500 TuksTuks to raise US$20 million for second vehicle

500 TuksTuks to raise US$20 million for second vehicle


18/6/2018 – 500 TuksTuks, a Thailand-focused micro fund has last Friday launched its second vehicle as per an SEC filing.

According to the SEC filing, the firm is yet to sign on any investor to the fund so far, but it might count the backing of several large companies including Saha Pathana, Inter-Holding Plc, TCP Group Central Group, Vacharaphol Company and Southeast Insurance.

This fund aims to raise US$20 million in capital to back 150 startups, including a potential unicorn, that is a startup which valuation has grow to at least US$1 billion.

Krating Poonpol, the managing partner of 500 TuksTuks said, “The Fund II would help to create new economic growth engine for the country, especially in the targeted S-curve industries.”

Thailand has identified 10 key S-curve industries, which include electronics, robotics, aviation, digital, agriculture technology, logistics, and next-generation automotive as future new-growth engines.

Besides, Krating also added that the Fund II will also accelerate the development of the startup industry in CLMV countries: Cambodia, Laos Myanmar, and Vietnam.

TuksTuks 500 was launched in April 2015. Its first fund, 500 TuksTuks I achieved its final close at US$15.4 million in early 2017, which was 50 percent higher than its initial target of US$10 million. It was mostly used to invest in the seed funding stage for 50 startups.

About 47 percent of the startups funded by 500 TukTuks went on to raise almost 7 billion baht ($210 million), said Krating, adding that the micro VC firm will expand investment in Series A funding for digital disruptive technology and deep tech startups that rely heavily on research and development.

Moving forward, 500 TukTuks II will cover funding from seed round up to Series A. It also plans to expand its portfolio in Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, and Vietnam.

The micro VC firm aims to build at least seven local startups that could reach more than US$100 million valuations by 2023, making Thailand more attractive to larger investors. Among the startups that 500 TukTuks has invested include GIZTIX, Pomelo, Baania, Finnomena and Omise.

“Our mission,” Kranting said, “is to create one or two iconic tech companies from Thailand that come from our portfolios. We want to create the future leaders for the country.”

SPi Global acquires e-knowledge center Scope to widen KPO

SPi Global
SPi Global acquires e-knowledge center Scope to widen KPO

SPi Global

15/6/2018 – Philippines-based technology and data science firm SPi Global has announced the complete acquisition of knowledge process outsourcing (KPO) firm Scope e-knowledge Center from India’s PE-backed Quattro Group.

No financial details of the transaction were revealed, but SPi Global said the acquisition is part of its plan to expand in the content technology and knowledge service industry.

Commenting on the deal, Scope president Tram Venkatraman described the acquisition as a highly strategic step forward and a good move for the company.

Founded in 1987, Scope e-Knowledge Center is based in Chennai. The company provides content and data enrichment solutions to publishers, information providers, and professional societies.

It claims to be specialized in the areas of taxonomy and ontology, abstracting, indexing, health science solutions, and database services with their content sourced from delivery centers in Chennai and Salem in Tamil Nadu, India.

Scope is one of the five businesses operating under Quattro Group, whose investors include PE firm Olympus Capital Holdings Asia, VC firm Walden International, and asset management firm The DE Shaw Group.

SPi, on the other hand, provides specialized business process outsourcing services to research and education publishers.

Their services cover the entire value chain for publishers, from author support and content development through copyediting and typesetting to digitization, database management, and database analytics.

“The deal will reinforce our ongoing efforts to build a sophisticated suite of solutions for data-discovery and smart content in STM publishing, healthcare and a wide spectrum of professional content segments,” said Ratan Datta, the President and CEO of SPi Global.

SPi serves its clients in 14 languages through 12 delivery operations internationally and employs nearly 15,000 people in the Philippines, India, United States, China, Nicaragua, and Vietnam.