Qiming Ventures to decide in a year if Southeast Asia deserves its own fund

Qiming founding managing partner Gary Rieschel
Qiming Venture Partners founding managing partner Gary Rieschel. Photo: Bloomberg

In yet another sign of Southeast Asia increasingly catching the fancy of Chinese venture firms, Qiming Venture Partners has given itself a year to decide whether to continue investing in the region from its main fund or launch a dedicated Southeast Asia fund.

Is it not late to the party though? Qiming Ventures founding managing partner Gary Rieschel doesn’t think so.

“[T]here are half a billion people in the immediate Southeast Asia region, a good part of the technology infrastructure is several years behind what China has implemented particularly on internet related services, mobile related services. So, it will be different than China but I don’t think we have missed the investment cycle in the region, we have probably reached the investment cycle for the initial wave of sharing economy companies,” Rieschel said.

On the other hand, India is a market where Qiming has decided it will not adopt an aggressive stance due to the country’s weak early-stage record and its lack of infrastructure.

“[Y]ou’ll see us do some business. I don’t think we’re late, but I think we’re not going to be aggressive, because we’re not going to put a team in India anytime in the near future,” he added.

In a wide-ranging interview, Rieschel spoke about the US-China trade war – he prefers to call it a trade dispute -, the current fundraising environment and a long due rationalisation in valuations, among other things.

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