Lightspeed Venture Partners Set Foot in Southeast Asia Backed by US$4B Recent Funding

Lightspeed Venture Partners will put recently raised funds of US$4 billion to use through its Southeast Asia operations

American venture capital firm Lightspeed Venture Partners has announced the launch of its Southeast Asia operations in a statement released yesterday.

Lightspeed Venture Partners’ Southeast Asia operations will be headquartered in the region’s tech and startup hub Singapore, which is also one of the firm’s key focus countries alongside Indonesia, the statement noted.

Further, the firm will be deploying funds from a pool of over US$4 billion that the firm had recently raised across its global funds, it added.

These include Fund XIII for early-stage investments with $890 million, Select Fund IV for growth-stage investments with $1.83 billion, and a $1.5 billion Opportunity Fund for breakout companies outside the U.S., according to an announcement by the firm in April this year.

“Southeast Asia is one of the world’s fastest-growing economies and startup ecosystems, and this is due in no small part to the region’s extraordinary entrepreneurial talent,” Partner, Lightspeed Venture Partners, Akshay Bhushan said in the statement.

“We believe the startup ecosystem will continue its significant expansion and are excited to partner with entrepreneurs as they build and scale disruptive companies,” he added.

Pinn Lawjindakul will be taking over the firm’s regional operations as Vice President, the statement said. Further, in addition to Bhushan, another Lightspeed Partner Bejul Somaia will also be joining the firm’s Southeast Asia operations, with Marsha Sugana as Senior Investment Associate.

While Lawjindakul joined Lightspeed Venture Partners in January this year, both Bhushan and Somaia were Partners at Lightspeed India for five and 12 years respectively. Sugana joined the firm in July this year.

Founded in 2000, Lightspeed Venture Partners is a multi-stage venture capital firm focused on enterprise and consumer markets.

So far, the firm has invested in over 400 companies worldwide, including unicorns such as edtech company Byju’s, proptech company OYO, self-driving vehicle maker Aurora, healthtech company Tempus, and mobile editing app developer Lightricks.

The statement noted that over 70% of its investments have been directed at early-stage startups. Lightspeed Venture Partner affiliates manage over $10.5 billion worldwide, with services in Silicon Valley, Israel, India, China, Southeast Asia, and Europe.

“Our mission at Lightspeed has stayed the same, even as our global presence has expanded from Silicon Valley, Israel and China to India, Europe and now Southeast Asia: to support bold entrepreneurs who are building tomorrow’s companies today,” Founder and Managing Director, Lightspeed Venture Partners, Ravi Mhatre said in the statement.

“Southeast Asia is undoubtedly one of the fastest-growing innovation ecosystems and we look forward to building deep, long-lasting relationships with founders and the broader tech community,” Mhatre further said.

Capitalizing on tailwinds due to rapid digitalization, the firm’s Southeast Asia operations will be focused on backing technological disruptions in the region through founders who are building new solutions categories and business models, the statement noted.

It aims to make seed, Series A and Series B investments ranging from $500,000 and $20 million, Economic Times reports.

In Southeast Asia, Lightspeed Venture Partners’ investment footprint includes Singapore-headquartered superapp Grab, Indonesian social commerce platform Chilibeli, Indonesian enterprise marketplace app Ula, Singapore-based B2B AI software developer NextBillion, and shipping gateway company Shipper.

“With a large, tech-savvy and young population, Southeast Asia is leading the charge in technology-driven innovation. We have a strong belief in the opportunities here and the capabilities that founders of this region have demonstrated,” Somaia noted in the statement.

“Our global footprint, combined with the local team’s expertise, will enable the region’s founders to better leverage global opportunities and we are thrilled to partner with them,” Somaia added.

Header image courtesy of Lightspeed Venture Partners

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