Category: Southeast Asia

Gogoro will go public on Nasdaq after $2.35B SPAC deal



Gogoro is going public. The company, which is best known for its electric Smartscooters and swappable battery infrastructure, announced today it will list on Nasdaq through a merger with Poema Global, a SPAC affiliated with Princeville Capital. The deal sets Gogoro’s enterprise valuation at $2.35 billion and is targeted to close in the first quarter of 2022. The combined company will be known as Gogoro Inc and trade under the symbol GGR.

Assuming no redemptions, Gogoro anticipates making $550 million in proceeds, including an oversubscribed PIPE (private investment in public equity) of over $250 million and $345 million held in trust by Poema Global. Investors in the PIPE include strategic partners like Hon Hai (Foxconn) Technology Group and GoTo, the Indonesian tech giant created through the merger of Gojek and Tokopedia, and new and existing investors like Generation Investment Management, Taiwan’s National Development Fund, Temasek and Dr. Samuel Yin of Ruentex Group, Gogoro’s founding investor.

The capital will be used on Gogoro’s expansion in China, India and Southeast Asia and further development of its tech ecosystem.

Founded ten years ago in Taiwan, Gogoro’s technology includes smart swappable batteries and their charging infrastructure and cloud software that monitors the condition and performance of vehicles and batteries. Apart from its own brands, including Smartscooters and Eeyo electric bikes, Gogoro also makes its platform available through its Powered by Gogoro Network (PBGN) program, which enables partners to create vehicles that use Gogoro’s batteries and swapping stations.

Gogoro’s SPAC deal comes a few (Read more...)

Indonesian fintech Xendit is now a unicorn, with $150M in fresh funding led by Tiger Global



There’s a new entrant in Southeast Asia’s growing list of unicorns. Jakarta-based Xendit, best known for its digital payment infrastructure but also focused on other financial products, announced today it has raised $150 million in Series C funding, bumping its valuation to $1 billion. The round was led by Tiger Global Management, with participation from returning investors Accel, Amasia and Goat Capital, the venture firm co-founded by former Y Combinator partner Justin Kan (in 2015, Xendit became the first Indonesian startup to participate in the accelerator program).

Accel led Xendit’s $64.6 million Series B, announced just six months ago. This new round brings its total funding so far to $238 million. The company was founded in 2015 by chief executive officer Moses Lu and chief operating officer Tessa Wijaya.

At the end of last year, Xendit expanded into the Philippines, and says it is now one of the biggest payment players in the country. In July, it announced a strategic investment in legacy online payments platform Dragonpay.

Xendit decided to raise again because to fuel expansion into other countries, Wijaya told TechCrunch. “Our core focus at the moment for this new fundraise is to further regionalize and to expand our product suite in regions where we are at or will expand into.” The company also plans to launch value-added services.

Wijaya said that Xendit has experienced more than 200% year-over-year increase in total payments volume, and now (Read more...)

Indonesian fintech Xendit is now a unicorn, with $150M in fresh funding led by Tiger Global



There’s a new entrant in Southeast Asia’s growing list of unicorns. Jakarta-based Xendit, best known for its digital payment infrastructure but also focused on other financial products, announced today it has raised $150 million in Series C funding, bumping its valuation to $1 billion. The round was led by Tiger Global Management, with participation from returning investors Accel, Amasia and Goat Capital, the venture firm co-founded by former Y Combinator partner Justin Kan (in 2015, Xendit became the first Indonesian startup to participate in the accelerator program).

Accel led Xendit’s $64.6 million Series B, announced just six months ago. This new round brings its total funding so far to $238 million. The company was founded in 2015 by chief executive officer Moses Lu and chief operating officer Tessa Wijaya.

At the end of last year, Xendit expanded into the Philippines, and says it is now one of the biggest payment players in the country. In July, it announced a strategic investment in legacy online payments platform Dragonpay.

Xendit decided to raise again because to fuel expansion into other countries, Wijaya told TechCrunch. “Our core focus at the moment for this new fundraise is to further regionalize and to expand our product suite in regions where we are at or will expand into.” The company also plans to launch value-added services.

Wijaya said that Xendit has experienced more than 200% year-over-year increase in total payments volume, and now (Read more...)

Indonesia-based Rey Assurance launches its holistic approach to insurance with $1M in funding



Rey Assurance co-founders Bobby Siagian and Evan Tanotogono

Rey Assurance co-founders Bobby Siagian and Evan Tanotogono

Health insurance is the kind of thing people usually only think about only when they need it. Otherwise, their policies are just paperwork in their files or cards in their wallet. Indonesian insurtech Rey Assurance is taking a new approach. Once someone becomes a member, they also get access to a platform of health services, including AI-based self-assessment tools, 24/7 telemedicine consultations for no added fee and pharmacy deliveries. The startup is launching out of stealth today, having already raised $1 million in pre-seed funding from the Trans-Pacific Technology Fund (TPTF). 

Rey was founded this year by Evan Tanotogono, former head of digital channel at Sequis, one of Indonesia largest insurers, and Bobby Siagian, who held lead engineering roles at companies including Tokopedia and Sea Group. They are joined by insurance industry veteran David Nugrho as their chief business officer. 

They created Rey to address the low penetration of life and health insurance in Indonesia. “When you look at the root causes and pain points, you are looking at problems that are systemic here,” Tanotogono said. These include low awareness, expensive distribution channels like agents and telemarketing, high premiums and complicated policies.

“People feel like the product is really complex, the process is difficult and they don’t get the best value for the money. It’s been that way for many, many years,” he told TechCrunch. “We believe that we cannot just go into the market and digitize part of the (Read more...)

Southeast Asia-focused Jungle Ventures announces $225M first close for its fourth fund



A group photo of Jungle Ventures' team:(From left to right) Jungle Ventures’ founding partner Amit Anand, managing partner David Gowdey and founding partner Anurag Srivastava

(From left to right) Jungle Ventures’ founding partner Amit Anand, managing partner David Gowdey and founding partner Anurag Srivastava

Southeast Asia’s funding boom is set to continue, with Jungle Ventures announcing today the $225 million first close of its fourth fund. Fund IV started raising in mid-May and is targeting a total of $350 million.

The majority of its limited partners are returning from previous funds, and include Temasek Holdings, IFC (which put $25 million in Fund IV), DEG and Asian and global family offices. The firm says this makes Fund IV the largest fund across all early-stage funds in Southeast Asia this year.

Founded in 2012, Jungle Ventures launched with a $10 million debut fund. Then in 2016, it announced a $100 million second fund, followed in 2019 by its $240 million third fund.

Fund IV fits in with Jungle Ventures’ pace of raising a new fund every 2.5 to 3 years, founding partner Amit Anand told TechCrunch. It also happens to come at a time when the region is getting more attention—and capital.

“If you look at Southeast Asia, where we are today, the ecosystem has been in the works for a long time. We started the journey back in 2012. We’re one of the oldest funds in the region and we haven’t seen as good a time as today to be in the tech ecosystem in Southeast Asia,” he said.

“Opportunity and talent were always obvious in the region, and I think capital has followed. (Read more...)

Digital therapeutics startup Neuroglee raises $10M to help people with neurodegenerative conditions



Neuroglee Therapeutics, a startup developing digital therapeutics for people with neurodegenerative diseases, has raised a $10 million Series A led by Openspace Ventures and EDBI. The funding will be used to launch virtual neurology clinics and to support Neuroglee’s move to Boston. Other participants included Ramen Singh, the former chief executive officer of Mundipharma; Biofourmis co-founders Kuldeep Singh Rajput and Wendou Liu; and Eisai Co., the Japanese pharmaceutical that led Neuroglee’s last round last year.

In an email, founder and chief executive officer Aniket Singh Rajput told TechCrunch that the company is moving to Boston because the city “is one of the largest digital health hubs in the world. As a company devoted to developing our first line of solutions for treating mild cognitive impairment related to difficult-to-treat neurodegenerative conditions such as Alzheimer’s disease, we believe Boston will offer us the strategic support in order to do so.”

Neuroglee and the Mayo Clinic are currently working together on a new platform called Neuroglee Connect. Based on the Mayo Clinic’s 10-day in-person program HABIT (Health Action to Benefit Independence and Thinking) for people with mild cognitive impairment from possible neurodegenerative conditions, Neuroglee’s technology will enable HABIT to scale, making it available to patients and caregivers in their homes. Neuroglee Connect users will also have access to health navigators who are available 24 hours and clinical care teams for assessments and interventions.

Neuroglee’s product pipeline also includes digital therapeutics (Read more...)

Indonesia-focused Intudo Ventures closes $115M third fund



Intudo Ventures, the “Indonesia-only” investment firm, announced today it has closed its third fund, totaling $115 million. Called Intudo Ventures Fund III, it was raised in less than three months and oversubscribed.

Fund III’s limited partners include Black Kite Investments, the family office of Singaporean businessman Koh Bon Hwee; Wasson Enterprises, the family office of former Walgreens Boots Alliance chief executive officer Greg Wasson; and PIDC, the investment arm of Taiwan-based retail conglomerate Uni-President Enterprises Corp. Other LPs include more than 30 Indonesian families and their conglomerates; over 20 leading global funds and managing partners; and more than 10 founders of tech unicorns.

Intudo founding partners Patrick Yip and Eddy Chan launched the firm in June 2017 as the first Indonesia-only venture capital firm, with a debut fund of $10 million. At first, many people were dubious that a country-specific fund focused on early-stage Indonesian companies would take off, especially since Yip and Chan wanted to build a small portfolio and work closely with startups.

Then in 2019, Intudo closed its $50 million second fund with LPs including Founders Fund, which Chan said helped validate its mission. Portfolio companies from its first two funds include Pintu, TaniHub Group and Gredu.

At the beginning, “when we said we were going to raise $10 million, we got laughed out of the room by many managers, but four years into it, we’re running roughly $200 million dollars,” he told TechCrunch. “It shows that for the right markets, hyperlocal is the (Read more...)

E-commerce aggregator Rainforest raises $20M just months after its last funding



Four months after its last funding announcement, Singapore-based e-commerce aggregator Rainforest has closed a $20 million pre-Series A round led by Monk’s Hill Ventures. Other participants included January Capital, Crossbeam Venture Partners, Amasia and Lo & Behold Group, along with returning investors Nordstar and Insignia Venture Partners.

Rainforest announced in May that it had raised $6.55 million in equity and a $30 million debt facility to fund acquisitions. The company says its latest raise means it now has more than $50 million to spend on acquiring e-commerce brands.

Founded by former Carousell and Fave executives, Rainforest buys mostly Asia-based Amazon brands and wants to become the e-commerce version of consumer goods conglomerate Newell Brands.

Co-founder and chief executive officer J.J. Chai told TechCrunch in an email that Rainforest raised funding again because it’s doubled its portfolio since the last round and also has “a number of sizable acquisitions in the pipeline.” The company originally intended to raise about $8 million to $12 million to add to its seed round, but increased that amount to $20 million because of investor interest, he added. In addition to brand acquisitions, the funding will also be used on hiring and building its tech infrastructure.

Chai said Rainforest raised only equity this time because it hasn’t finished using the debt facility it got from Accial earlier this year.

Since launching in January 2021, Rainforest has acquired six brands, including (Read more...)

Financial comparison “super app” Jeff raises $1.5M seed extension



Financial services, especially those for people who don’t have access to traditional bank accounts or lines of credit, are proliferating in Southeast Asia. Jeff App wants to give consumers a “super app” where they can compare many financial products and apply for them using the startup’s proprietary data-scoring models. For service providers, Jeff serves as a distribution channel, helping them find and retain customers. The startup announced today it has raised a seed extension of $1.5 million, led by J12 Ventures. Other participants included iSeed Ventures and Toy Ventures, and returning investors EstBAN, Startup Wise Guys and other angels.

The funding brings Jeff’s total raised to about $2.5 million. It announced a $1 million seed round back in March. Founder and chief executive officer Tom Niparts told TechCrunch that Jeff had a net profitable second quarter and wasn’t planning on raising again, but investors were interested because of its strong growth since the beginning of the year. The startup claims that since the end of January, its users have tripled to 700,000, who compared a total of four million products over the past six months.

Founded in 2019, the startup is operational in Vietnam and has applied for a license to launch in Indonesia. It also plans to enter the Philippines in the third quarter. Part of the funding will be used to increase Jeff’s team from about 15 people now to more (Read more...)

Singapore-based caregiving startup Homage raises $30M Series C



Homage, the caregiving-focused startup, has raised a $30 million Series C led by Sheares Healthcare Group, which is wholly-owned by investment firm Temasek. Other participants included new investors DG Daiwa Ventures and Sagana Capital, and returning backers East Ventures (Growth), HealthXCapital, SeedPlus, Trihill Capital and Alternate Ventures.

The new funding will be used to develop Homage’s technology, continue integrating with aged and disability care payer and provider infrastructure and speed-up its regional expansion through partnerships with hospitals and care providers. Homage currently operates in Singapore, Malaysia and Australia.

The Singapore-based company’s services include home visits from caregivers, nurses, therapists and doctors; telemedicine; and services for chronic illnesses. One of the reasons Homage’s platform is able to scale up is its matching engine, which helps clients, like older adults and people living with chronic conditions, find providers who are best suited to their needs (the final matches are made by Homage’s team).

The startup says the round was oversubscribed and one of the largest fundings raised by an on-demand care platform in Southeast Asia and Oceania so far. It brings Homage’s total raised to more than $45 million.

As part of Series C, Sheares Healthcare Group chief corporate development officer Khoo Ee Ping will join Homage’s board of directors.

Homage now has a regional network of more than 6,000 pre-screened and trained care professionals. It claims that its business outside of Singapore has grown more than 600% (Read more...)