SIP Global Partners, a US- and Japan-headquartered venture capital firm, has made a $75 million first close of its debut fund that seeks to invest in early-stage US startups with the potential to expand into Japan and other Asian markets.
The fund, which targets $150 million in total commitments, has already made five investments and continues to look at late seed to Series B-stage firms that have a product that is ready to expand in Asia and the Gulf region, according to a company announcement.
SIP’s portfolio includes Fable, a web-based, full-stack motion design tool; Croquet, an ultra- low latency, collaboration platform; Tilt Five, an AR platform set to revolutionize gaming; Parallel Wireless, a next-generation O-RAN technology company; and KINETIC, an industrial IoT technology focused on workplace safety and productivity.
The firm said it provides US startups an entry point to scalable market opportunities in Asia, starting with Japan.
“It’s no longer axiomatic that a US startup waits until a Series C or D round to enter Asia markets. In fact, we see as early as US seed-stage startups already in Asia, and over 90 per cent of our pipeline is expanding or actively considering expansion,” said Shigeki Saitoh, SIP Global Partners co-founder and managing partner.
Saitoh is the former director of the Japan Venture Capital Association. He, along with Justin Turkat, who is also based in Japan, and US-based Jeffrey Smith and Matthew Salloway, launched SIP.
According to the firm, the debut fund invests in companies poised for large scale growth in Asia across three key themes: Creativity (AR/XR, Synthetic media, Web-based platforms), Productivity (AI/ML, Edge Computing/IoT, Semiconductors), and Safety (Digital health, Information security).
“Though international travel is limited today due to the COVID-19 pandemic, opportunities in Asia persist, and we look forward to helping companies unlock those opportunities,” Justin Turkat, SIP Global Partners co-Founder and managing partner, said.