Core Capital onboards RISE Group to the Gobi-Core Philippines Fund

Core Capital Managing Partner, Jason Gaisano

Manila-based venture capital (VC) company, Core Capital has officially onboarded Internet acceleration solutions provider, RISE Group to its Gobi-Core Philippines Fund (Gobi-Core).

Founded in 2018, Gobi-Core is co-managed with Pan-Asian VC firm, Gobi Partners with US$1.5 billion in assets under management. The investment into RISE Group aligns with Gobi-Core’s overall mandate to help nurture and empower the technological ecosystem growth in the country.

RISE Group’s mission is to accelerate the Internet for the Philippines by working hand-in-hand with local industry players to deliver an improved Internet experience for businesses, telecommunications service providers, and property developers. To this end, the group’s key businesses are divided into three main areas:

RISE, is an internet service provider which enables businesses through high-quality dedicated and shared internet services with simple plans, responsive engineer-run customer support, fast install times, low latency routing, and transparent pricing.

GetaFIX, the first and largest commercial carrier-neutral internet exchange in the Philippines, which together with local Internet Service Providers and data centre partners such as the ePLDT Vitro Data centre facilities helps to make the Philippines a more attractive location for international content partners to host equipment inside the Philippines which in turn speeds up the entire country’s internet.

OpenAccess helps property developers gain access to more telecommunication options for their locators and residents while also, in parallel, accelerating the shift from copper to fibre coverage by helping local Internet Service Providers.

RISE Group currently operates in Cebu, Manila and Davao where it provides businesses with high-quality internet and a world-class customer service experience. While the Group notes marked increases in internet speeds within the country since 2015, it remains committed to being one of the key authors of the Philippine internet acceleration story.

Core Capital Managing Partner, Jason Gaisano said: “If the overall digital economy in the Philippines is to hit US$35 billion in GMV by 2025, we need to continue improving the quality of our internet infrastructure. Through this partnership, we see a huge opportunity that remains underserved in this business segment.”

GetaFIX Head Gio Bacareza said: “To improve internet access in the Philippines, we need to address issues of access, quality, and affordability. While significant progress has been made, with 53% of Filipinos using the internet, median download speeds improving to around 68Mbps, and prices dropping, there is still a long way to go. How can we make internet access available to the other half of the population? In Southeast Asia, the median download speed is over 100Mbps. Paying for the internet currently takes up 12% of someone’s wallet, as measured by GNI per capita, compared to 5% for the rest of Southeast Asia. Clearly, there is much work left to be done. It will take the whole community working together, from large telcos and small ISPs to cable companies, infrastructure players, IXPs, the private sector, and the government, to close the gap over the coming years.”

The investment into RISE Group marks the eighth overall investment for Gobi-Core which already counts household names such as Tier One, kumu and CloudEats in its stable of portfolio companies.

Based on Google, Temasek, Bain & Co.’s E-conomy SEA 2022 report, the Philippines’ digital economy is expected to reach a GMV of US$35 billion by 2025, growing at a 20% Compounded Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) from US$20 billion last year. The main driver will be the e-commerce sector, which is seen to hit US$22 billion by 2025 at a 17% CAGR.

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