Chinese venture capital investors are shifting their focus to Indonesia after India closed its doors to them, helping to create a 55 per cent surge in tech investment in south-east Asia’s biggest economy in the first half of 2020. Shunwei Capital, launched by the founders of mobile phone maker Xiaomi, and BAce Capital, which is backed by the fintech giant Ant Group, both said they were pivoting from India to Indonesia.
Chinese VC and tech investors powered a tech boom in India, investing in many of the country’s leading start-ups, including payments company Paytm, meal delivery company Zomato and Byju’s, an education platform. But in April New Delhi unveiled sweeping rules targeting opportunistic Chinese takeovers, spooking investors and cutting off crucial funding for tech start-ups. Zomato, for instance, is yet to receive $100m in funding from Ant. Last week, India blacklisted 43 more Chinese apps.
Indonesia, the world’s fourth most populous country, already boasts the largest number of billion-dollar start-ups in south-east Asia, while global tech companies from Facebook to PayPal to Google have invested there this year.
The swell of interest from both US and Chinese investors has catapulted Indonesia ahead of its peers including Vietnam and Thailand in terms of valuations and fundraising levels and since India deemed as unattractive by Chinese investors, they might eye Indonesia for tech investment. In one example this month, south-east Asian technology company Grab this month led a $100m Series B round in local fintech company LinkAja.
(source: Financial Times)