At the Asia Tech x Singapore 2022 event held yesterday (June 1), one particular keynote discussed the regional investment trends and what that means for startups in this landscape.
Michael Lints, a partner at Golden Gate Ventures, observed that investors are being more cautious, and that the narratives and mindsets for venture capital firms have changed from one of “growth at all costs” to one of finding the “path to profitability”.
Michelle Ng, head of Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) at Quest Ventures, concurred with Michael, suggesting that during this stage, startups cannot expect valuations to be as generous as they were before.
She also advised founders to be prudent with spending, and to cut down on operational costs as much as possible.
Several panelists urged startups to better consider the ESG aspects of their businesses, and hinted that it might provide greater incentives for investors to fund these startups.
On this point, an audience member queried about the trade-offs between profits and ESG goals, and how much venture capital firms like Quest Ventures might consider the importance of ESG.
The reply was that profitability and sustainability are not actually mutually exclusive, and that any business that wants to be successful also needs to be sustainable.