Home Venture Capital Jungle Ventures renews Southeast Asia, India bets with $600 mln fund

Jungle Ventures renews Southeast Asia, India bets with $600 mln fund


SINGAPORE, May 18 (Reuters) – Singapore-based Jungle Ventures has raised $600 million in a new fund backed by new and existing investors including Temasek, the latest venture capital firm to target more money on investments in Southeast Asia and India.

The fundraising for the fourth Jungle Ventures fund, among the largest regionally, comes amid a technology boom that has accelerated as more consumers moved online during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We are sitting on a start of a 10, 20, 30-year secular trend of digitalisation,” said Amit Anand, Jungle Ventures’ founding partner, highlighting changing consumption patterns and adoption of online platforms by small and medium businesses.

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The decade-old firm, which says it was the first independent, Singapore-headquartered venture capital firm to invest in Southeast Asia and India, said it scaled up the fund due to heavy demand after an initial target of $350 million.

The first close of the fund took place in September. More than half the commitments for the latest fund came from existing backers including International Finance Corporation and Dutch development bank FMO, Jungle Ventures said in a statement.

The remainder came from new backers such as Mizuho Bank, global private markets investor StepStone Group (STEP.O) and many family offices, Anand said.

Despite a sharp fall in equity markets this year, especially in tech firms, companies with strong margins and robust businesses would still attract investor interest, he said.

“In today’s environment, it’s going to get harder for the next 3-4 months for both investment funds as well as founders. But I think that’s a short term blip,” Anand told Reuters.

He expects investor interest in tech firms, including in IPOs, to recover towards the later half of this year.

Jungle Ventures expects to make only 15-18 investments in total from the fund, Anand said, adding that business-to-business fintech firms and education technology companies were among those that offer strong opportunities.

“It’s a very concentrated, very high conviction investment strategy that we have been building over the last 10 years,” Anand said. The portfolio is evenly split between companies based in India and Southeast Asia.

The $600 million comprises $450 million in the main fund and $150 million in additional managed commitments. Jungle Ventures raised $240 million in its third fund in 2019.

Jungle Ventures’ portfolio of 60 firms includes Indian home renovation company Livspace, Thai e-commerce startup Pomelo Fashion and Kiotviet, a merchant platform for small and medium enterprises.

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Reporting by Anshuman Daga; Editing by Alexander Smith

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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