Silicon Valley-based venture capital firm 500 Startups has doubled the size of its Southeast Asia-focused fund, to invest in more technology startups in the emerging region.
Among the names participating in the fund are Malaysia’s Genting Berhad, which controls Southeast Asia’s largest casino operator, investing $3 million, Bloomberg cited two people familiar with the matter.
South Korea’s GS Home Shopping Inc also plans to invest, it was reported.
Genting declined to comment on the development. GS Home Shopping, however, revealed that it is considering an investment in 500 Startups, according to the spokeswoman, Park Shin Ye.
Genting is the biggest shareholder in Genting Singapore Plc, which operates one of the two casinos in Singapore. The holding company controlled by billionaire Lim Kok The group also has interests in palm oil plantations, cruise-ship lines, property development, and energy.
GS Home Shopping operates a TV shopping channel and online malls.
500 Startups declined to comment on whether Genting and GS Home Shopping were investing in the Southeast Asia fund.
500 Startups, led by Dave McClure, has about $200 million of assets under management. Its backers include Yahoo Japan Corp and Banco Bilbao Vizcaya Argentaria SA.
It has invested in 1,200 companies across 50 countries since 2010.
The California-based five-year old company is also looking to raise $200 million for its fourth global fund after closing its third one in September, its website said.
According to The Tech-Portal, 500 Startups has decided to embark on a fourth round of funding last month, after recently closing its third one with an impressive $85 million.
The firm started with a $29 million debut fund, and then a $10 million fund, focused on Southeast Asia, called 500 Durians.
It also has several other fund being raised, that are on their ways to completion; one being 500 Startups Japan, which is en-route to complete its goal of $30 million in funding. Similarly, its Thailand (500 Tuktuks) and Korean (500 Kimchi) funds are close to reaching $10 million in funding.
The company is also raising yet another $10 million fund that it’s calling its Mobile Collective vehicle.
500 startups is planning to reserve half of its $200 million fund for follow-up investments.
McClure commented on TechCrunch that many of the investee companies from the first two funds are performing well and that the firm had missed out on some opportunities for follow-on investments.
“We have a lot of companies doing well from our two first funds, and there are lots of follow-on investments that we’ve chosen not to make because they were outside our budget. We consider those missed opportunities. We think 5 to 7 per cent of our investments will get to Series C rounds, or $100 million-plus in value, and we want [a bigger share] of those companies,” he said.