Philippines’ New Wave, Malaysia’s Emissary Capital plan to set up $50m joint ASEAN fund

Philippines-based IP E-Game Ventures’ subsidiary, New Wave, has signed an initial documentation with Malaysia’s boutique investment firm Emissary Capital to set up a $50 million fund for ASEAN startups.

The fund aims to build stronger collaboration between startups in the region, focusing on the Malaysian and Philippine market, according to a joint statement by IP E-Game Ventures and Emissary Capital on Tuesday. 

Subject to conditions, New Wave will invest up to $7.5 million as a limited partner. The two firms will form a joint venture to serve as general partners to manage the fund’s investment decisions.

“We are looking to strengthen the corridor between Malaysia and the Philippines, as well as with the rest of Southeast Asia. Technology businesses today must have a regional outlook and entrepreneurs must demonstrate the ability to scale this way,” New Wave director  Enrique Gonzalez said. “Our fund is looking to invest in Southeast Asia’s growth companies led by founders that have proved resilience and success.”

With both countries harnessing the digital economy to hasten COVID-19 recovery, the investment firms are maintaining a bullish outlook on Malaysia and the Philippines as growth hubs, especially for tech-based startups.

Kuala Lumpur and Manila are seen to be among the top emerging startup ecosystems in the world, ranking 11th and 31st respectively, based on the Global Startup Ecosystem Report 2020. Despite the pandemic’s disruptions, fintech is a common sub-sector strength identified in the report by both markets, evidenced by the proliferation of e-wallets and digital payments-focused business models.

Other strong sub-sectors noted are Malaysia’s esports thrust and the Philippines’ high e-commerce demand, according to the statement.

IP E-Game Ventures was incorporated in 2005, to engage primarily in the business of interactive gaming and content distribution to the local, regional, and global market.

New wave is a wholly-owned investment company of IP-e game Ventures. New wave manages over $40 million assets including real estate holdings in Southeast Asia. New Wave is led by Enrique Gonzalez, who is also a partner at the SB Kaikaku Fund, and IP Ventures.

Malaysia-based Emissary Capital is a boutique investment firm focusing on Asean. Its team includes co-working space Common Ground’s founders Juhn Teo and Erman Akinci, according to its website. Another team member is Khalil Ibrahim,  the managing director and controlling shareholder of SISMA, a privately-held diversified business entity in Malaysia. He is also currently a director at iCARASIA, which operates digital car portals in Malaysia, Thailand and Indonesia.

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.