Sansiri’s Siri Ventures makes investments in US VC Fifth Wall and two Singapore Startups

Tue Dec 4, 2018 - 8:17am UTC
Siri Ventures

Siri Ventures

4/12/2018 – Siri Ventures, a joint venture capital arm of Thai-listed property developer Sansiri Pcl and Siam Commercial Bank, announced that it has made several investments in California-based VC firm Fifth Wall Ventures and two Singaporean tech startups.

Jirapat Janjerdsak, the Chief Technology Officer of Siri Ventures reveals the news in a media conference on Monday, saying that the company’s investment in Fifth Wall will accelerate its discovery of potential property technology (proptech) startups worldwide.

Founded in 2016, Fifth Wall Ventures focuses on identifying tech startups and connecting them to large established real estate players who understand the importance of digital transformation.

According to its filings with the US Securities and Exchange Commission, the VC firm is currently looking to raise more than US$600 million for two additional vehicles after closing its debut US$212 million fund in May last year.

Besides Fifth Wall, Siri Ventures has also committed investments into Techmetric, one of the world’s two delivery robot developers and Neuron, an e-scooter developer.

Regarding these two investments. Jirapat explained that robots and e-scooters were emerging global trends in the property business and Sansiri has been the country’s first property developer to have adopted both in its project.

“We want to develop and utilize innovative technology and solutions to support our customers, Sansiri’s shareholders and ecosystem,” said Jirapat. “We have also developed home service applications to support modern living experiences, such as the pilot e-Scooters project at Sansiri’s 177 project.”

Sansiri is also currently experimenting with delivery robots in the Monument Sanampao condominium project while providing the e-scooter service at its Habito in T77 community and D Condo project in Chiang Mai.

“These investments aim to fulfill the requirement of Sansiri’s customers in all aspects as well as enhance the country’s property business with the proptech and living tech ecosystem,” he added.

So far, Siri Ventures has invested 300 million baht (about US$9.14 million) in startups and proptech fund. It plans to double its investment to 600 million baht (about US$18.29 million) in 2019, which will primarily be used in Series A or larger rounds of proptech startups and funds of funds.

Jirapat added the investment capital will also be used for upgrading Sandee robots to provide various services rather than parcel delivery, supporting the Thai startup ecosystem to be competitive in Asia and boosting partnerships with other organizations for research and development.

“These investments aim to fulfill the requirement of Sansiri’s customers in all aspects as well as enhance the country’s property business with the proptech and living tech ecosystem,” he added.

On top of that, the firm will also set up the Siri Ventures Private PropTech Sandbox in order to provide various aids, including mentorship and insight from various business units, grants, lab rooms, networking opportunities, and smart devices.

To date, Siri Ventures investment portfolio include Semtive, a developer of electric wind turbine for accommodation; Astralink, a developer of 3D technology application for controlling construction in real time; Onion Shack, a developer of voice command home service application; AppySphere, a home automation developer, and Farmshelf, a US-based startup.

This news is published on Reuters.

Vivian Foo is a reporter who writes about Southeast Asia’s technology and startup space. The entry point which led her to write about the startup ecosystem was her fascination of the dot-com boom. She is taking a deep dive into how the entrepreneurial mindset works and hopes to share the insights, innovation, and stories of the startups with her readers.