Citi hosts webinar on fundraising and overseas IPOs for tech companies

October 15, 2021 | 08:00
The exclusive webinar focusing on fundraising and overseas listing considerations for tech companies in Vietnam was hosted by Citi Commercial Bank ASEAN on October 14.
Citi hosts webinar on fundraising and overseas IPOs for tech companies
The exclusive webinar on fundraising and overseas IPOs for Vietnamese tech companies

Attended by nearly 60 participants from more than 30 Vietnam based digital companies, the aim of the event was to provide a holistic approach to Citi’s clients on this topic from Citi’s perspective, coupled with clients sharing their fund raising journey, tech investors’ insights, and regulatory considerations.

The highlights of the event included experience sharing speeches from keynote speakers, an engaging Q&A segment and insightful panel discussion among distinguished guests.

“People, knowledge, technology, and the government’s open mindset are tipped to be the economy’s next growth engines as it transitions towards a medium-to-high income economy. Hence, Vietnam is well positioned and attractive for digital growth,” said Lin Hsiu Yi, head of Citi Commercial Bank, ASEAN and Singapore in her opening remarks.

Most guest speakers and participants agreed that Vietnam is currently witnessing accelerated digital growth, boosting the application of high technologies to adapt to the Fourth Industrial Revolution.

By 2025, the ASEAN digital economy is expected to account for 8.5 per cent of ASEAN GDP. Future growth will be driven outside the major areas. As Vietnam moves from a manufacturing hub to an innovation hub, the future of Vietnam lies beyond manufacturing and labour-intensive industries. Fintech, AI, e-commerce, and software will play a bigger role in the digital economy.

Tiki.vn, one of the largest e-commerce players in Vietnam, is a successful illustration for Vietnam as a land of opportunity for digital growth and transformation. “TIKI has a rare privilege in this market when we have chances to play chess with grandmasters who come from the local, regional, and global arena. In our journey of development, those grandmasters teach us how to play, how to transform our model and fund raising is one of the core competencies,” shared Khanh Ngo, Tiki's executive board director and group vice president in a dialogue with Vietnam Citi Commercial Bank head Shawn Khong during the event.

The dialogue was followed by an engaging panel discussion to exchange professional insights and experiences on fund-raising and initial public offering (IPO) strategies and alternatives from various perspectives.

There were also presentations from Tien Bui, partner and Chris Milliken, senior associate of Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP who shared their insights on legal and regulatory considerations for technology companies in preparing for an overseas listing.

“We now see a lot more founders in the Vietnamese market that are starting to think about building businesses much bigger than just the domestic market. I don’t think it is necessarily pre or post-pandemic, it is the maturity of the market that’s starting to change, and the accessibility of the capital to make people feel that they can raise enough to expand across the region,” said David Gowdey, managing partner of Jungle Venture.

James Perry, co-head of Technology, Citi Asia-Pacific Investment Banking added that, “It is impossible to grow a business without a huge vision but at the same time it is also important to carefully chart your journey step by step and be aware of the wide range of fund raising options available that would best help to achieve your strategic objectives at different growth stages.”

Most guest speakers and participants agreed that Vietnam is currently witnessing accelerated digital growth, boosting the application of high technologies to adapt to the Fourth Industrial Revolution.

With a young population who thrives on technology and social networks, growing domestic consumption, and a location in the heart of Asian economies, the next wave of digital transformation has the potential to propel Vietnam into Asia’s next high-performing economy.

“I am confident that Vietnam will have many more new 'unicorns' emerging in the near future and would like to emphasise that Citi is here to be your trusted adviser in any stage of your journey, to fulfill all your banking requirements, from cash management, foreign exchange to capital markets and fund raising to support your growth and expansion,” said Ramachandran A.S., Citi country officer-designate for Vietnam.

As fund raising is a key to the success of a tech startup, the webinar helped homegrown digital and tech companies in Vietnam have a better understanding on the fund raising and overseas listing process needed for their growth and expansion to the next level.

By Anh Duc

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