Gobi Partners Debuts HealthTech Investments in the Greater Bay Area and Malaysia, Bolstering HealthTech Portfolio to US$11.8 million in Greater Bay ASEAN

3 August 2023

Kuala Lumpur, 3 August 2023 – As a leading pan-Asian venture capital firm, Gobi Partners reached a new milestone by making simultaneous investments in the Greater Bay Area and Southeast Asia’s HealthTech landscape. By spearheading the Series A funding round for Hong Kong’s ImmunoCure and participating in the Series A funding round for Malaysia’s ORA in recent months, the firm bolstered its HealthTech portfolio with an aggregate investment of US$11.8 million, spread across 12 dynamic startups within China’s Greater Bay Area (GBA) and Southeast Asia – or ‘Greater Bay ASEAN’. These initiatives underscore Gobi Partners’ dedication to HealthTech innovation and its intent to expand in the pivotal regions of Greater Bay ASEAN.

As a proactive participant in the HealthTech sector, Gobi Partners utilizes its resources to stimulate growth and fuel innovation. Its eclectic portfolio comprises trailblazing HealthTech companies, each known for their distinctive offerings including Hong Kong’s first unicorn exit – Prenetics, Biomed, Panoptic AI, ScolioScan, Gense Technologies, Immuno Cure and ORA. All these companies illustrate Gobi Partners’ commitment to forging HealthTech’s future. 

Strategic Venture into Southeast Asia’s HealthTech Sector

Gobi Partners’ recent foray into Southeast Asia’s HealthTech sector highlights its commitment to expanding access to high-quality care in the region.  The strategic investment in ORA, a pioneering vertically integrated telehealth platform, reflects Gobi Partners’ recognition of the swift shift towards digital health. This trend gained momentum even before the Covid-19 pandemic. ORA’s direct-to-consumer model, tailored to Southeast Asia where nearly 40% of healthcare expenditure is out-of-pocket and their emphasis on managing chronic conditions rather than providing one-off treatments, holds potential for significant disruption in the region. With approximately 70% of ORA’s revenue derived from recurring subscription plans and retention rates surpassing that of Netflix, the company’s impact is tangible. Launched in 2021, ORA operates under three distinct brands: Modules, andSons, and OVA, each targeting dermatology, male health, and female reproductive health respectively, all underpinned by ORA’s robust infrastructure. A cornerstone of ORA’s strategy is nurturing early relationships with younger individuals dealing with non-life-threatening yet confidence-impacting conditions to cultivate enduring trust. This strategic alignment with innovative HealthTech startups like ORA underpins Gobi Partners’ long-term growth strategy in Southeast Asia.

Leveraging the Potential of China’s Greater Bay Area (GBA)

Gobi Partners has continually supported HealthTech enterprises through strategic investments in ventures that hold the potential to revolutionize healthcare across Asia. The investment strategy of Gobi Partners is driven by the regional advantages offered by the GBA. Rich in resources and talent, the GBA provides an ideal environment for HealthTech innovation. Success stories, like that of Hong Kong’s first unicorn exit Prenetics, which listed in the U.S. in May 2022 and formed a $200 million joint venture “Insighta” for breakthrough multi-cancer early detection screening with globally renowned scientist Prof. Dennis Lo in 2023 June, highlight Gobi’s successful track record. These achievements underscore not only the firm’s investment strategy but also the region’s capacity to cultivate unicorns. The emerging status of Hong Kong as an innovation powerhouse and the active role of universities as business incubators significantly shape the firm’s investment decisions. These factors, combined with supportive government policies, make these regions attractive investment destinations for Gobi Partners. Currently, the majority of Gobi Partners’ HealthTech investments are based within the GBA.

Commitment to Sustainability and Positive Societal Impact

Gobi Partners’ dedication to sustainable and responsible investing is a cornerstone of its investment decisions. Many HealthTech companies from its portfolio including Prenetics, Gense and Panoptic AI, feature in its recent sustainability report, reinforcing the firm’s commitment to investments that positively impact society. Gobi Partners strives to set a benchmark in responsible investing, aiming to shape a sustainable future via its portfolio companies.

“At Gobi Partners, our mission is to ensure high-quality healthcare for all through tech innovation and digital transformation Therefore, we are committed to expanding our HealthTech portfolio with sustainability and impact acting as guiding principles in our investment strategy,” said Thomas G. Tsao, Co-founder and Chairperson of Gobi Partners.