"EDITION 158"

Published: 9/18/2020

Good morning, it's Friday and we're at the end of yet another week. The IPO markets in the US are wide-open with Snowflake & JFrog going public yesterday, Sumo Logic today, and Unity tomorrow. Meanwhile Indian companies keep talking about going public but we probably aren't going to see many of those come to fruition anytime soon. Also got something exclusive today. The Product Folks is hosting India's largest Product conference next month about building High Growth Companies for India. Speakers include Harsha Kumar (Partner @ Lightspeed, ex-Ola), Miten Sampat (ex-Times Internet), Nithin Kamath (Zerodha) and others. They're also giving y'all a 25% discount (for 25 people) for their Delegate Pass (originally ₹749), which gives you access to the conference. Here's the link to conference & the coupon code is "AnmolTPS25" https://bit.ly/33uNKOO

  • https://tcrn.ch/3iI1Xyi: Lightspeed announces the official launch of its SE Asia operations
  • ➡️ Lightspeed announced the launch of it's South East Asia operations today in a blog post by Akshay Bhushan, partner on the India team. Along with him, partner Bejul Somaia (who helped set up Lightspeed India 10+ years ago), VP Pinn Lawjindakul (ex-Grab & Tiger Global) and Senior Investment Associate Marsha Sugan (ex-L Catterton & Goldman Sachs) complete the team.

    ➡️ The firm opened its Singapore Office in January, which will serve as a base for the team to meet with entrepreneurs in the region (after COVID travel restrictions end of course). Lightspeed has backed several companies in the region including Grab, Ula & NextBillions.Ai and some of the companies from its Indian portfolio also have a strong presence in the region.

    ➡️ The firm also raised a fairly large global opportunity fund of $1.4B to invest in India, China, Israel, Europe and SE Asia and the firm will probably deploy some of that capital in the region. In the last 10 years, Lightspeed has gone from investing from its global fund in India to raising 3 India-specific funds and if their story is similar in SE Asia, I would expect the firm to ramp up in hiring a larger investment team & region-specific funds.

    ➡️ I had previously talked about Agglomerators in a long-form piece last month and how Sequoia was India's largest Agglomerator investing in multiple stages in both India & SE Asia. With Lightspeed's recent successes in region & expansion- they might prove to be a competition to Sequoia's dominance over the next couple of years.

    2. https://bit.ly/2RzsCBq: MPL raises $75M from SIG Global

    ➡️ After Consumer Social & EdTech, Gaming cos seem to be heating up- fundraising wise with Winzo raising a Series B, Dream11 raising $225M and now MPL (it's rival) raising $75M in a Series B led by SIG Global with participation from Sequoia Capital, RTP Global and others.

    ➡️ The company, founded in 2018, has now raised 3 institutional rounds totaling $110M, while the company is now valued at $340-350M. The company works with 3rd party developers and publishes its games on the platform where users can participate in skill based games & win cash prizes.

    ➡️ Some of the 60+ games on the platform include cricket, puzzles, chess and crossword with over 60M players. The company has also signed on as a sponsor for both KKR and RCB (both teams in the IPL) and will likely see an upsurge of users & activity on the platform during the upcoming IPL season.

    ➡️ I think the recent couple of companies in the gaming space have shown that you don't necessarily need to build game studios to build a gaming company in India. Platforms that enable different type of gaming can be equally or more lucrative and shows that India's young audience is hungry (and maybe a bit bored) for gaming on their phones and on the web.

    Feedback & ❤️ always appreciated BONUS (Tweet of the day): https://twitter.com/bankonbasak/status/1306698525892177921

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