While Chinese venture capitals feel winter chill, the Southeast Asian startup scene rather looks optimistic. Silicon Valley venture capitals who once targeted China or India are now increasingly setting their eyes on Southeast Asia. 500 Startup, praised as one of the leading Silicon valley VCs investing in the region, is now boasting its own unicorns such as Singapore-based ride hailing app Grab as fruits from local investments into more than a hundred startups with its 25 million-dollar fund, named Durian Fund, raised in June, 2014.

Mainland-based VCs are also poised to target assets in this fast-growing region and are making aggressive expansion. Gobi Partners which was born in 2002 in China and entered SE Asian market in as early as 2010 recently launched a $14.5 million fund dedicated to early-stage SE Asia startups, partnered with Malaysia Venture Capital Management Berhard (MAVCAP), the country’s largest venture capital firm. This was after Gobi Partners successfully finished their $50 million USD fund for Series A investments.

Why are Chinese VCs investing in SE Asia?

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mjkim

MJ explores the startup community across a variety of industries. MJ is particularly interested in O2O and Big Data. MJ is based in Shanghai.