SoftBank Opens its First Southeast Asia Office to Focus on SEA and China

SoftBank, the largest investment company originated from Japan is making plans to increase its investments in the Asia Pacific region. Rebranding is early stage investment Korea Ventures to Southeast Asia Ventures is the strategy they have deployed in order to do so. Southeast Asia is indeed a region with immense opportunities due to its large number of population and rapid technology development, proposing many different niches for entrepreneurs with keen eyes. As many people are aware of, a lot of big startup companies originated from the region. SoftBank Group attempts to diversify is focus on countries like Korea, Israel, China, and other countries in Southeast Asia.

Successfully establishing its first office in the Southeast Asia region, SoftBank’s focus now is to attempt to make the most of the potential and opportunity in Asia by working together with professionals in the necessary field from Shanghai and Singapore.

JP Lee, CEO and Managing Partner of SoftBank Ventures Asia has expressed his excitement regarding the opportunity to support entrepreneurs that can propose not only interesting but also bold and life-changing ideas. SoftBank offers access to SoftBank’s valuable community, resources, and network, which can truly give new entrepreneurs more insight and heighten their chance for success in their business journey.

He also added that SoftBank Ventures’ aim and goal is to be able to increase the speed of the Information Revolution. Currently, the firm is interested in the application of artificial intelligence (AI) for various industries that can drive growth in productivity and innovation.

Korea Ventures was launched by SoftBank in 2000. The focus of this project is on regions like Seoul, Beijing, and Tel Aviv in Israel. Seeing the rapid success, the Japanese group attempted to expand its reach to Asia, the US, Israel, and the EU. The focus of SoftBank is startups with base in information and communications technology.

A press release was held by the firm which delivered the information that SoftBank Ventures Asia will focus on discovering startups that are related to artificial intelligence and based on technology to first invest in and develop for more growth. $1.1 billion funds under its management were invested into 250 companies during the past 18 years.

One of SoftBank’s key investment is Tokopedia, an Indonesian-based e-commerce firm, one of the largest in the country if not in Southeast Asia in general; Moka, a fintech startup with headquarter in Indonesia; Mythic, the leading company in artificial intelligence chip based in Silicon Valley; Hyperconnect, video communication service operator, as well as SNOW from China that offers camera app that uses augmented reality to create interesting looks.

Singapore invested $26.7 million in Redmart, a Singapore based firm and Send.vm, a Vietnamese startup in its venture capital round back in 2018.

SoftBank Ventures Asia’s primary investment candidates are still in the earliest growth stage in the ICT industry that includes AI, IoT, as well as smart robotics. The firm now has a portfolio of startups in the internet, mobile services, e-commerce, hardware, software, as well as advertising and media.

Johnathan Hogan

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