Gree Ventures raises US$67 million for its latest, oversubscribed fund

Tue May 23, 2017 - 7:05am GMT+0000
Gree Ventures raises US$67 million for its latest, oversubscribed fund
From left: Gree Ventures CEO Yusuke Amano and partner Tatsuo Tsutsumi

Japanese venture capital firm Gree Ventures has hit the final close of its second vehicle AT-II Investment Limited Partnership at an oversubscribed US$67 million.

The fund was first launched in April last year and initially target to close at US$60 million.

Gree Inc., the parent company of Gree Ventures which is involved in the Japanese gaming and social networking industry is one of the main investors for the second fund.

While other limited partners also include top Japanese corporate and financial institutions, such as the Organization for SMEs and Regional Innovation (Japan) and members of the Mizuho Financial Group including Mizuho Bank, Ltd., Mizuho Securities Principal Investment Co., Ltd., and Mizuho Capital Co., Ltd.

Similar to its first vehicle launched in 2014, Gree Ventures latest fund will still invest in the seed to Series A stage of startups in Japan and Southeast Asia, in addition to seeking new investment opportunities in India.

“India is a new market for us with this second fund, and hence we want to be more involved there just like what we did for Southeast Asia in the first fund,” said Nikhil Kapur, the investment manager at Gree Ventures.

In fact, Gree Ventures have already made two investments in India with Flyrobe and PopXO, while closing in on a third investment.

Despite that, Kapur explained that most of the fund will still be distributed among Japan and Southeast Asia, given that the venture firm is still not familiar with the Indian market.

Beside, Gree Ventures is looking to invest in not more than 30 startups across Asia with ticket sizes ranging from US$500,000 to US$3 million. This will enable Gree to lead rounds in the companies where it is deploying capital, while maintaining sufficient time for each startups.

“The size of the fund appears small to a lot of people for doing pan-Asia investments,” Kapur said. “But for us, the size is dependent on what we feel are deployable and return back to our LPs, instead of being based on how much management fee we want to earn.”

At present, Gree Ventures’ new vehicle has already invested in 10 startups, which include Ayopop and PopXO, to name a few.

Ayopop is a Jakarta-based startup that provides utilities and bill payment services to the underbanked population of Indonesia, while Delhi-based PopXO claims to be India’s largest female-targeted content platform.

While considering an investment, the firm lays emphasis on five major factors – the problems it is trying to solve, market potential, solution its is providing, the team, and exit strategy.

“Our fund philosophy is pretty simple,” explained Kapur. “We invest in founders and companies that will be the next set of large internet businesses in Asia while encouraging cross-border collaboration within the region.”

Led by Yusuke Amano and Tatsuo Tsutsumi, Gree Ventures has made more than 40 investments, since its launch about 5 years ago. The firm invests in the broader internet and mobile sector, and currently manages assets worth US$120 million.