Home Finance Temasek Sets Up New Unit for AI & Blockchain Deals

Temasek Sets Up New Unit for AI & Blockchain Deals

Temasek Holdings Pte, a Singapore-based investment firm with an estimate of S$308 billion or an equivalent of $224 billion under its management, is currently creating new groups for exploring various opportunities in both blockchain and artificial intelligence technologies.

According to an internal memo that was recently seen by Bloomberg, the state investment company is on track to develop what it refers to as “experimental pods” in a bid to concentrate on the two areas.

Temasek is convinced that blockchain and artificial intelligence technologies make up some of the leading long-term trends with the potential to impact numerous geographies and industries.

The chief operating officer (COO) of the leading management unit of Temasek International Pte, Chia Song Hwee, is expected to supervise the activities of the new groups.

The memo showed that the strategy was recently unveiled along with other organizational transformations that were implemented back on October 1, 2018.

Temasek’s spokesman confirmed the contents of the memo.

In April, Temasek took part in a staggering $600 million Series C round of financing for SenseTime Group, which prides itself on being the most valuable artificial intelligence(AI) startup in the world.

The company also assisted in leading a Series A round of funding in June for Eigen Technologies, a London-based company that is involved in automating the mining of unstructured data.

In blockchain technology, Temasek invested its money in R3, a company that boasts the support of a group of banking institutions that aim at introducing distributed ledger technology into their activities.

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Greater Flexibility

“We have been expanding our business coverage and geographic footprint over the past few years,” the Temasek spokesman said in an emailed response to Bloomberg queries. “As our operating environment evolves, our focus is on remaining nimble and well-positioned to capture opportunities that deliver sustainable value over the long term.”

According to the content found in the memo, Temasek is also coming up with a new Strategic Initiative unit in an attempt to find better flexibility, particularly for opportunistic deals that not only call for senior-level assessment but also fast turnaround.

Tan Chong Lee, who heads Southeast Asia, Africa, the Middle East, and Europe, is anticipated to lead the unit, which has the potential to draw resources from other arms of Temasek.

“As the investment landscape becomes more competitive and complex, we are now seeing more situations where we would benefit from collaboration and specialized capabilities wider than our traditional sector and market team approach,” Temasek wrote in the memo.

Based on the memo’s content, Chia Song Hwee is expected to partner with Lee Theng Kiat, who is the chief executive officer and deputy chairperson of Temasek International, as well as Deputy Chief Executive Officer Dilhan Pillay, who will all make up Temasek’s collective leadership.

Temasek claimed that it had spotted various geographies including Southeast Asia, India, Africa, the Middle East, China, Europe, and the Americas as “investment markets” where it is currently allocating capital and executing deals.

The memo also shows that the company views New Zealand, Australia, Singapore, Japan, and Korea as “engagement markets” where it is anticipated to concentrate on institutional network building.

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KC Cheung
KC Cheung has over 18 years experience in the technology industry including media, payments, and software and has a keen interest in artificial intelligence, machine learning, deep learning, neural networks and its applications in business. Over the years he has worked with some of the leading technology companies, building and growing dynamic teams in a fast moving international environment.
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