SG Roundup: Sirrus VC, BlueHill Asset Management

Visual from Lalamove website

India and China continue to be the focus of many Singapore-based venture capital (VC) firms as they look to grow their portfolio in emerging markets.  For some of these VCs, their investments range from a company referred to as ‘Uber for logistics’ to the remittance business for a mobile commerce company.

Sirrus Venture Capital invests in Lalamove

Singapore-based Sirrus Venture Capital has joined a slew of other investors to pump in $10 million into Hong Kong based ‘on-demand’ delivery startup Lalamove.

The round was led by China’s Crystal Stream Capital and other participants included, Geek Founders, Mindworks Ventures, and Aria Group along with some individual investors.

Lalamove (formerly EasyVan in Hong Kong and Singapore), that was launched in December 2013, will use the funding to expand operations to both South East Asia and China. The company has grown into one Asia’s largest mobile logistics booking platform with operations in six cities including Hong Kong, Singapore, Bangkok, Guangzhou, Shenzhen and Taipei.

Shing Chow, Lalamove CEO & founder said, “With the launch of Guangzhou and Shenzhen last week and the release of our WeChat app, we will look to push the boundaries of how logistics work by using technology to make them more customer and driver friendly. This round of funding will help us to continue our mission to create the world’s biggest logistics platform in transaction value. We are actively hiring talented developers and city founders to achieve the mission in two years.”

BlueHill invests $3 million in Indian fintech startup

Singapore based venture capital firm BlueHill Asset Management has invested $3 million in Indian m-commerce and mobile apps company Triotech Solutions Pvt Ltd. For Triotech, which is in the financial technology (fintech) space, this marks its first round of funding. The deal was done in December 2014.

The Gurgaon-based company will use the funding to expand the number of post offices in the country that provides money transfer services through its subsidiary Maverick Mobile. Currently, about 15,000 post office use this facility and the company plans to increase this to 40,000.

“We see Triotech Solutions in the right space of growth, especially with huge potential in the mWallet, mobile banking and remittance space in India,” Vicknesh Pillay, BlueHill’s managing director had said.

Customers in India can deposit money at post offices that offer this facility, and then use the app to enter the beneficiary’s mobile phone number along with the pin code. The app then sends a code to the beneficiary’s mobile, and the latter can use that code at the nearest post office to withdraw the money. In this use, both the sender and receiver need to have a bank account, and this facility is available in both urban and rural India.

“We are working towards creating multiple use cases on the same platform for ease of the end consumer, which would increase the footprint of this solution. The initial fund will be used for enhancing this solution wherein point to multi-point mobile money transfers will be done. The use cases would help banks/microfinance companies to use the same remittance platform for wide distribution of money to the far-flung areas instantly,” said Munish Dhingra, co-founder and chief sales officer at Triotech Solutions.

BlueHill, set up in 2013 has also invested in IT analytics firm MindWave Global and end-to-end software solutions firm Zukami.

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.