We live in exciting times. Recent years have seen the emergence of Southeast Asia’s very first unicorns—startups valued at over $1 billion—the stories of whom we’re now all too familiar with.
The world is a radically different place from where it was early this year. In early February, COVID-19 still felt like a faraway problem to many investors – something that people read about but did not expect to encounter firsthand.
As we saw the coronavirus situation unfolding in China and then snowballing throughout Southeast Asia, we knew from experience as investors and former operators in the region that, for some of our founders and CEOs, there would be difficult times ahead and they would need to start acting quickly and decisively.
There’s a great scene in HBO’s Silicon Valley that takes place at TechCrunch Disrupt where each Founder is pitching their big idea at Demo Day. We see each Founder going up to the stage one by one where they start with “We’re making the world a better place by [insert super technical business proposition].
There has never been a better time than now to be a tech investor in Southeast Asia. Tech companies are transforming traditional industries today. An exciting phenomenon is powering the rise of such transformational tech companies today: technification.
Southeast Asia’s healthcare system is struggling to meet the changing needs of its increasingly affluent population. Going forward, technology will play a key role in delivering cost-effective, high quality and convenient treatments.
At Monk’s Hill Ventures, we receive dozens of pitch decks every day. I personally look at hundreds of pitch decks every year. As a venture investor, it comes with the territory.
The coming generation of technology companies, which I call the ‘Third Generation’, mark a significant improvement on ‘Second Generation’ businesses that simply looked at one part of the customer journey i.e. from an offline on to an online platform.
In a vibrant region like Southeast Asia, expanding your business beyond the borders of your original market holds tremendous opportunities. A larger audience is only the beginning.
More and more investors and LPs are becoming interested in Southeast Asia. This is no surprise, given the region’s strong long-term track record of economic growth.
Scaling in SEA can be a challenge. It is one of the most diverse regions of the Asian continent, divided by politics, language and culture. But for startups, there are ways to overcome these challenges and turn this diversity into an opportunity as you expand your business across the region.
Existing regulations are difficult to navigate, while the implementation of new ones can sink entire business models. To add to that complexity, regulations tend to vary widely from country to country within a region. However, to be blunt: that’s simply no excuse.
Vietnam’s thriving startup ecosystem is expected to reach $33 billion by 2025. But so far, the top tech companies have mostly cloned successful companies elsewhere rather than brewing something specific to Vietnamese culture and society.
Fundraising is not supposed to be inhibitive, by preparing and strategizing your pitch you can save up a lot of valuable time - time that you can spend building your startup. The reality is that VCs are constantly looking for great startups to invest.
Empathy makes someone a better employee, and we also need to build empathy into our artificial intelligence applications.
Being a mentor is challenging. No question about it. It requires time, energy, and dedication. Not everybody is cut out for the gig. But here’s what no one tells you (or at least no one told me): being a mentee is also challenging.
With a rising middle class and a booming tech startup scene, Southeast Asia sits where China did 10 years ago—on the cusp of a major economic boom fueled by the tech industry.
What’s the secret to fintech’s appeal? It’s not just the vast numbers of unbanked people in the world, who represent a ready-made user base for innovative financial products.
Society is now developing a better understanding of how our social media accounts impact our lives in the physical world, and startups have a new chance to disrupt the market and move beyond some of the mistakes that major social media platforms are dealing with today.
The startup’s founding team attributes their sprint to success to their staff, and as they move into the next stage of their company, they aim to improve the networks they’ve forged so quickly.
Last year AI companies attracted more than $10.8 billion in funding from venture capitalists like me. AI has the ability to enable smarter decision-making. It allows entrepreneurs and innovators to create products of great value to the customer. So why don’t I don’t focus on investing in AI?
The first 100 days in any new job can be daunting. Acclimatizing yourself to new faces, new methodologies, new job functions, and new industries is hard for everyone. Below are some of my personal tips working in a Southeast Asian venture capital fund to help you beat the learning curve faster:
Every now and then in conversations with founders and friends, the question “would you do a startup again” will most certainly creep up.
VCs evaluate a lot of startups. This gives us a good look into how they operate, what they care about, and the type of people they want to hire. VCs also meet a lot of people, including those who are looking for their next job.
Today, data is an important competitive advantage for companies. Companies use it to understand their customers, decide on a business strategy, and optimize their business.
Everywhere I look these days I see cranes. Not the kind that fly, but construction cranes. While some look at them and see ugliness, I see something else: the towers reaching skyward symbolize Vietnam’s striving ambition, Vietnam’s promise.
I often say that success is half luck and half what you make of it. But the thing is, you can make your own luck.
For the benefits of the general public, this article seeks to shed light on our thought process in determining whether a startup is VC fundable and whether it is ripe for a Series A round.
So you’ve worked hard at setting up and launching your startup, and now you’re ready to take it to the next level. VC could be just what you need to accelerate your growth.
At MHV, we invest in the early period of a company’s life cycle. By this stage, the start-up has only been in operations for 1-2 years, and usually the entire team has less than 20 people.
You need to raise funding for your startup, so your friends start introducing you to investors – angels, venture capitalists, and so on. After a few weeks and a number of conversations later, you get a term sheet. You think it’s a low-ball offer. So you turn it down.
Many CEOs asked me if they can actually locate their engineering and product teams here and expect the same level of quality they get in the Valley. My simple answer is: absolutely.
My passion for understanding leadership began long before I incorporated by first startup. At the global level, for understanding how the one right leader can move entire economies.