19:05 | 06/11/2019 Investment
This marks Validus’ third Southeast Asian market following from Singapore in 2015, and Indonesia, where it successfully launched its Indonesian arm Batumbu in May 2019.
To meet the financing needs of SMEs in burgeoning industries, including manufacturing, real estate, construction, healthcare, consumer services, retail and wholesale trade, Validus Vietnam will partner with corporates to provide SME growth financing to their vendors and subcontractors. Pilot programmes with partners that are in the pipeline include Medicare Vietnam, the largest pharmacy, health, beauty and personal care retail group; and Unicons, a member of Coteccons Group, one of the leading private construction enterprises in Vietnam.
Validus Vietnam will operate using the same proven proprietary technology and credit scoring systems currently used in Singapore and Indonesia to provide Vietnam’s SMEs access to fast, reliable and affordable sources of growth financing. Built on the same validated processes, technology and robust credit algorithms, Validus Vietnam’s platform will be further adapted and tailored to cater to the unique needs of SMEs in the country.
Ms. Tran Thi Thuy Ha, Chief Business Officer of Validus Vietnam, with over 20 years’ local experience in banking and business financing said, “Helping our SMEs to grow will be crucial for Vietnam’s continued rise as a Southeast Asian economy. For this reason, I am delighted to be a part of the founding Validus Vietnam team to help plug this gap. Validus has a proven track record of operating in Singapore’s well-regulated financial services environment, and the fact that we are matching Validus’ strong compliance and technical rigour around governance and risk management and bringing it to Vietnam’s rapidly growing and regulated SME financing space is a win-win scenario.”
Validus hopes to replicate this same positive social impact across Southeast Asia, including in Vietnam, by addressing the domestic unmet financing gap. The SME financing gap in Southeast Asia is estimated to be US$175 billion per consulting firm McKinsey in 2016. In Vietnam, SMEs make up 97 per cent of the total enterprises, but they only account for 22 per cent of total bank lending.
In July 2019, Validus announced its plans as one of the first Singapore fintechs to apply for a digital banking licence in Singapore, to deliver an inclusive, 360-degree solution for SMEs. Earlier in February 2019, Validus also raised S$20.5 million (US$15.2 million) in an oversubscribed Series B funding round led by Dutch public-private development bank FMO and Vertex Ventures.
|Led by Mr. Nikhilesh Goel, Co-Founder of Validus with over 14 years’ experience in debt and equity financing, portfolio management and value creation for SMEs both in Vietnam and across Southeast Asia, Validus Vietnam comprises a strong, local team, with significant experience in financial services, retail and commercial banking in the country.|