Beenext closes $110 mn fund, to back early-stage startups in India, Southeast Asia

Beenext closes $110 mn fund, to back early-stage startups in India, Southeast Asia
Photo Credit: VCCircle
16 Jun, 2020

Singapore-based venture capital firm Beenext has closed a $110 million (Rs 837 crore at current exchange rates) fund to invest in early-stage technology startups in India and Southeast Asia.

About half of the Beenext Emerging Asia Fund will be allocated for India investments in sectors such as ecommerce, fintech, healthtech, agritech, edutech, artificial intelligence and data technology domains, as per a statement. 

“BEENEXT has always believed in building businesses together with founders and fellow local co-investors to have a lasting impact. We look forward to co-creating and growing together with more start-ups in India,” Teruhide Sato, founder and managing partner of Beenext, said.

The company has also announced the launch of another fund with a $50 million (Rs 380 crore) corpus, which will be used to back software-as-a-service (SaaS) businesses in Japan, the statement said.

Limited partners of these funds include institutional investors in the US along with Japanese corporations, global family offices and entrepreneurs.

Founded in 2015, Beenext primarily focuses on Southeast Asia, India and Japan, and has invested in over 180 companies globally. It has backed 72 Indian startups so far, including property listings portal NoBroker, vehicle marketplace Droom, payments startup BharatPe, neo-bank Open, digital gaming startup Mobile Premier League, mobile-first video blogging platform Trell and micro-delivery grocery startup MilkBasket.

Despite the Covid-19 pandemic-induced economic slowdown and weak consumer sentiments in the retail segment, several venture capital firms have managed to raise capital to support their portfolio startups. 

Last week, early stage venture capital firm Arkam Ventures announced the first close of its debut fund with a target corpus of Rs 700 crore. It received commitments of Rs 325 crore for the first close. 

Earlier this month, Houston, Texas headquartered real estate firm Nitya Capital signed a partnership deal and infused an undisclosed amount in Iron Pillar Holdings, which runs an eponymous venture capital fund that invests in mid-stage technology firms in India. 

Info Edge India, the parent entity of jobs classified portal, plans to raise $50 million from limited partners outside the group. This is half of the total corpus of $100 million that it aims to raise for its venture capital fund Info Edge Venture Fund over the next three years.

Last month, TechCircle reported that Bengaluru based venture capital firm Exfinity Ventures raised Rs 80 crore as part of the first close of its third fund. Around the same time, Utsav Somani, the India head of San Francisco-based investment crowdfunding platform AngelList, launched a micro venture capital fund called iSeed

In May, ADQ, formerly known as Abu Dhabi Development Holding Company, launched a new venture capital fund to invest in early stage businesses in India and Southeast Asia. 

In the same month, World Bank arm International Finance Corporation (IFC) committed an equity investment of $10 million to Endiya Partners Fund II, the Hyderabad based venture capital firm focused on seed stage investments in emerging technology startups. 

Additionally, Singapore-based venture capital firm Antler announced its foray into the India market and hired Urban Ladder co-founder Rajiv Srivatsa as a partner to lead its operations in the country. The company aims to raise a $50 million India-focussed fund and invest in 40 startups in its first year. 

In April, New York headquartered venture capital firm Lightspeed Venture Partners announced the close of its $1.5 billion Lightspeed Opportunity Fund, which it expects to invest in breakout portfolio companies across geographies. 

India focused fund Orios Venture Partners also announced raising Orios Select Fund I to invest in post-Series B rounds in portfolio companies.