SINGAPORE: Koh Boon Hwee, one of Singapore’s prominent executives, is teaming with four fellow investors to try and raise US$100mil for a new venture firm targeting South-East Asia.
Koh, former chairman of DBS Group Holdings Ltd and Singapore Telecommunications Ltd, and his partners think the time is right to start a new venture capital firm, despite challenges from the coronavirus pandemic. They’ll target early-stage investments in fintech, consumer internet, enterprise software, logistics, healthcare and education.
Altara Ventures is launching as China’s tech behemoths expand into South-East Asia in the face of growing hostility from the United States and other major markets.
Tencent Holdings Ltd has picked Singapore for its beachhead beyond China, joining rivals Alibaba Group Holding Ltd and ByteDance Ltd in the race to build up a global presence closer to home.
“The level of international investments into South-East Asia is going to increase even more with ongoing global trade dynamics between geopolitical powers, ” said Dave Ng, one of the new firm’s five general partners. “That’s going to continue to boost the ecosystem here.”
Ng and Gavin Teo previously worked at B Capital, Facebook Inc co-founder Eduardo Saverin’s venture capital house.
The other three partners are Koh, Tan Chow Boon and Seow Kiat Wang, who founded Omni Industries Ltd, an electronics components maker acquired by Celestica Inc in 2001. The trio has backed more than 100 companies, including Razer Inc, and ran private equity firm Credence Partners Pte.
“We are former entrepreneurs, business builders and seasoned investors and know what it takes to scale and exit, ” said Koh, who spent over a decade on the board of Singaporean state investment firm Temasek Holdings Pte. — Bloomberg
Did you find this article insightful?