S Korea’s Big Bang Angels seeks to raise $20m SEA-focused deep tech fund

Photo: Franck V./Unsplash

South Korean early-stage accelerator Big Bang Angels is seeking to raise a $20-million venture capital fund focused on deep tech startups in Southeast Asia, according to a top executive with the firm.

The proposed vehicle, named Big Bang Ventures SEA Deep Tech Fund, will allocate 70 per cent of proceeds in deep-tech companies while targeting to deploy 30 per cent for investments in service platform firms (machine learning, big data, cloud tech base).

“We are in talks with several LPs who are big corporates in Korea and expect that the fund will be closed by the end of this year,” Big Bang Angels managing partner David Kim told DealStreetAsia in an interaction.

He also said that the fund will target startups in the pre-Series A to Series A stage with an average ticket size of $500,000 to $1.5 million.

Big Bang Angels, set up in 2012, has set a target of finding 10 companies with a business value of KRW 100 billion (around $86 million) each over the next decade.

Currently, the South Korean early-stage accelerator has 100 portfolio companies and three exits under its belt. The firm said that it plans to collaborate with a Singapore-based venture capital firm to set up the Series A fund.

Southeast Asia region is witnessing increasing deal activity in deep tech startups.

According to a statement by Enterprise Singapore, deep tech investments jumped 25 per cent on-year to $305.2 million (S$416.4 million) across 76 deals from January to September this year. These were investments in advanced manufacturing, urban solutions and sustainability, and healthcare and biomedical sciences.

Recently, Wavemaker Partners, an early stage cross-border VC headquartered in Los Angeles and Singapore, in July secured a $60-million first close for its $100-million third Southeast Asian fund that will focus on seed-stage investments primarily in B2B and deep tech.

“Most VCs in SEA invest in consumer tech. We’re grateful to have had our share of consumer success with Luxola (acquired by LVMH) and Coins.ph (acquired by Gojek),” said Paul Santos, managing partner at Wavemaker Partners Southeast Asia. “With this new fund, we are thrilled to have the opportunity to continue to work with many of the best enterprise and deep tech founders in the region,” he added.

Meanwhile, seed investor Cocoon Capital has also hit the final close of its second fund at $22 million, exceeding an initial target of $20 million. The second fund will target the enterprise tech market, especially startups within medtech, fintech, insurtech and general deep tech.

In January, Singapore-based venture capital firm TRIVE Ventures said it plans to launch a $37.1-million (S$50-million) deep tech fund this year. TRIVE’s new fund will also take a market-agnostic approach, indicating that it will source international deep tech companies looking for exposure to Singapore and Southeast 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.

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.