Monday, 20 July 2015
||Registration and refreshments
|| Welcome remarks
||Opening keynote address
The geopolitical importance of Southeast Asia
Southeast Asia private equity in 2015 and beyond
Private equity in the region is in an interesting period. Despite macroeconomic and political instabilities in Southeast Asia, the growth story is still compelling and deal activity is steady. With increasing economic liberalisation and a growing consumer class, it's easy to see why investors continue to allocate funds in the region. Admittedly, in the diverse and local markets of Southeast Asia, fund managers have to navigate some unique challenges and require a specific appreciation for the environment outside of the standard strategic approach to achieve desired returns. Leading industry professionals will discuss the challenges and opportunities, focusing on the following questions:
- What is the role of Singapore as an investment hub for the region?
- Which markets and sectors provide the best opportunity for success?
- How does the macroeconomic and political situation affect strategic planning?
- Has the private equity model changed in terms of diversification and selecting a niche area of expertise, and what are the current trends?
- Are LPs becoming more selective in the region because of better returns elsewhere?
||Networking coffee break
||Smart Nation keynote
Building blocks for success: Infrastructure and energy
One of the stumbling blocks holding back the Southeast Asian market from achieving its potential as an investment destination is the quality of infrastructure. This problem is understandable given the population growth across the region and the burden on governments to keep up with demand-but more importantly it provides an excellent opportunity for the private equity community to not just take part but perhaps also lead the way in addressing infrastructure needs across the region.
- Where are the current opportunities throughout the region and how can fund managers gain access?
- What government initiatives are in place to encourage private investment?
- Can the energy sector bounce back, and what is the role of renewable energy in addressing infrastructure needs?
- How interested are LPs in infrastructure and energy investments?
Risks and rewards in Indian PE investing
Indian private equity has struggled to realise its huge potential and deliver consistent returns to satisfy LP expectations. However, with Modi at the helm and the promise of better governance and a stable investment landscape, the economy and market sentiment have improved dramatically. With this newfound optimism, can the Indian PE industry develop the foundations for a sustained period of success, and does this signal that boom times are on the horizon again?
- Is the new government reigniting the spark for investing in the Indian PE industry?
- Where does India stand compared with other emerging markets?
- What are LPs' current views on India, and are they ready to return and invest
- Which sectors provide the best opportunities?
Opportunities for private debt in Southeast Asia
A substantial volume of debt will need to be refinanced in Southeast Asia in the coming year in a variety of industries. This situation has led to a number of opportunities for private equity and debt specialists to step in to fix financials and improve performance. Experts in reversing the fortunes of failing companies, funds are increasingly focused on the distressed market as a financing solution to help companies grow.
- What are the current trends in the region for private debt, and is this a viable route for PE entry?
- What macro factors are contributing to the rise of debt-oriented strategies and direct lending specifically?
- Are distressed debt and credit opportunities still niche businesses, or have they now become a significant part of the PE business?
- How do investors view the use of senior and mezzanine debt to finance buyouts?
- What is the role of debt in restructuring and special situations?
Investment destination spotlight: Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam
In recent years it is fair to say these countries have taken a back seat to their neighbours in allocations. However, headline deals and an improved macroeconomic environment are creating a spike in both LP interest and GP activity. In an engaging briefing, a panel of experts will cast some light on these markets and provide a candid view on their pitfalls, opportunities and outlook for private equity investors.
- Does the macro story of the Philippines really mean it is likely to attract the same interest as Indonesia?
- What impact will the upcoming elections in 2016 have on PE?
- Despite political unrest, has Thailand still managed to deliver and is it likely to gain momentum?
- Which sectors are likely to provide the greatest opportunities for foreign investors?
||Networking coffee break
Navigating turbulent waters: Managing your macro and currency risks
One of the key challenges for investors in Southeast Asia is how they manage their macro and currency risk. Any major upheaval in currency fluctuations, like in Indonesia in 2013, will have a major impact on returns In a volatile world with quantitative easing and an uncertain global macroeconomic environment, it's a challenge for funds to hedge and manage investments across numerous currencies across the life cycle of their portfolio.
- What are the key currency trends in ASEAN?
- What is the impact of political and economic reforms on ASEAN currencies?
- How can you manage long-term exposure when dealing with FX risks?
- What strategies do funds employ to mitigate their currency risk?
Spotlight on Malaysia
Although the private equity market is relatively small, Malaysia has one of the most stable and dynamic economies in Southeast Asia, providing ample opportunity for local and international investors. As larger deals are highly contested by domestics and regionals, smaller and more nimble GPs are able to capitalise on a wider range of opportunities, from technology plays to mid-size control deals that can also provide LPs with superior returns.
- How has the market matured, and where can you find the best opportunities?
- What is the best way to take advantage of Malaysia's unrealised potential?
- How crucial is it to have a local presence and the ability to build relationships?
- Is Malaysia an ideal platform for regional expansion?
||Close of conference day 1
Tuesday, 21 July 2015
||Registration and refreshments
E-commerce special: Accelerating tech innovation across the region
Southeast Asia's size, youthful demographics, rapid economic growth, urbanisation and emerging middle class are a big draw for e-commerce players. With the success of e-commerce companies in China and India, is Southeast Asia where the next big e-commerce giant will be born? In this session the speakers will debate the topics below, followed by an audience vote to see whether they believe Southeast Asia has the capacity to realise its own online tech giant.
- How is the VC landscape shaping up? Can we expect a sustainable industry
for years to come?
- How are the various governments accelerating the development of a start-up
culture? Is Singapore leading the way?
- What tech opportunities exist for local and international players?
- Are the comparisons with e-commerce in China in the noughties justified?
- Is there are a danger of raising expectations too high and creating a bubble
In this interactive and entertaining session, carefully selected entrepreneurs will have an opportunity to pitch their business to a group of successful venture capitalists. Their aim is to convince the panel that their venture has the potential to succeed where many fail and is deserving of their expertise and investment. The panel will evaluate and question each entrepreneur to see whether their business stands up to scrutiny before choosing who is worthy of their commitment. Let the pitches begin!
||Networking coffee break
Adding value in portfolio companies: What PE & VC can learn from each other
In a highly practical session, a panel of executives from portfolio companies and leading GPs and VCs will share their experiences, observations and tips on how they effectively built their companies, how they realised their growth potential, what they learned from each other and how they managed their relationship. In a challenging and culturally diverse market such as Southeast Asia, collaborating with your company executives is not just good business, it's a necessity.
- At what stage in the growth of the organisation did the private equity or venture partner come on board?
- How did they manage to scale the business given geography, infrastructure and other factors?
- What hurdles did they face working with an external partner, and how did they develop a strategy to ensure a fruitful and trusting relationship?
- How important is the control issue, and how are decisions taken at an executive level that shape the direction of the business?
- Given the level of interest in e-commerce and technology, are GPs setting up a venture arm of the business to take advantage of these opportunities
Where does Indonesia fit on the investment dartboard?
Indonesia can be a challenge for investors. The macro story is compelling and there are a handful of very experienced fund managers operating in the country, but how much focus does Indonesia command and does it require a dedicated commitment to a country fund to participate in the best deals outside of a Southeast Asia or Asia-wide fund?
- Have expectations risen now that the new government has been in office for six months?
- Do LPs still view Indonesia as a hot pick in the region, and has it delivered a return so far?
- Which sectors have opened up for investment, and what exciting deals have we witnessed over the last 12 months?
- Is infrastructure the best bet for achieving stable returns?
The LP's view: The Southeast Asia private equity proposition
Southeast Asia seems to be a conundrum for LP's. The growing consumer class and political and economic liberalisation are appealing for investors, but market volatility and cultural nuisances create a fear factor for foreign LPs. In this session a panel of LPs with experience in the region will discuss the strategies they have employed to develop a programme in the region and the lessons learnt on this journey.
- How do LPs view Southeast Asia compared with the rest of the world?
- How mature is the Singapore market?
- Do LPs look for a country or regionally focused fund, and are intermediaries seen as the best method for gaining access and managing a programme?
- Are there co-investment opportunities in Southeast Asia, and are LPs exercising their right to participate in deals?
- Which countries are LPs viewing as most favourable, and do they see this changing over the next five years?
- What is the LP's view on the emergence of venture capital opportunities, especially around e-commerce?
Entrepreneurial lunch: Finding the next disruptive innovation
Early-stage investors understand that the next tech billionaire will be sourced from the next generation of young entrepreneurs, many in their early 20s. Although they might not have the sophistication and experience many investors desire, they do have characteristics to succeed: a fearless attitude and a natural understanding of the digitalised, socially connected and consumption-driven modern lifestyle, which will be the foundation for the next disruptive technologies. In this dialogue, early-stage investors, angels and young entrepreneurs will share insights on entrepreneurship, the future of innovation in Southeast Asia and more.
Close of conference