With an extensive background in early stage venture capital and a thorough understanding of both Eastern culture and Western business practices, Vickers is always keeping a keen eye out for opportunities with experienced management teams working in high growth sectors in China and other Asia-Pacific countries. Particularly, the firm looks out for companies that want to introduce proven Western technologies, products or services into Asian markets.
These are 3 key points that the firm takes into consideration when seeking out opportunities:
1. Investing in Asia-Pacific businesses that emulate successful business models in developed countries
2. Investing in companies in large Asian economies (such as India, Japan, and China), and concentrating in areas which have shown high growth and where the home market can serve as a launch pad
3. Identifying companies in developed economies (such as Korea, Singapore, Taiwan, and Japan) and concentrating in areas in which these countries exhibit world-class standards and are able to compete internationally
The following investment strategy has seen much success over the years, as evidenced from an illustrious portfolio past and present:
1. Focus on early stage investments
It can be difficult to source for and close deals in China, where there are cultural and language barriers to entry. The Principals' experience, reputation and knowledge grant them privileged access to the deals in China, thus helping the firm focus on true early stage investments, which have much greater upside.
2. Target high growth sectors
Vickers focuses on investments in industries with high growth potential. The 5 industry sectors primarily targeted will include: (i) Consumer, (ii) Media, (iii) Technology, (iv) Telecommunications, and (v)
Financial Services. The typical characteristics of these companies are expected to share most or all of the following characteristics:
strong management teams
markets with potential for outstanding growth
3. Seek out companies that wish to replicate Western technologies in Asia
The firm is well-equipped to identify the most viable ideas among the many alternatives and also advise on how best to implement the technology
4. Leverage the firm’s strong reputation with entrepreneurs
With an extensive experience investing in early stage venture capital deals in Asia, Vickers is often provided with with a “first look” at some of the most compelling and competitive next generation companies in the market. This helps the firm capitalize on opportunities in the volatile and time-sensitive environment of start-ups.
5. An intense, hands-on and technical approach
Vickers is a valuable partner that not only provides capital, but also truly understands the core technology and business of its portfolio companies. The Principals have the expertise and ability to utilize their technical knowledge, operational experience, investment expertise and extensive networks of relationships to help portfolio start-ups evolve and mature.
6. An extensive history of leading investments with global venture capital firms
Vickers' impressive reputation within the Asian venture capital community gives the firm unique access to high quality deal flow. This makes the firm an attractive partner for sophisticated global venture capital firms, many of whom invest in subsequent rounds.
7. Taking care to avoid identifiable risks
The team is fully aware of and sensitive to the inherent risks involved in early stage venture capital opportunities in emerging markets. Consequently, they are careful to invest capital in stages to ensure companies are achieving milestones and are progressing according to initial expectations. Risks to our investments are minimized by:
diversifying the portfolio by industry and geography
identifying management teams with a track record of success or exceptional talent and pedigree
investing in companies with proven technologies or a track record of design expertise
investing in areas of particular expertise
investing in companies targeting sectors primed for rapid growth or disruption
diversifying by year of investment so that the portfolio is resistant to particular trends or technology issues associated with a particular year
Vickers' investment process is disciplined and detailed, with each step of the process guided by the expertise of the Principals, who all have a formidable combined wealth of experience in building early stage Asian businesses.
The chart below illustrates our investment process at a glance.