EV Growth Fund makes final close at $200m, secures SoftBank backing

EV Growth Fund, a joint venture between Sinar Mas, East Ventures and Yahoo! Japan, has made a final close at $200 million, exceeding its $150-million target.

The fund secured commitments from investors including SoftBank Group Corp, Pavilion Capital and Indies Capital, EV Growth managing partner Willson Cuaca told DEALSTREETASIA.

EV Growth Fund vice president Yoshi Okubo announced the final close on LinkedIn separately.

Yoshi Okubo's LinkedIn update

Yoshi Okubo’s LinkedIn update

About 40 per cent of the fund has already been deployed after investments in companies including Warung Pintar, IDN Media, Sociolla, Ruangguru, Moka and ShopBack.

EV Growth also joined investors, including Singapore’s GIC, backing a $420-million financing for Indonesian unicorn Traveloka.

Cuaca said the joint venture aims to launch its second fund next year.

EV Growth is focused on providing growth capital to startups in Indonesia and the rest of Southeast Asia. We had reported in February that the fund was oversubscribed, forcing the firm to revise its initial target and setting it on course to become one of the largest vehicles in the region.

Speaking at DEALSTREETASIA’s Indonesia PE-VC Summit 2019 in January, Cuaca had said that EV Growth would maintain the pace that East Ventures has had over the last couple of years, which is over a deal a month, and sometimes, as much as a deal a week.

“I am not convincing them (Sinar Mas and Yahoo! Japan). They have to convince us to slow down. We have been doing exactly the same as we did with the seed fund,” Willson had said, replying to a query on the speed at which the JV vehicle would make investments.

East Ventures, which has launched six funds in the last seven years, is one of the VC pioneers in Indonesia and among the 10 most consistent top performing VC fund managers in the world. The firm claims to have provided seed investment to 70 per cent of Indonesian startups that went on to raise Series A funding.

Operating from Singapore, EV Growth Fund shares its office with China and US-focused venture capital major GGV Capital.

Other VC funds in the market include Vertex Ventures, which recently hit the first close at $230 million for its SEA and India fund, B Capital Group and Jungle Ventures.

Singapore-based B Capital Group, a global tech fund which counts Facebook co-founder Eduardo Saverin as a founding partner, recently made the first close of its second fund after securing $406.1 million in commitments.

Singapore’s Jungle Ventures recently raised $175 million from investors including Temasek Holdings Pte for the first close of its third Southeast Asia fund. Earlier this month, we reported that it is seeking approval from the limited partners backing its latest fund to increase the vehicle’s hard cap.

Latitude Venture Partners, the venture capital arm of Indonesian conglomerate Sinar Mas, launched operations last year with a $200-million corpus, while ride-hailing and payments unicorn Grab had allocated $250 million for investments in the archipelago.

Per the latest report by Google and Temasek, the internet economy in SEA is expected to grow to $240 billion by 2025. Indonesia magnifies the opportunity set within Southeast Asia’s internet economy, not just because of its large population, but also because of a large headroom for technological penetration across multiple verticals.

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.