Watch investors discuss opportunities for SE Asia amid China’s tech crackdown

(Clockwise) Rui Ma, founder of Tech Buzz China; James Tan, managing partner at Quest Ventures; and venture capitalist Helen Wong talk during a panel discussion at the Asia PE-VC Summit in September 2021.

For investors rattled by Beijing’s tightened regulatory control over its tech sector, Southeast Asia is emerging as a top alternative destination.

“I think there are many Chinese founders — especially in e-commerce, but really across all sectors — that are now looking at globalising [their businesses] with much more seriousness,” said Rui Ma, founder of Tech Buzz China during a panel discussion titled ‘How China’s crackdown on tech will play out in the long-term’ at the Asia PE-VC Summit 2021 in September this year.

Ma, who has 16 years of experience in investing, was joined in the panel by the seasoned investor Helen Wong; and James Tan, managing partner at Quest Ventures, a top venture capital fund in Asia.

“There is a feeling of uncertainty and insecurity among entrepreneurs in China’s Internet field,” said Wong. “The period of regulatory upheavals is positive for venture capital companies who can help them expand into the overseas market,” she added.

Many of the Chinese individuals who are moving to SE Asia will “become a natural bridge to raising Chinese capital,” said Tan. “If you don’t want to deal with the regulatory pressure in China, you can come to SE Asia… there are regulations [across the region], but at least they are not interfering in the [tech] space.”

Watch the full video of the panel discussion here:

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.