Tech Startups in Asia Including 37 Unicorns in China


CB Insights:

Asia is the earth’s largest and most populous continent. Nearly one-third of the world’s private “unicorn” companies that are valued at $1B+, are headquartered there, 52 unicorn companies total. China holds the most, with over two-thirds (71%) of the continent’s billion-dollar startups.

Now, the tech boom is diffusing across Asia and Oceania; startups outside of the established hotbeds for technology and innovation are raising vast sums of money.

Using CB Insights data, we analyzed the most well-funded tech startups in the Asia-Pacific region by country based on disclosed equity funding. We excluded debt funding and only considered VC-backed companies that have raised at least $1M of equity funding to date. Every country included on the map has at least one startup with $1M+ in equity funding, and every company featured has raised equity funding since 2012.

Eight of the 15 Asia-Pacific countries featured in our map have at least one startup that has raised $100M+, and 6 Asian countries on the map have seen at least one unicorn birth.

After China’s 37 unicorns, India has the second most with eight. Other countries with startups valued at $1B+ include: South Korea (Coupang, CJ Games, Yello Mobile), Singapore (Grab, Garena Online), Japan (Mercari), and Indonesia (Go-JEK).

Countries whose top five most well-funded VC-backed tech startups that did not have a combined total of $3M+ in equity funding were excluded. With these criteria for selection, some countries did not make the map—including Mongolia, Timor-Leste, and others. The least well-funded startup on the map is in Bangladesh: the on-demand grocery delivery platform Chaldal, with $120K in equity funding in a seed round from Y Combinator. The most well-funded tech startup in Asia is China’s Didi Chuxing, which has raised $8.6B and is valued at $33.8B.