Indonesia’s largest co-working operator, EV Hive, has bagged $20 million in fresh funding from a roster of investors including an affiliate of Japan’s SoftBank Group, as Southeast Asia’s flexible space race continues to heat up.
The funds from the series A investment round will go toward fuelling the brand’s expansion in Indonesia and Southeast Asia, the Jakarta-based company announced this week. EV Hive said it aims to open 100 locations throughout Southeast Asia by 2022, including centres in Vietnam, the Philippines and Thailand.
Founded in 2015, EV Hive manages 21 workspace locations across Indonesia, spanning over 30,000 square metres. The startup said that it would draw on its enlarged network of backers to accelerate its regional rollout of “smart” co-working spaces.
The company added that it plans to launch two new co-working centres in downtown Jakarta while introducing new sharing-economy platforms involving residential, retail and storage. “We are extremely grateful to our existing shareholders for their support and will continue to be obsessively focused on providing new services for our community,” CEO and co-founder Carlson Lau commented in the statement.
Investors Drawn to Jakarta Startup
The investment in EV Hive was led by Softbank Ventures Korea – a Seoul-based venture capital affiliate of Softbank, as well as private equity fund manager H&CK Partners and Korean VC firm Tigris Investment. The round also drew backing from new investors Naver, LINE Ventures and STIC Investments, along with existing backers East Ventures, SMDV, Sinar Mas Land, Insignia Venture Partners, Intudo Ventures, and a pair of private investors, Michael Widjaya and Chris Angkasa.
The new funding round continues a flurry of deals in Asia’s co-working sector in recent months, as flexible office operators target rapid expansion while investors bet on the potential for shared offices to increasingly disrupt the way people work. In just the past month, Chinese flexible office giant Ucommune merged with rival Workingdom; sovereign wealth fund GIC teamed up with Frasers Property to invest $177 million in Singapore-based JustCo, which is aiming for Southeast Asian domination; and Singapore’s leading developer CapitaLand opened its first co-working space in China – among other headlines around the region.
In deciding to back EV Hive over other co-working opportunities, Softbank Ventures Korea was drawn to what the statement describes as the startup’s “powerful combination of vision and execution focus.” Softbank Ventures Korea partner and manager director Sean Lee commented: “Co-working will become the mainstream platform through which the modern workforce is organized, and I am confident that EV Hive will be the leading regional player in this exciting new industry.”
EV Hive Raises Funds for 8,500-User Network
EV Hive said it would open two new centres in Jakarta office buildings Menara Mandiri and Menara Prima. In addition to collaborative workspaces, the company offers a variety of supporting services and a community network designed to support its members in starting and ramping up their businesses.
EV Hive currently has about 3,500 members who rent space for at least a month and roughly 5,000 daily-pass users each month. Originally managed by VC firm East Ventures, EV Hive was spun off as an independent firm last year. The company raised $800,000 in “pre-series A” funding in May 2017, following by a $3.5 million cash infusion in September.