The Vietnamese version of funding TV show Shark Tank is launching on November 4 with a corpus of VND70 billion ($3 million) targeting early stage financing for promising startups and to raise the awareness about the local fledgling startup ecosystem.
The show will be aired every Saturday on the national television. Vietnam is the 41st country to import the Japanese-origin reality show.
In the US, more than 100 deals were made from the TV series, totaling over $100 million. The funding also amounted to some $160 million in the UK and $95 million in Canada.
Earlier this year, the Philippines launched a similar competition show called The Final Pitch, after some local stakeholders prepared shooting for another programme, I’m In, late last year.
The four investor judges of Shark Tank Vietnam are Nguyen Xuan Phu, chairman of household appliance provider Sunhouse, Tran Anh Vuong, CEO of SAM Holdings, Pham Thanh Hung, vice chairman of property developer CEN Group, and Thai Van Linh, VinaCapital’s head of strategy and operation.
The programme has also invited guest judges including four seasoned entrepreneurs from different sectors.
The majority of Vietnamese startups are pre-seed and seed stage companies. Venture capital investors who are present in the country include 500 Startups, ESP Capital, as well as FPT Ventures-backed VIISA accelerator and Topica Founder Institute.
Vietnam is also forming a couple of angel investment clubs but their activity remains fragmented.
A Topica Founder Institute report last year showed that over 27 per cent of the total deal counts in 2016 were transactions worth less than $500,000. In terms of value, seed investments accounted for 30 per cent of the total landscape, while angel investments made up only 4 per cent.