Startup investments in Vietnam - statistics & facts
Southeast Asia has emerged as the latest startup hub of the world, ranking behind only the United States, China, and India in the number of unicorns. Within this region, Vietnam has proven to have a fast-growing startup sector and is potentially the next startup nation to watch out for. The growth of this sector has been characterized by a growing number of investors and the value of investments in Vietnamese startups.
Overview of startup investments in Vietnam
Vietnam’s startup funding passed the one billion U.S. dollars mark for the first time in 2021, reaching a total value of over 1.4 billion U.S. dollars, which was more than half of the private investment amount recorded in the country in the same year. This amount of funding was spread across an all-time-high number of deals of 165 investments. The positive development of the investment waves into Vietnamese startups is also reflected in the increasing number of larger investment deals. For instance, around two-thirds of the total startup funding value in 2021 was from deals with a minimum value of 50 million U.S. dollars, equaling the combined investment value of deals of this size from 2018 to 2020. Retail technology and fintech were the leading categories for startup investments in recent years, with e-commerce marketplaces and digital payment projects being the most well-funded among all tech startup segments in the country.
Despite the emergence of various successful startups, the Vietnamese startup ecosystem is still in the early stage of development. The country has a modest, albeit slowly increasing, number of domestic startup investors with. The majority of the financial backers of Vietnamese startups have been foreign funds, mainly from other Asian countries and North America. In 2021, Singapore led with the number of venture capital funds invested in startups, while the United States was the country of origin for almost half of the unicorn startup investors in Vietnam.
Vietnamese unicorns and investment outlook
As of 2022, Vietnam had four startups that have achieved unicorn status among almost four thousand startups. The unicorn list included the multimedia company VNG, one of Southeast Asia’s first unicorns, two fintech startups: VNLife and MoMo e-payment service, and a blockchain game creator called Sky Mavis. These unicorns also attracted the largest amount of investments within Vietnam’s startup sector in recent years through various funding series led by international investors. On the other hand, to further foster the ongoing investment flow, Vietnam still has a long way to go to establish an investor- and startup-friendly ecosystem. By finalizing the necessary legal frameworks demanded by entrepreneurs and funds alike, especially in the fintech and digital asset sectors, the country can boost the confidence of both domestic and foreign investors in making their investment decisions on Vietnamese startups.
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