Indonesia’s Alpha JWC Ventures closes second fund at $123m

The Alpha JWC Ventures team

Jakarta-based venture capital firm Alpha JWC Ventures has closed its second early-stage fund at $123 million after securing commitments from investors in Southeast Asia, Korea, China, Japan, and Europe.

The fundraising marks a record for an Indonesia-focused early-stage venture capital fund. Alpha JWC was seeking to raise $100 million for the second fund, which was launched in 2018.

The latest fund follows the tech-focused VC firm’s $50-million debut fund launched in 2016, which backed 23 early-stage companies in Southeast Asia, including the region’s largest peer-to-peer lending platform Funding Societies (also known as Modalku), Southeast Asia’s largest automotive marketplace Carro, and Indonesia’s largest digital credit card provider Kredivo.

Alpha JWC claims that more than 90 per cent of its portfolio companies have received follow-on funding and its first fund’s net asset value has grown 3.2 times in four years. The venture capital firm has also registered two successful exits — Spacemob, which was acquired byWeWork in 2017, and DealStreetAsia, which was acquired by Nikkei in 2019.

The second fund, which started making investments in late 2018, has invested in 14 companies so far. Its biggest cheque so far has gone to grab-and-go coffee chain Kopi Kenangan, which bagged $8 million in November 2018 from the Indonesian investor.

“With the new fund, we can be more active and cover more sectors and regions than before. However, we do notice that the digital economy’s landscape, trend, and behaviour have been changing, especially in the past year. Hence, we have to be optimistic and active, yet cautious,” said Alpha JWC Ventures co-founder and managing partner Chandra Tjan.

With 33 active portfolio companies and counting, Alpha JWC says it has built a network of its own.

“We’ve built strong and close working relationships with our Alpha JWC Family. We envision a collaborative and positive ecosystem within our network,” co-founder & managing partner Jefrey Joe said.

Alpha JWC has more than 20 professionals in its team, making it one of the largest among Indonesian VCs. The firm added three new partners in 2019 – former SEA Group chief strategy officer Alan Hellawell, the firm’s first hire and former principal Erika Dianasari, and former Creador investment VP Eko Kurniadi.

Alpha JWC is now planning to expand its footprint in Southeast Asia. The firm has set up an office in Singapore and is also looking to build a significant presence in Vietnam, even as it continues to focus on its home market.

“We are actively looking at Vietnam whose economy is one of the fastest-growing in the world. We believe that Vietnam is Southeast Asia’s next biggest market and it’s still a greenfield for both founders and investors. So far, we have three investments in Vietnam and several more in the pipeline,” Chandra said.

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.