The Asia PE-VC Summit unveils 8 Fireside Chats with top Private Equity investors

The Asia PE-VC Summit 2021 aims to offer a curated and comprehensive coverage of the current investment landscape and a functional roadmap for the year ahead, with LP/GP perspectives on Southeast Asia, India and Greater China; the challenges and opportunities for PE & VC firms, frontier market plays and strategies; and deep dives into the potential of spotlight countries – India, China, Indonesia and Vietnam.

We are happy to announce 8 fireside chats with the region’s most influential deal-makers who will shed light on top investment themes and offer their perspectives on the road ahead.

🎙 Trendspotting & identifying the next big wave of digital economy winners

Asia PE-VC Summit 2021 | Trendspotting & identifying the next big wave of digital economy winners with Patrick Walujo

An early investor in Indonesian decacorn Gojek, Northstar Group is now training sights on the second wave of digital companies that are emerging in the healthtech, edtech, agritech and SaaS sectors. Northstar’s early bet Gojek merged with local e-commerce major Tokopedia, in a landmark deal, to create one of SE Asia’s biggest tech conglomerates.

Northstar will continue to back enterprises in Indonesia and Vietnam, two of SE Asia’s most attractive markets. But, have these markets delivered so far for private equity investors? Can Southeast Asia – with its lower labour costs, higher purchasing power and smartphone adoption – become Asia’s next major digital market? Patrick Walujo will discuss the firm’s investment thesis and its focus on consumer goods, financial services and the digital economy, sectors that are set to emerge stronger from the COVID-19 pandemic. Northstar is on track for an $800-million final close of its fifth fund by the end of the year.

🎙 The art and science of making PE investments during crisis times

Asia PE-VC Summit 2021 | The art and science of making PE investments during crisis times with Weijian Shan
Despite regulatory crackdown on several fast-growing sectors and the continued Sino-US trade tensions, China continues to see growth in investments, private equity fundraising and expansion in deal sizes as global institutional investors bat for long-term macro factors. China is projected to contribute up to 25% of global GDP growth from now until 2024. Will LPs accordingly allocate capital to funds targeting the Middle Kingdom? Will we continue to see PE fundraising in China largely concentrated on the biggest funds? Shan will share his insights on how the PE industry views the latest developments in the technology space in China, particularly on on the regulatory front, as well as his reading of the US-China relations under the Biden administration so far, in addition to other geopolitical developments.

The author of Money Games and Out of the Gobi, Shan had established PAG’s PE branch in 2010 after his previous stints leading deals at TPG and Newbridge Capital. The team has raised four vehicles to date, including PAG Growth Fund I and three buyout-focused pan-Asia funds: PAG Asia I (closed in 2012 at $2.5 billion), PAG Asia II (closed in 2016 at $3.6 billion), and PAG Asia III (closed in 2018 at $6 billion). PAG is currently in the market to raise its fifth direct lending fund for the region.

🎙 The post-Covid exit landscape and new fundraising order in SE Asia

Asia PE-VC Summit 2021 | The post-Covid exit landscape and new fundraising order in SE Asia with Nicholas Bloy
Private equity deal-making in SE Asia appears to be bouncing back in 2021 compared to last year’s lacklustre exit record as well fewer buyout transactions. The region is also seeing an increase in the number of global PE majors looking at SE Asia even as limited partners are setting up regional offices to boost their direct investments.

How are LPs and GPs approaching digital fundraising and virtual underwriting? Will the increased dry powder lead to record deals in the rest of 2021 and next year? What will the new normal be for SE Asia and which markets and sectors will see heightened activity? Will remote work allow SEA-focused PE firms to have boots on the ground in more countries here, enabling greater access to deal flow?

Bloy, who is responsible for fundraising at Navis, will share his perspectives on the overall PE investment landscape in the current context. Malaysia-headquartered Navis Capital manages approximately $5 billion in public and private equity capital and focuses on investments primarily in and around Asia. Navis is in the process of raising its eighth fund, seeking up to $1.9 billion. Navis Capital has also been actively exploring exits from its investments and has also sealed several divestments in recent months.

🎙 Consolidation & turnaround trends to boost demand for alternative capital in Asia

Asia PE-VC Summit 2021 | Consolidation & turnaround trends to boost demand for alternative capital in Asia with Edwin Wong

With banks reducing their exposure, alternative assets managers are best placed to fill the financing gap across Asia. Buoyed by growing demand for alternative capital in the wake of the pandemic, special situations-focused Ares SSG is looking at investment opportunities in real estate and financial services sectors in two of Asia’s largest economies – India and China. In March 2021, the Hong Kong-based fund sealed the deal to acquire Indian debt-ridden real estate financier Altico Capital.

Ares SSG, which has more than $7 billion in AUM, makes credit, private equity, and special situations investments on behalf of its institutional clients. The firm is on track to hit the final close of its latest Asia-Pacific focussed secured lending fund at $1.5 billion. In 2019, it had closed its fifth flagship fund SSG Capital Partners V at $1.9 billion and raised an additional $825 million for a sidecar fund.

🎙 Applying global lessons to Asian tech investments

Asia PE-VC Summit 2021 | Applying global lessons to Asian tech investments with Cyrus Driver

Asia is seeing intense competition for technology assets, and global private equity major Partners Group is the latest to join this crowded space. Can the Swiss alternative assets manager, which plans to allocate 15-20% of its global tech investments to opportunities in Asia to start with, stand out? Driver, now managing director of Partners’ Private Equity Technology business unit, will dwell on the firm’s efforts at making pure technology investments as part of its strategy after the global pandemic has thrown up a plethora of opportunities with enormous growth potential.

While Partners Group has invested in software services providers in the US and Europe, its exposure to similar opportunities in Asia remains limited. Can the firm bring its learnings from non-tech businesses that it typically invests into sectors such as SaaS, software and other segments within the internet ecosystem? Partners Group has recently reorganised its business units based on sectors as opposed to geography previously.

🎙 New digital scripts India will play to in the post-pandemic world and beyond

Asia PE-VC Summit 2021 | New digital scripts India will play to in the post-pandemic world and beyond with Haresh Chawla
The pandemic has clearly altered and accelerated India’s digital transformation journey. India has already produced 16 unicorns in the first six months of 2021 compared to 10 in the whole of 2020. Haresh Chawla, rated among the country’s most influential commentators in identifying the big shifts in India’s economy, society, and its future, will explain why the country’s digital landscape will never be the same again in the post-pandemic world.

At True North, Chawla focuses on investments in the food and consumer sectors where he identifies and helps transform mid-sized businesses. True North closed its sixth fund, from which it is currently investing, in 2019, raising about $600 million. It has earmarked about $200-250 million from its sixth fund for deals in the consumer space, particularly niche brands that are riding the digitalisation wave spurred by the pandemic-induced changes in consumer behaviour.

🎙 The “next big what” opportunities unfolding in the life sciences space

Asia PE-VC Summit 2021 | The “next big what” opportunities unfolding in the life sciences space with Dr Amit Verma
Co-founder Amit Verma, a practising doctor, believes that the healthcare market in India and Southeast Asia market combined will be bigger and grow faster than US-EU put together by 2025. When it comes to the economics of healthcare, Verma believes the platform approach – combining smaller clinics and hospitals under one group – is the way forward. The session will discuss private equity’s role in bridging the gap between the challenges investors face – manpower, technology and supply chains – and patient requirements – affordability, accessibility and quality.

Quadria, the only PE firm in the healthcare space that looks at opportunities across South Asia had closed its second fund at $595 million last year, exceeding its target of $400 million. From India to Indonesia and Vietnam, the firm is scouting for new investment opportunities and targeting healthcare services; life sciences, pharma and medical devices; distribution or retail platforms; and health technology. It is also on track to close its second VC fund at $150 million soon.

🎙 Strong capital structures, liquidity and credit access key to navigate the crisis

Asia PE-VC Summit 2021 | Strong capital structures, liquidity and credit access key to navigate the crisis with Atul Kapur
Having seen the rise of private equity in India over the last decade, Atul Kapur will take us through the onward journey of this asset class in the post-pandemic world. How will Everstone – best known for its platform approach, value-add strategy and buyouts approach – navigate its operations across PE, VC, real estate and infrastructure following the changes brought about by the pandemic? This chat will also seek to explore the underlying strong fundamentals that led to a 38% rise in PE investments in India to a record $62.2 billion in the Covid year of 2020 even though the exit record continued to be lacklustre.

The Everstone co-founder will also share insights on how locally-grown PE firms can compete and differentiate themselves from the new class of investors like pension funds, sovereign wealth funds, specialised secondary funds, global buyout funds and strategics. The Singapore-based PE firm is seeking to raise as much as $950 million for its fourth fund that will back companies in India and Southeast Asia. Everstone manages more than $5 billion across private equity, real estate, green infrastructure and venture capital funds. Everstone has also launched a dedicated credit fund.

Get a sneak peek at the Asia PE-VC Summit 2021


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Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.