TNB Aura's Perspectives on Zipmex and the financial revolution
Source: Zipmex YouTube
Charles Wong, a Co-Founder and Managing Partner of TNB Aura shares about Zipmex and the financial revolution. View full video here, with the full transcript as follows.
TNB Aura is a Southeast Asian Venture Capital firm, applying a proprietary thesis-led, high conviction approach to investing into potential Category Winners across the region. We focus our attention on founders and their companies at the Series A and B stages and seek to back our investee companies across multiple rounds as they scale.
The TNB in our name, stands for The Next Billion, users specifically, which is an aspirational nod to where we think the Southeast Asian ecosystem will grow to over the next 10 years.
Against this backdrop, we believe that rather than an emphasis on market disruption, which has been the calling card of VCs across the world, our view is that for selected industries, sectors and specific business models in Southeast Asia market creation is the name of the game.
As a thesis led investor, the vast majority of all our investments start their journey as a Sector Sprint, whereupon we focus on evaluating large total addressable market industries in lynchpin sectors where value is accreted.
In the case of Zipmex, we believe the Southeast Asian opportunity for a Digital Assets Bank or Platform is perhaps one of the largest, and most timely, that exists.
Specifically, we see significant tailwinds that if harnessed, should allow Zipmex to become a clear Category Winner in this space, including:
- Huge consumer market adoption and potential – for example, with 3 of Southeast Asia’s markets in the top 6 globally in terms of cryptocurrency ownership, and with rapid growth predominantly coming from small wallets vis-à-vis large ones.
- Meanwhile, mainstream institutional adoption continues to accelerate, bringing with it clearer use cases around payments, lending and custodial services.
- Finally, specifically to Southeast Asia, a high percentage of consumer financial assets remain held in low-yielding (inflation adjusted) bank deposits, with digital assets increasingly presenting a viable alternative to these.
With global precedents such as Coinbase as examples, we identified and evaluated over 50 players in the region, with Zipmex emerging as the clear leader in our opinion. Our investment thesis behind selecting Zipmex centred on our three key factors:
- First, a Tier 1 leadership team – helmed by serial entrepreneur Marcus Lim and an outstanding C-suite bench of experience executives.
- Secondly, clear emphasis on regulatory compliance with geographic diversification – with Zipmex being the only exchange operating and legally compliant in Singapore, Thailand, Indonesia, and Australia.
- Third, a bold product and platform strategy to continue to push the envelope in terms of new ways in which Digital Assets can change lives of both consumers, and institutions in the region.
In combination, we believe Zipmex is uniquely positioned to be a Category Winner in the Digital Assets sphere, and in doing so, change lives of The Next Billion.
What are TNB Aura's synergies with Zipmex, Plan B and Maco?
For each investment TNB Aura makes, we seek to construct and be part of the ‘perfect round’ which will give the investee company its very best chance at dominating its market.
In the case of Zipmex, we are privileged to be co-leading this round with well known global investor B Capital, as well as two of the most prominent listed media firms from Thailand, where Zipmex is a clear market leader:
Plan B is one of the largest and most innovative media companies in Thailand, which specializes in out-of-home media and engagement marketing. MACO is one of the media leaders for billboards and street furniture with an extensive media footprint across SEA.
Plan B and MACO together have one of the most comprehensive coverage of over 2,000 venues in Thailand alone. The investments from both media firms represent confidence and trust in digital assets and the growth and impact that digital assets will have on society. This investment from our consortium will allow Zipmex to further establish itself as a trusted and house-hold brand in Thailand, as well as utilize this market leadership position to continue to scale rapidly across the region.