Peng is always honest and to the point, I like the last line in the part I highlighted.
This is not a fly-in game.
If I’m a VC who wants to come into Southeast Asia, what trends should I look out for? I think more important than the trends is what you need to do. If you’re an existing VC in some other geography, you would want to look for people who understand the local scene and know entrepreneurship.
Southeast Asia has several countries. One advantage of the region is that most of its cities are used to international businesses. So, it’s not as difficult as it was in China 10 or 15 years ago. VCs would be flying in from Hong Kong and, especially, from The Valley, and that worked for maybe a year or two. But then it stopped working because you were not there when the contacts were being made.
It’s the same thing with Southeast Asia. There are a lot of local nuances that you probably don’t understand, and that’s why you need a local person for each country. This is not a fly-in game.