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Fintech investment firm BitRock is eyeing deals amid a post-FTX investment landscape, and is putting together a new US$100 million fund that is targeting software and digitalization plays in Asia.
Backed by logistics firm GLC, BitRock aims to close the new fund by the third quarter of the year and is currently speaking to family offices as well as longer-term limited partners, Alfred Shang, chief executive officer and co-founding partner, told Bloomberg.
According to BitRock, it focuses on "fintech innovations disrupting the traditional financial services market," and invests in rapidly growing segments such as supply chain finance, payment, wealth management, and fintech infrastructure such as AI, blockchain, big data, and cloud technology.
Founded in 2018, its portfolio companies include digital asset bank Sygnum and digital asset brokerage and custodian Archax.
For its new fund, it is seeking software-as-a-service and digitalization opportunities in China, fintech companies in Southeast Asia, as well as global startups in digital asset infrastructure and Web3.
“The economic slowdown globally, the high-interest environment, and the impact of Covid last year — all of this means that we as a sector specialist will be able to have better deals,” Shang said.
While crypto VCs with dry powder on the sidelines can benefit from lower valuations and reduced competition for deals, many are wary of the need for more stringent financial controls in projects looking to avoid another FTX-esque collapse.
Despite the unfortunate industry developments, 2022 was still a record year for crypto venture capital, with the industry witnessing the highest yearly venture funding at US$30.9 billion, according to data from The Block. However, VC funding declined significantly by the end of the year, with volumes decreasing to the 2020 levels.
Investors are understandably more cautious about investing in Web3, and investments from crypto VCs, which have always been an indication of the level of bullishness within the crypto markets, could well move into the slow lane in 2023, as Blockhead previously reported.
However, Asia is still viewed as an opportunity, with the region poised to become a dominant Web3 ecosystem, given growing interest and adoption witnessed in new and even existing markets such as Indonesia, Philippines, and India.
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