Openspace evolves brand to focus on Active Intelligence

Freddie Luchterhand-Dare
November 2, 2021

Our refreshed brand reflects Openspace’s ambition to find and back companies creating a transformative impact where tech meets life. It also captures the firm’s strategic expansion and continued growth as it surpasses $550M in committed capital across 4 active funds and 39 portfolio companies.


“This is undoubtedly an exciting time for the venture ecosystem in Southeast Asia and as one of the first-movers in 2014, we’ve been able to continuously tailor the firm to meet the changing needs of the region’s founders and our global institutional investors. This refreshed brand is a natural step for us as we evolve the firm from a single-fund to multi-fund, multi-stage strategy, with a hands-on operational approach and strong track record”, emphasised Shane Chesson, Co-Founder and Partner.
“To us, Active Intelligence reflects three key elements we have embraced to stay ahead.First, we have a singular focus on Southeast Asia. Second, we have a depth in our team, which creates a critical diversity of thought. Thirdly, we have a wide scale and always-available operations team – with experienced in-house talent and tech-enabled capabilities”, added Hian Goh, Co-Founder and Partner.


Openspace now operates out of 5 active offices –in Vietnam, the Philippines, Thailand, Indonesia and Singapore ­– with 30 full-time team members, covering 12 different nationalities and with 50% female representation overall. In 2021 alone, 10 new people have joined Openspace. A significant number of these new hires occupy senior roles within the operations team, where the expertise has broadened to include ESG & Impact, DataScience, Technology and Brand.


Openspace has leveraged this extensive operational value-add to work with Gojek (now GoTo) as they grew from a two-wheeler ride-hailing service to an everyday super-app; Love, Bonito from a Singapore fashion label to the leading digitally native D2C womenswear brand; Kumu from a messaging app to the biggest live streaming and live commerce platform in the Philippines; and Pluang from an app to buy gold online to Indonesia’s most asset diverse investment platform.


“Openspace has been side-by-side with us, providing a rare level of actionable insight and practical operational support that has helped us get to where we are. Their team are always with us, sleeves rolled up, even in the earliest hours of the morning. We see them as friends and partners on our cap table, not just shareholders”, said Claudia Kolonas, co-founder of Pluang.


As part of its strategic growth, Openspace announced its mid-stage fund, OSV+, which further positions the firm to capitalize on the region’s increasing maturity. According to Executive Director, Jessica Huang Pouleur, who leads the fund, “it will focus on mid-stage growth opportunities, largely Series C and D rounds. It enables us to double down on companies we previously backed atSeries A and B rounds, as well as opens up opportunities to invest in an increasingly large set of other companies operating at a similar stage.”


Since 2020, Openspace has also taken a lead in responsible investing in Southeast Asia. This has been spearheaded by a dedicated Head of ESG & Impact, who continues to advise portfolio companies on best practices as well as delivered the firm’s first annual Sustainability Report in2021.