In Focus
FINANCIAL SERVICES | Staff Reporter, Hong Kong

Homegrown startups raise record-high funding as total VC investment hits $425m in Q4

The $220m capital infusion for fintech startup WeLab was the ninth largest year-end deal in Asia.

Robust demand for innovative Hong Kong companies buoyed the year-end venture capital investment figures to over $425m in Q4, according to KPMG's Venture Pulse report.

Fintech startup WeLab led the pack after it raised $220m in its latest funding round and snagged the ninth spot in Asia’s top deals for Q4.

On demand delivery company Lalamove also raised $100m whilst the capital infusion worth $60m and $40m for Klook and Prenetics respectively were also notable financing deals. 

“VC investors from mainland China have shown a strong appetite for Hong Kong companies, which has helped drive investment activity. Heading into Q1’18, the outlook for Hong Kong is quite positive,” the report added. 

Overall, the cumulative value of Hong Kong deals accounted for 2.72% of Asia’s total raised funding of $15.6b in Q4. 

Two blockbuster $4b mega-deals from China – late stage VC round by Didi Chuxing and series-C round by Meituan-Dianping - led Asia’s year-end VC investment. 

“Chinese investors are highly focused on rapidly scaling and gaining market share so that they can quickly dominate the market. This is why we are seeing bigger and bigger acquisitions – many driven by China’s biggest tech giants, as they look to take out their competition in different sub and adjacent verticals,” said KPMG China head of Technology Hong Kong Irene Chu. 

Moving forward, regional VC scene is likely to be buoyed by a series of mega deals over the near term with autotech, AI and enterprise services projected to snag a market’s share of investment.

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