Though Singapore remains Southeast Asia’s investment hub, vibrant start-up ecosystems are emerging across the region. The number of companies in Indonesia raising a first round of funding in 2017 rose more than 300% from 2012. Together, Indonesia and Vietnam generated 20% of the region’s private equity deal value over the past five years, and that percentage is likely to grow, along with deal value for the entire region. In a recent Bain & Company survey, 90% of investors said the hottest Southeast Asian markets outside of Singapore in 2018-19 will be Indonesia and Vietnam.
Suvir Varma is a senior advisor with Bain & Company’s Global Private Equity practice, based in Singapore. Alex Boulton is a principal in the firm’s Singapore office.