Yeah1 becomes the most successful deal among Vietnamese startups

By Viet Hung - Jan 20, 2019 | 02:32 AM GMT+7

TheLEADERBeing the first media company in Vietnam to be listed on the stock exchange, Yeah1 has made the largest successful divestment deal ever when VinaCapital got the return up to $127 million from its only $3 million investment in Yeah1.

Desiring to help startups get a better overview and judge the potential of the market in the future, Topica Founder Institute (TFI) has published an annual report on the investment in Vietnam’s startups in 2018.

The report showed that the total investment in Vietnamese startups now has reached up to $889 million, three times higher than the previous year. At the same time, 2018 witnessed 92 investments in Vietnam’s startups, similar to 2017, and nearly doubling 2016 in terms of number of deals (50 investment deals worth $205 million).

In particular, the highlight of 2018 is that Vietnam continued to receive "huge" investment deals when the top 10 transactions brought in $734 million, accounting for 83 per cent of the total agreed value including $30-million investments in Yeah1, Sendo and Topica and seven other undisclosed deals.

Most notably, Yeah1 - Vietnam's first media company was listed on the stock exchange and VNG has become Vietnam's first "unicorn" startup in the field of technology, with valuations up to $1.2 - $1.5 billion.

M&A deals of startups in the last year were also very bustling such as Grab’s acquisition of Moca, Sea’s acquisition of Foody and Giaohangtietkiem, etc.

Yeah1 is the most successful deal among Vietnamese startups
TFI's annual report on the investment in Vietnam’s startups in 2018

TFI’s report also stated that the six sectors which are currently attracting the most investments include Fintech ($117 million), E-Commerce ($104 million), TravelTech ($64 million), Edtech ($54 million), Logistics ($54 million) and online Real Estate ($47 million).

As for the field of ride-hailing, Vietnamese startups like FastGo, Vato and newcomer Be Group have successfully raised funding to compete with foreign rivals like Grab and Go-Jek. Be Group, founded by Tran Thanh Hai, was thought to have raised hundreds of millions of US dollars.

Another good sign is that last year, startups witnessed the emergence of many domestic venture capital funds such as VietCapital Ventures, Startup Viet Partners, Teko Ventures. Vingroup's investment fund Vingroup Ventures announced the investment budget of $300 million, $100 million of which VinaCapital Ventures accounts for.

Meanwhile, Vietnamese’s existing venture capital funds such as ESP Capital, 500 Startups and VIISA continue to boost their operations with 32 deals in 2018, accounting for 60 per cent of the pre-seed and seed investments.