Temasek invests $90m in 4 venture capital firms here

Government investment company Temasek Holdings has pumped $90 million into four local venture capital (VC) firms this year, to help fledgling start-ups expand their business operations.

They are: NSI Ventures, Monk's Hill Ventures, Jungle Ventures and Golden Gate Ventures. Temasek did not disclose the investment sums in each case.

Mr Ong Beng Teck, managing director of Temasek's enterprise development group, said the firms will use these funds for hiring, marketing, opening new offices overseas and other activities. Each start-up can receive from $2 million to as much as $20 million.

Mr Ong said that the VC funds Temasek invested in have, in turn, attracted other investors.

This is "a clear signal of investor confidence in the potential of the VC market in Singapore and South-east Asia", he told The Straits Times.

NSI Ventures partner Hian Goh said Temasek is one of a number of institutional investors it is working with "to capture the early-stage venture capital opportunity in Singapore and South-east Asia".

It has raised a US$50 million (S$71.6 million) fund and its investments this year include online reservation system Chope and e-grocer Redmart.

The growing number of start-ups here and in the region prompted Golden Gate Ventures to raise a bigger fund of US$50 million, up from its first fund of about US10 million.

Its partner Vinnie Laurie said it also wanted to take advantage of opportunities for bigger investments.

Apart from Temasek, its fund's investors include Facebook co-founder Eduardo Saverin; Monitor Capital Partners, a European firm which manages funds from wealthy families; and Far East Ventures, the venture arm of property developer Far East Organization.

Golden Gate has invested in more than 25 start-ups in seven Asian countries. These have created more than 500 jobs and are set to pull in more than US$60 million in revenue this year.

VC firm Jungle Ventures hopes to raise $100 million and has already secured $65 million. The investors include Mr Satia Narjadin, managing director of Global Orion Holdings, and the Thakral Group.

The new fund aims to invest in more than 20 technology start-ups here and in the region. It will focus on areas like e-commerce, financial Technology and big data.

Last year, Temasek invested $100 million in its unit, Vertex Venture Holdings, to do the same.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 05, 2015, with the headline 'Temasek invests $90m in 4 venture capital firms here'. Print Edition | Subscribe