US$291 million invested in Vietnamese startups

By Minh An - Feb 12, 2018 | 08:40 AM GMT+7

TheLEADERThe number of startups invested doubled after one year, reaching 92 enterprises.

According to a report published by Topica Founder Institute (TFI), the total amount of Vietnam's startup investments in 2017 was US$291 million, up 42 per cent compared to 2016.

US$64 million from Sea Group invested in food & beverage sharing platform named Foody was the largest investment in 2017.

According to Sea Group's prospectus when it listed shares in the United States in July 2017, this group acquired 82 per cent of stake of Foody.

Established in 2012, Foody has become one of the Vietnam's most successful startups in the field of food delivery and hotel reservations. Foody also received investments from Cyberagent Ventures, Pix Vine Capital and Tiger Global Investment. After its success in Vietnam, Foody plans to expand to Indonesia and Thailand.

The number of start-up enterprises invested in 2017 increased

Excluding Foody, Sea Group also invested in two other companies in Vietnam including intermediary payment company named VNPay and logistics player with a total value of US$50 million.

The US$54 million investment in Tiki which was funded by South Korea's STIC Investment and China's was another significant acquisition in the startup community last year. Notably, is a major e-commerce platform in China and the Alibaba's rival.

Launched in 2010, Tiki was originally a book sale website and then, it became one of the fastest growing e-commerce startups in Vietnam. This company received initial investments from Seedcom, Cyber Agent Venture and Sumitomo Corp in 2013.

In early 2016, VNG Corporation, a company specializing in digital content, online entertainment, social networking and e-commerce, invested US$17 million to buy Tiki's 38 per cent of stake. However, according to financial results of VNG, Tiki's operations continued to suffer losses.

According to information from TFI's reports, e-commerce rose on top of the scene with 21 deals in 2017, approximately of US$83 million in value. It was followed by foodtech with a total deal size of US$65 million. Fintech steeped back to the third place with 8 deals, contributing US$57 million.