Business Startup

Best time to build startups in Malaysia, says Antler CEO

The most-active seed stage global venture capital (VC) firm, Antler, said that “this is the best time to build a startup in Malaysia”. He said that after launching the first cohort of 65 startup founders in Malaysia. The VC specializes in “Day Zero investing,” which supports founders every step of the way.

Magnus Grimeland, CEO of Antler, who spoke exclusively to StarBiz, observed that Malaysia has recently placed a greater focus on innovation, which has been boosted by the government’s proactive policy approach.

The VC has partnered with Khazanah Nasional Berhad, Malaysia’s sovereign wealth fund, to invest in Malaysian local startups and support entrepreneurs, VC and corporate venture programs through collaboration with both domestic and foreign partners.

He said about Malaysia’s focus on innovation during the Khazanah Megatrends Forum, “This would drive the next wave of growth and it has a tremendous knock-on effect on the overall economy,” further mentioning that Khazanah Nasional Bhd has been crucial in creating an environment that is more welcoming to high-potential businesses.

Grimeland, who is also a co-founder of Zalora, also praised Malaysia’s ongoing efforts to create a “full-stack” capital ecosystem. This enables a business to grow locally by accessing money without having to relocate to another country.

Antler also aims to bring a “unique” value proposition to Malaysia’s VC sector, according to Frank Kang, who was recently appointed as the country head and associate partner of Antler for Malaysia.

With its new office in Kuala Lumpur, Antler aims to invest in over 30 startups across Malaysia over the next three years, with the inaugural Venture Generation, a 10-week in-person first venture generation program, set to begin this month, October 2023.—The Star

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