The Malaysian venture capital scene today saw the entry of another high-profile firm. Golden Gate Ventures—one of Singapore’s most established VC firms—announced the start of its Malaysian chapter with a new office in Kuala Lumpur and the injection of RM75 million into the Malaysian startup ecosystem.
For Golden Gate Ventures, Malaysia is the third and largest location in Southeast Asia after their presence in Singapore and Indonesia. Currently the firm already have under their portfolio several Malaysian names including GoQuo, ServisHero, Carousell, Codapay, and Homage.
Explaining the reason behind their expansion to Malaysia, managing partner Vinnie Lauria explained that the main impetus was to solidify Golden Gate Ventures’ presence in an ecosystem with plenty of potential.
“Several factors make this country an excellent place for technology startups,” Vinnie said. “We already have good Malaysian tech companies in our portfolio and we want to find more.”
Malaysia, Truly The Perfect Testing Ground
According to the Golden Gate Ventures team, Malaysia—as the second-most developed economy in SEA—currently possessed the highest number of IPOs and a high rate of digital penetration.
This only proved that the country now has a strong infrastructure in place to further develop an already healthy startup ecosystem.
“Malaysia’s rising middle class and business sectors are full of tech-savvy, mobile-savvy users who create demand for cutting-edge IT products and services,” Vinnie commented. “Malaysia’s new government, after winning the historic elections this year, is another positive.”
Additionally, the team also pointed towards the racial diversity and range of cultural influences in Malaysia, labelling them as strategic elements.
For partner Justin Hall, this diversity means that Malaysia could be treated as a microcosm of the whole of Southeast Asia, and could act as the perfect testing ground for businesses looking to expand into the rest of Southeast Asia.
“With the diversity of its people, culture and economy, Malaysia is truly Asia,” said Justin. “Thus it makes it the perfect platform for businesses to expand across ASEAN as the products and services created for this market can take advantage of the country’s in-built potential for scalability.”
This regional expansion by Golden Gate Ventures follows a recently closed US$100 million fund and the opening of a specialised fund targeted at blockchain tech and digital currency startups.
For the interest of potential investees, Golden Gate Ventures make all their investments into early-stage companies that focus on IT and Internet/mobile tech.
For more information on Golden Gate Ventures, visit their website.
Feature Image Credit: Golden Gate Ventures