Equity management platform Qapita bags funding from East Ventures

SINGAPORE-BASED Qapita, a fintech startup that provides software to manage a company's equity, has secured an undisclosed strategic investment from early-stage venture investor, East Ventures.

The fresh funds will be used to strengthen the team in Singapore, India and Indonesia, and to accelerate product development and build its client base, it said in a statement on Wednesday.

The new injection follows a US$1.8 million seed round led by Vulcan Capital last September; in that round, Vulcan was joined by investors such as Koh Boon Hwee, the Kuok family office K3 Ventures, as well as partners of the NorthStar Group. Since then, Qapita has expanded its team to include former bankers, venture capitalists and equity management professionals, it said.

Founded in 2019, Qapita was founded in hopes of reducing the inefficiencies in private-market ownership and transactions. It helps private companies and startups manage capitalisation tables and employee stock ownership plans (ESOPs). It also aims to digitise issuance of equity awards and shares.

Ravi Ravulaparthi, the startup's chief executive and co-founder, said: "The rapidly growing ecosystem in Indonesia will require digital management of equity, ESOP culture, employee liquidity programmes and a thriving secondary private market. Qapita can contribute to this need with its software platform."

Qapita's chief operating officer, Lakshman Gupta, added that the startup is also building up digital share issuance capabilities on its platform and will work with partners in the company secretarial and legal sector.

He said: "We believe that there will be no paper-based shares and share certificates for startups in this region in the years to come. Digitisation is relentless, and we think security issuance and securities themselves will become electronic."

Willson Cuaca, co-founder and managing partner of East Ventures, said: "Qapita solves the classic cap tables management problem that are constantly faced by startup founders in the region. We believe the digital equity management Software as a Service (SaaS) solution provided by the company will soon be widely adopted."