Early-stage startups can now tap on Fintech Angel Operators, a newly launched network featuring some 100 angel investors from fintech companies across Southeast Asia.
Several of these investors hold senior appointments in fintech companies such as Grab Financial, PayPal, Stripe and Remitly.
“Every individual in our network has proven operational expertise with top-tier fintechs in the region - they’re prepared to do the work and help founders accelerate their vision,” says Chia Jeng Yang, co-founder of Fintech Angel Operators.
Investors in the network are selected through an internal skills matrix that that assesses their capabilities in specific skills required to run a fintech. These include hiring, building a technical stack or fundraising.
Members of the network boast fintech operational expertise in Southeast Asia and are looking to invest angel-sized cheques into start-ups.
Capital from the network will be deployed collectively by investors interested in the deal via a standard angel investment structure. This could include a special purpose vehicle (SPV) entity or Angellist.
Startups operating in specific fintech verticals such as lending, remittance or payments can tap on capital from the group of operators.
They will also have a rolodex allowing founders to cherry-pick the right investors, notes Chia, who is also a principal at Saison Capital. The venture capital firm has been an early LP in venture funds like Beenext, Antler and Better Tomorrow Ventures.
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Keng Low, co-founder of the Fintech Angel Operators agrees that it is critical for startups to onboard investors who have actual operational experience.
“Whether you’re facing issues with developing your business model, how to approach and work with regulators or facing specific hurdles like regulation - you’ll want someone in your corner who can give strategic advice and solutions from real experience on what works in Southeast Asia,” adds Low, who is also a co-founder of venture capital firm Finantier.
The pitch and raise process starts with a call with the network and the startup’s founder. This will allow the startups to connect with relevant investors, while the latter can leverage on fellow-investors’ insights and perform their due diligence.
Fintech Angel Operators says it is already evaluating a number of deals and is looking to close its first investments in 3Q2021 ending in September.
The network’s founding team – who come from Saison Capital and Finantier – hope to nurture the startup ecosystem through their diverse yet complimentary backgrounds.
Saison Capital will brings its venture perspective to the table while Finantier is experienced in building Southeast Asia’s financial infrastructure for young startups and large financial enterprises.