The Singapore- and US-based venture capital firm B Capital Group has closed its third and latest series of global growth funds at $2.1 billion, it announced on Thursday.
B Capital’s ‘Growth Fund III’ series comprises three vehicles, including B Capital Global Growth III LP, the main growth fund which had raised $1.1 billion until March last year.
According to B Capital’s co-founder and managing partner Raj Ganguly, most of the firm’s limited partners (LPs) re-upped in this fund, with the bulk of contributions coming from US institutions like endowments, foundations, the public, and corporate pension funds. Its LP base also includes investors from Singapore, Europe, the Middle East, and Latin America.
Over 10% of the capital is contributed by B Capital’s partners, added Ganguly.
B Capital’s successful fund close announcement comes amid growing global concerns among VCs around fundraising.
The allure of venture capital as an asset class has faded in recent times, particularly after a major tech correction in US public equities last year. The rising interest rate environment has also meant that competing asset classes like fixed income and bonds are now looking more attractive compared to high-risk venture capital.
“There was a lot of excitement about VCs as an asset class in 2020-21. Frankly, I was really worried about what we were seeing in the market valuations which were at a peak…I definitely don’t deny that capital is tougher to come by today and we’re very appreciative of the LPs who continue to back us. I think they understood that the valuation environment is much more favourable now than it was in 2021,” said Ganguly in an interview with DealStreetAsia.
Ganguly added that LPs have been engaging more with GPs in the past year, which he notes is a positive trend.
“I think LPs have gotten even more engaged over the last year, and that’s a good thing. The industry for some periods of time has had some resistance. Some GPs have had some resistance to sharing more data with LPs. And that’s something that we’ve always really prided ourselves on doing from the beginning. We think it’s a good trend that LPs are pushing for more transparency, more engagement and better governance with the GPs that they invest with,” said Ganguly.
B Capital’s growth fund typically invests between $10 million and $100 million in Series B-, C-, and D-stage companies, in sectors such as software, healthcare, fintech and, more recently, climate-tech. It also focuses on opportunities across the US, China, India, and Southeast Asia.
B Capital was founded by Raj Ganguly and Facebook co-founder Eduardo Saverin in 2015. It oversees $6.3 billion in assets under management across multiple funds from seed- to late-stage venture growth. There are 101 portfolio companies listed on its website, out of which eight are from Southeast Asia, 15 are from India and six are from China.
Some of its prominent bets in the region include Indonesian grab-and-go coffee chain Kopi Kenangan, Singapore car marketplace Carro, SE Asian logistics player Ninja Van, Indian edtech platform BYJU’s, and e-commerce platform Meesho.
The firm closed its second growth fund at $821.79 million in June 2020, raising money from 161 investors. Its first growth-stage fund was closed in early 2018 at $360 million.
Edited excerpts of an interview with Raj Ganguly, co-founder and managing partner of B Capital: