Southeast Asia’s shared workspace market has certainly been warming up over the past year or so, with a clamor of new providers, big-money investments, and M&A activity.
Well, things just got a whole lot hotter.
Singaporean co-working provider JustCo today announced a partnership with GIC, the city-state’s sovereign wealth fund, and local developer Frasers Property. The three companies are pooling US$177 million to invest in shared workspaces throughout the region.
It wasn’t immediately clear how much each partner is contributing to the investment.
While the three firms are framing the deal as a collaboration, a statement they published today suggests that at least part of the transaction involves a strategic investment in JustCo by the other two.
“Our investment in JustCo will support it in its next phase of growth outside of Singapore,” said Lee Kok Sun, chief investment officer at GIC Real Estate.
JustCo founder and CEO Kong Wan Sing said, “The confidence that GIC and Frasers Property have instilled in JustCo is a testament to our [technology and expertise], and we are extremely humbled to have found the right investors who share the same vision and purpose. This round of investment will help us enhance and redefine the flexible workspace experience through multi-geographical footprints.”
According to the statement, the capital will be used to “develop a co-working space platform across Asia.”
Already operating co-working venues in Singapore, Indonesia, and Thailand, JustCo said that the new funding will allow it to expand its presence throughout the region. It will also target entry into markets farther afield, in Greater China, India, Japan, South Korea, and Australia.
It will also use the capital to enhance its tech solutions and the opportunities for collaboration and networking it provides for its user base, it said.
JustCo’s last funding was its series B round last October. While it didn’t disclose how much it raised, the startup claimed a post-money valuation of US$200 million.
It said at the time it was aiming to have 30 shared workspaces totaling 1 million square feet in operation across Asia Pacific by the end of this year, with first-time venues slated to open in Bangkok, Ho Chi Minh City, Jakarta, Kuala Lumpur, and Manila.
Chinese shared workspace unicorn Ucommune has been making its presence felt in the region, selecting Singapore for its first foreign location last July, and strategically investing in Indonesia’s Rework a few months later.
US co-working giant WeWork also entered the region in the region of late, acquiring Singapore-based rival SpaceMob last year and adding China’s Naked Hub last month.
JustCo had reportedly been in merger negotiations with Naked Hub last year, though it later pulled out of any potential deal due to what it termed as “unaligned” expectations.
This is a developing story. Check back for updates.
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