Venture Capital in South East Asia @ Golden Gate Ventures

  • Background

    “Every morning in Africa, a Gazelle wakes up. It knows it must run faster than the fastest Cheetah or it will be killed. Every morning a Cheetah wakes up. It knows it must outrun the slowest Gazelle or it will starve to death. It doesn’t matter whether you are a Cheetah or a Gazelle… when the sun comes up, you’d better be running.”
    ~ Christopher McDougall, Born to Run


    I am a partner at Golden Gate Ventures in Singapore. Golden Gate Ventures is an early-stage VC firm in Southeast Asia with over 25 investments to date. Golden Gate Ventures invests in internet & mobile startups regardless of sector: ecommerce to payments, mobile applications to SaaS platforms. Companies include online grocer RedMart.com, mobile payments platform Coda Payments, and webbased developer software Nitrous.io. Golden Gate Ventures has been ranked as a global Top 50 startup investor by Mattermark comparing over 300 incubators, accelerators, and VC firms based on web traffic, mobile downloads, employee count, and social media reach.


    Venture capital has showed and continues to show strong growth in South East Asia and has driven much of the increase in deal count in recent quarters of 2015. It helped push capital invested in South East Asia to US$3.7 billion.

  • Newsletter

    Every few weeks I will send out a Corporate Newsletter focused on Venture Capital. Corporates (or corporate venture capitalists) are getting more involved in tech startups at an early stage. Whether it's being a minority investor, strategic partner or acquirer, corporates have realised that tech startups are a way to expand into new markets, gain access to a new group of consumers, and integrate technology to build new services or expand existing ones. This newsletter will focus on developments in Southeast Asia, but will also report on current events and in the influence of global M&A in Asia as a whole


    A New Day. You can start a new day whenever you want. The middle of the day could be your start of the new day or in my case 4am in the morning as I go out to cycle before the Singapore heat starts to kick in. Today is a New Day for me because I have revamped my newsletter using Revue and I am personalizing the content a bit more. Besides sharing what’s happening on the M&A side of venture, I also want to share more personal experiences from my day to day job.



    The distinction between eCommerce and traditional commerce is becoming less obvious. eCommerce players open brick and mortar stores to market their brand, and traditional retailers look to acquire tech startups for their experience, knowledge and sometimes their brand. The horror stories of US retailers closing stores and not keeping up with innovation (see articles) are plentiful. Is there a similar trend in South East Asia? If we look at China (often called the future of shopping), 19.6% of the shoppers buys online (globally it’s 7.1%, measured in 2015). Interestingly enough South East Asia heads up the leaderboard when it comes to online shoppers that buy through social media (Thailand and Malaysia are respectively n0. 1 and 3 with 51% and 31%). These numbers are something for brick and mortar retailers to think about.



  • Good Reads

    My favourite articles and blog posts

    Quit social media your career may depend on it

    This article explains the effect of using social media in relation to your professional career.


    Good investors are guided by patterns not by trends

    This blog post is written by Justin Hall, Principal at Golden Gate Ventures. Justin's blogs have been picked up as essential reads by all major tech blogs in South East Asia.


    A Harvard philosopher’s argument for not loving yourself just as you are
    The importance of loving yourself is a common catchphrase among feel-good gurus and the subject of countless self-help books.But Harvard University’s Michael Puett argues that loving yourself—and all your flaws—can actually be quite harmful (original article on @QZ.com

  • Biography

    A brief overview of my personal & professional background

    I am a proud father of 2 children and married to my lovely wife Marijke. I studied Management and Control of information science. After my graduation, I worked briefly as a project manager at one of the largest insurance companies in the Netherlands, after which I started my own IT business. In 2007, I founded my own venture fund focused on Dutch SME’s before joining Golden Gate Ventures as a venture partner and later as a partner. As a former vice chairman of the Economic Development Board Rotterdam I have had various positions on a societal and administrative level. As a result of which I have been able to build an extensive international network.

    In 2011 and 2014 I studied Financial Analysis for Business Valuation, and Private Equity and Venture Capital at Harvard Business School in Cambridge. I have over 17 years entrepreneurial and managerial experience. I truly believe in a balanced life. I have various hobbies. Sports is one of my favorites. I was a member of the Dutch Karate Team for 3 years during my late teens. I love to run and trying to be a competitive cyclist. I ran the marathons of Rotterdam and New York and in 2016 I finished the marathon in Singapore. In June 2017 I was able to complete one of my life goals, to finish the Ironman 70.3 in Hawaii.

  • Media & Press

    An overview of my speaking engagements across South East Asia and the rest of the globe

    Speaking & press

    • Speaker at Slush Singapore/SWITCH 2016
    • Speaker at Communic Indonesia 2016 
    • Speaker at Millennial 20-20 Singapore 
    • Speaker and panel member at South Summit Madrid [video]
    • Keynote speaker at BDL Accelerate Lebanon [video]
    • Speaker and panel member at Tech Open Air Berlin [video]
    • Interview Bloomberg on Uber's rival in Asia [link]
    • Interview EMPEA on the rise of venture capital in APAC [link]
    • Interview Tech In Asia Indonesia [link]
    • Panel member at WebSummit Dublin
    • Speaker at General Assembly Singapore
    • Speaker at Echelon and Tech In Asia
    • Judge at Angelhack and YouthHack
    • Mentor at SPH Plug and Play 
    • Mentor at Sparklabs

    Publications & Workshops

    • Published an article in Nikkei Fintech about the current status of Fintech in South East Asia. The article was published on March 22, 2016. Please find the link to the article here
    • Fundraising 101 is one of the workshops I give to startups during tech conferences. It provides insights on fundraising strategies and provides an overview of active investors in South East Asia.

    & Interviews

    • Investing in Fintech in South East Asia is hosted by Finnovasia in Hong Kong and helps investors understand the lanscape of the Fintech Ecosystem in ASEAN
    • Quote in Bloomberg article about China's road to World Tech Domination which starts in South East Asia. 
  • Connect

    Feel free to send any comments or suggestions.  






This is my personal view and doesn't bla bla bla