Get ready for a whirlwind of venture capital excitement. Brace yourselves, 500 Global - the venture firms and seed accelerators - has just closed $143M in funding. They've named this financial feat "500 Southeast Asia III" (or "500 SEA III" if you're short on time).
Roster of Contributors: It includes a sovereign wealth fund, both public and private pension funds, a university endowment, and several 500 Global portfolio companies with an estimated value of over $1B. Not too shabby, huh?
Fun Fact: The initial target was just $75M. They practically doubled it! But let's break things down for a sec. Well, 500 SEA III actually closed at $100M, with the remaining $43M allocated for their growth and later-stage startups.
Money, Money, Money: This fund is ready to back 100 pre-seed, seed, and Series A startups. First checks are set to be between $250,000 and $500,000 and primed to be signed across Malaysia, the Philippines, Vietnam, Thailand, Singapore, and Indonesia.
Why Southeast Asia: It's a hotbed for startups, and is predicted to be one of the prime growth drivers of the global economy. According to Centro Ventures, VCs made 393 investments in Southeast Asia startups in just the first half of 2021, and per Golden Gate Ventures, funding in the region is expected to break the $14B ceiling by 2023.
Not Smooth Sailing: Governments across Southeast Asia are tightening regulations and ramping up taxes on tech companies. For instance, Indonesia now requires tech firms to pay value-added tax on local sales, even for offshore-initiated purchases.
Since its foundation in 2010, San Francisco-based 500 Global has been making waves in the VC world, backing more than 2,800 companies operating in over 80 countries.
The firm currently boasts $2.4B in assets under management and a team of about 190 entrepreneurs, investors and operators based in over 25 countries. And with this latest round of funding, they're all set to make an even bigger splash.