(Travelstop) Simplifying Business Travel in Asia – MONEY FM 89.3 – Omny.fm

Super cool! Travelstop on the radio!

Simplifying Business Travel in Asia – MONEY FM 89.3 – Omny.fm

SoftBank: Vision or Delusion

Long PDF read analysing or pontificating Softbanks chance of success as a VC fund.

Very interesting.

On October 14, 2016, SoftBank shocked the world with the announcement of its $100 billion Vision Fund, which would focus on investing in late-stage technology companies. Within 7 months of the announcement, SoftBank had already cemented $93 billion in commitments. To put the unprecedented scale and speed of the Vision Fund into perspective—it took all US-based venture funds 4 years to raise $143 billion from 2014 to 2017.

In its short history, the Vision Fund has already led enormous financing rounds across the globe, from billion dollar plus investments in ride-sharing services like Uber to a $300 million investment in Silicon Valley’s dog-walking and dog-sitting app, Wag. In comparison, the median global VC deal size for late-stage companies was only around $11 million in 2017. The sheer amount of capital deployed has left the venture capital world stunned, with many questioning if competitive returns are possible at this massive funding scale.

At EquityZen, we decided to take a step back and analyze what it would take for the Vision Fund to deliver competitive returns.

How Noble Group, Commodity Trading Giant, Imploded – Bloomberg (Singapore)

Wonder how this will shake out.

Singapore usually stands for safe or if not safe – quite transparent in dealing with people or companies who have crossed the line.

Seems like harsher action needed to have been taken.

How Noble Group, Commodity Trading Giant, Imploded – Bloomberg:

As Noble’s troubles mounted, the role of Singapore’s regulators has come under scrutiny. In addition to running the exchange, Singapore Exchange Ltd. has front-line oversight and responsibility for maintaining fair, orderly and transparent markets as well as following up with companies to investigate allegations of irregularities. It’s backed by the Monetary Authority of Singapore, the de facto central bank of a city state that’s also a global financial center with a hard-earned reputation for probity.

In the case of Noble Group, allegations have come thick and fast, led by Iceberg Research, which says profits were inflated. The group — whose claims are rejected by Noble — is led by Arnaud Vagner, a former credit analyst at Noble in Hong Kong, where the trader was based before it moved to London, who recently dropped his self-imposed cloak of anonymity.

For this VC, being an investor wasn’t an obvious career choice

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.

For this VC, being an investor wasn’t an obvious career choice:

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.