New private equity firm Asia Partners eyes South-east Asia startups

New private equity firm Asia Partners eyes South-east Asia startups

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3 -min read
Listen to this article

GROWTH equity investment firm Asia Partners has opened its doors in Singapore to focus on rapidly growing technology businesses in South-east Asia with pan-regional aspirations.

It plans to make investments in the US$20 million to US$100 million range, or what is known as the "Series B or C gap" between early-stage venture capital and public capital markets, the private equity firm said on Friday.

The firm's five co-founders are former Sea group president Nick Nash, Oliver Rippel, Pitra Harun, Kien Nguyen, and Vorapol Supanusonti. The firm’s advisory board is chaired by former Temasek Holdings president Hsieh Fu Hua.

Each co-founder has a combination of investment and operational experience, with some fluent in Bahasa Indonesia, Vietnamese and Thai, the firm said.

Co-founder and managing partner Mr Nash was most recently the group president of South-east Asia Internet company Sea, which is listed on the New York Stock Exchange. He was also the former head of South-east Asia at General Atlantic, where he spent a decade as a growth equity investor, co-founded the Singapore office and led the firm’s investment in Sea.

Mr Rippel, co-founder and partner, was most recently chief executive for all business-to-consumer e-commerce investment for Internet group and technology investor Naspers. He was also previously a senior executive with eBay for nearly a decade across South-east Asia, Europe and North Asia.

Co-founder Mr Harun is also the firm’s director and Indonesia country head, and was most recently head of digital goods at Indonesian e-commerce company Bukalapak. He was previously with Patamar Capital, and a member of Bain & Company’s Private Equity Group in South-east Asia.

Mr Nguyen, co-founder and Vietnam partner, was previously an independent member on Vinamilk’s board, a Vietnamese consumer company. He also held remits at Temasek Holdings, OCBC Bank, Commonwealth Bank of Australia and Credit Suisse, and has been advising local and foreign investors in Vietnam investments since 2008.

Co-founder and managing director Mr Supanusonti was most recently a senior executive at Sea, and was previously an investor at private equity firm TPG, growth equity firm General Atlantic and investment company Temasek Holdings.

The firm’s advisory board consists of former US deputy secretary of state Richard Armitage, Wilmar International chairman and chief executive Kuok Khoon Hong, and Kerry Sulkowicz, founder and managing principal of the Boswell Group.

Current and former executives from General Atlantic, Facebook, Capital Group, Google Asia Pacific, non-profit Room to Read, among others, also sit on the advisory board.