.

Known for the Freetel brand and started in Japan as a vertical integrator: manufacturer of SIM-free mobile devices, MVNO telecommunication provider, and application developer.

The company has full lineups to design and manufacture mobile devices and expands its business domain to the U.S., South-east and Middle-east Asia.

Origin Wireless Inc.

A venture company started in Seattle is featured by its advanced wireless technology using physics of time-reversal processing.

The technology detects the precise position of indoor objects and will be applicable to various industries.

Shichiyo Co.,Ltd

A commercial oven manufacturer established in 1973 in Fukuoka.

Nanban and Backen are highly desirable commercial ovens among confectioners.

Shichiyo in recent years has provided frozen dough for confection companies that face insufficient human resources.

In 2017 Shichiyo established a joint venture company with PT Kapal Api Global who has more than 60% market share in coffee bean distribution in Indonesia, aiming to produce frozen dough for the Indonesian and ASEAN markets.

Microwave Chemical Co.,Ltd.

A venture from Osaka University introduced new energy transfer methods and brought on a revolution in the chemical industry that has been stagnant for almost 100 years.

This technology can be applied to an increasing variety of chemical manufacturing processes due to understanding their specific needs.

After a period of investment from PIEF, the company plans to expand into ASEAN where raw materials for chemical products are abundant.

MARUBISHI Ingredients & Equipments Sdn. Bhd.

Based in Mashiki-machi, Kumamoto, this distributer is the top confectionery and bakery in the Kyushu district.

PIEF investment was made to Malaysian subsidiary and its business is expanding into Asia.

This made MARUBASHI into a catalyst for the boom in the bakery and confectionary market quality.