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Finance

Singapore's Quest Ventures secures first close of $50m fund

Southeast Asian startups to be a focus of institutionally backed investments

Quest Ventures has been actively deploying capital in Vietnam and Singapore. (Hanoi, Vietnam)   © AP

SINGAPORE -- Singapore-based venture capital group Quest Ventures has secured the first close of its $50 million fund, according to a statement.

More than half of the target corpus has already been raised with its limited partners (LPs) comprising Temasek's Pavilion Capital, Kazakhstan's sovereign wealth fund subsidiary QazTech Ventures, and multiple family offices and entrepreneurs from around the world.

Quest Ventures Asia Fund II is Quest's first institutionally backed fund. Its previous fund was invested out of the personal capital of James Tan, its managing partner and co-founder of Nasdaq-listed Chinese e-commerce company, 55tuan.

Quest Ventures will target early-stage startups in Southeast Asia and emerging Asia, and sees itself expanding into markets such as Indonesia, Myanmar and the Philippines. It has been actively deploying capital in Singapore and Vietnam, with its portfolio including names like Carousell, ShopBack, 99.co, Carro, StyleTheory, SGAG/ MGAG/ PGAG, Glife and Xfers.

"As the digital economy matures across the world, the venture capital industry in Asia is now poised to play a mainstream role to bring the public and private markets closer. Besides robust financial returns, investors look for value creation derived from business models built on strong fundamentals...We are humbled by the belief that our investors have in us," said James Tan, managing partner at Quest Ventures.

QazTech Ventures was recently reported to be committing $10 million to the fund, making Quest Ventures its first Asian investment on an LP basis. Its participation will see Quest Ventures roll out a Kazakh startup acceleration program called Kazakhstan Digital Accelerator to nurture tech startups in Kazakhstan and Central Asia over the next three years.

"This partnership with Quest Ventures and Pavilion Capital will enable Kazakhstani start-ups to secure important investments, improve competencies, and gain access to global markets," said Adil Nurgozhin, Chairman of the Board of Directors at QazTech Ventures, the Kazakhstan sovereign wealth fund.

Quest Ventures has been steadily expanding its team to manage the growth of its venture business. In March 2019, it appointed two partners - Goh Yiping and Jeffrey Seah - to oversee its portfolio of over 40 companies.

According to Quest Ventures' website, the company also runs innovation labs and corporate accelerators, serving a global list of clients such as Nissan Motor, VMWare, Yahoo, HP, Tencent, and Coca-Cola.

For the original story from DealStreetAsia, click here.

DealStreetAsia is a financial news site based in Singapore that focuses on corporate investment activity in Southeast Asia and India. Nikkei recently announced the acquisition of a majority stake in the company.

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