500 startups closes $15.4m Thai fund; second vehicle to be launched soon

500 TukTuks, the Thailand-focussed micro fund from Silicon Vallyer’s 500 Startups, has hit the final close at $15.4 million, over 50% higher than its initial target of $10 million.

In the announcement on Friday, 500 Startups did not disclose the names of the investors, but said that the fund size was larger than expected due to massive interest from high-net-worth individual and corporate investors.

“We have reached 30th investment in our portfolio, which we believed, marked the status of the most active seed investors in Thailand and in Southeast Asia – but we still want to invest in around 30 more companies,” said the fund’s manager Krating Poonpol.

This portal had first reported last year that 500 Startups stables was considering expanding the size of its proposed Thailand micro fund from $12 million to $15 million, and was also planning to raise a second vehicle to inject more money into local startups in that country.

The company has now confirmed the development, and said it was considering the launch of 500 TukTuks II this year, while adding that the vehicle, which was was expected to launch soon, would focus on seed investment to Series A stage, as plenty of Thai startups remain in need of capital for their growth stage.

Krating had also said in the previous interview that the fund – 500 TukTuks – aims to invest around 60 startups by 2018.

500 TukTuks was launched in April 2015 with the initial fund size of $10 million.

Krating and Moo Natavudh, who are known as the godfather of Thai startups, are the vehicle’s venture partners, and the duo also play an important role to encourage both the government and investors to pay more attention to local startups.

According to the fund, the last ten promising startups that have secured the funding from 500 TukTuks comprise Pomelo (online fashion marketplace), finAccel (POS financing solution provider), FavStay (online holiday home booking platform), Tourkrub (e-marketplace for outbound tour packages), TrustingSocial (credit scoring for the underbanked in emerging markets by analyzing data from telcos and lenders), PerroPack (an online pet-care ecosystem), Gnowbe (enterprise app to engage and transform people), Asiola (an equity-based crowdfunding platform), Cookly (a booking platform for culinary activities) and Freshket (e-marketplace for fresh food and restaurants).

Also read:

Exclusive: Thai-focussed 500 TukTuks mulls fund extension or second vehicle

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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.