SE Asia Deal Review: Startup funding touches new record at $5.2b in November

The startup fraternity in Southeast Asia has reasons to cheer.

Even as the adverse impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic are still looming large on the region, privately-held companies raised $5.2 billion in November, the highest so far this year, recording a whopping 225% jump from the month of October.

According to proprietary data compiled by DealStreetAsia, the increase in value can be attributed to two large-ticket transactions that accounted for more than half of the total corpus raised by entrepreneurs.

In terms of volume, as many as 119 funding deals (primarily venture capital) were clocked last month, up from 98 in October, the data further showed.

In the months of August and September, startups in Southeast Asia raised $2.8 billion and $1.7 billion, respectively.

SE Asia Deal Review

In the biggest transaction in November, Indonesian courier startup J&T Express raised $2.5 billion in a funding round that valued the company at $20 billion, ahead of its plan to list in Hong Kong as early as the first quarter of 2022.

According to a Reuters report, Boyu Capital, Hillhouse Capital Group, and Sequoia Capital China, besides Chinese gaming and internet giant Tencent Holdings invested in the maga funding round.

Meanwhile, the biggest tech group in the archipelago, GoTo, formed through the merger of e-commerce leader Tokopedia and ride-hailing giant Gojek, raised over $1.3 billion in the first close of its pre-IPO round led by a wholly-owned unit of Abu Dhabi Investment Authority (ADIA).

Other megadeals in November include Philippines-based payments app Mynt’s over $300 million funding; Indonesian over-the-top platform Vidio Dot Com’s $150 million investment from Affinity Equity Partners; and Singapore-based used car marketplace Carro’s $100 million funding.

The megadeals ($100m and above) of November 2021

Expand Table

StartupHeadquartersInvestment Size (US$)Investment StageLead Investor/sIndustry / Sector
J&T ExpressIndonesia$2,500,000,000Private EquityBoyu Capital, Hillhouse Capital Group, Sequoia Capital China, SIG China (SIG Asia Investments), Susquehanna International Group (SIG), TencentLogistics and distribution
GoToIndonesia$1,300,000,000Pre-IPOAbu Dhabi Investment Authority (ADIA), Avanda Investment Management, Fidelity International, Google, Permodalan Nasional Berhad (PNB), Primavera Capital Group, SeaTown Master Fund, Temasek, Tencent, and Ward FerrySuperApp
MyntPhilippines$300,000,000Private EquityBow Wave Capital Management, Insight Partners, Warburg PincusFintech
VidioIndonesia$150,000,000Private EquityAffinity Equity PartnersMedia & Entertainment
CarroSingapore$100,000,000Series CAnderson Investment (Temasek), Permodalan Nasional BerhadE-commerce

Indonesia leads value, Singapore tops volume

Indonesia saw 26 funding deals last month valued at over $4 billion, thanks to the combined multi-billion-dollar deals of J&T Express and GoTo. Meanwhile, in Singapore, investors pumped in $590 million across 54 transactions.

The Philippines came in at third in terms of deal value, with local firms securing $306.5 million over nine deals. Thailand’s eight funding deals netted $100.6 million, while Vietnamese firms raised $75.5 million in 10 transactions.

In Malaysia, the number of deals stood at 11 worth $3.7 million. Myanmar, however, witnessed only one transaction wherein the amount of funding was undisclosed.

SE Asia Deal Review November

Early-stage deals remain favourite

Data compiled by DealStreetAsia showed that startups in their earlier funding stages continued to be more popular than their growth- and later-stage peers in terms of deal count.

In November, investor appetite for emerging businesses in Southeast Asia was evident in the 75 deals sealed in Series A-stages and earlier. Of that, seed rounds accounted for 40 transactions.

There were only eight Series B deals and three Series C deals sealed during the month. Private equity funding saw six transactions, while the remaining deals did not specify the funding amount.

Tech investments in the region continue to evince significant investor interest as startups gear up to grab a slice of the internet economy in Southeast Asia, which is poised to touch $1 trillion by 2030, according to the e-Conomy SEA 2021 report.

SE Asia Deals November

In November, startups in new-age digital sectors such as e-commerce, financial services, and software spaces continued to bag funding, a trend that started gaining steam when the COVID-19 virus hit the shores of Southeast Asia.

Fintech and financial services witnessed as many as 31 transactions, raising $575.5 million in funding last month. E-commerce followed with 17 deals valued at $253 million, while SaaS firms raised $9.3 million from 15 deals.

Logistics only had four deals but raised the largest amount at $2.511 billion on the back of J&T Express’s mammoth funding.

Meanwhile, media and entertainment scored $160.5 million with just three deals, while three deals in renewable energy raised a combined $100.5 million in funding.

Most active investors

F10, a Swiss-based startup incubator and accelerator, provided non-equity assistance to five startups in November to become one of the most active investors in Southeast Asia.

Accelerating Asia, another accelerator programme based in Singapore, invested seed funding in four startups. Animoca Brands, Global Founders Capital, Heliconia Capital Management, MassMutual Ventures, and Sequoia Capital India were among the most active lead investors in the month.

 

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.