Southeast Asian mobile Internet company Garena announces $170M Series D

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Garena, a Singapore-based company that makes mobile gaming, e-commerce, and payment apps, said today that it has raised a $170 million Series D.

The funding was led by Khazanah Nasional Berhad, the Malaysian government’s strategic investment fund. Other startups Khazanah has recently made big bets on include travel search engine Skyscanner and Chinese online lending platform WeLab. Garena’s investors already included General Atlantic LLC, the Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan, and Keytone Ventures.

Its Series D brings Garena’s total raised so far to $500 million. The WSJ reports that the company’s current valuation is $3.75 billion. A Garena representative did not confirm the amount because company does not disclose financial figures, but said “the Wall Street Journal researched their piece very carefully.”

Garena was founded in 2009 as an online community for PC gamers, but has since shifted its focus to mobile consumer apps. It still publishes games, but its other products include chat apps like TalkTalk, social network BeeTalk, digital payment app AirPay, and mobile marketplace Shopee.

The company claims to be “greater Southeast Asia’s largest Internet and mobile platform company,” with $300 million in gross revenue in 2015 and a compound annual growth rate of more than 90 percent over the past five years.

Garena’s prospects are tied into Southeast Asia’s rapidly increasing mobile penetration rates, particularly in markets like Indonesia and Malaysia. Of course, it is also up against other tech companies targeting the same regions. For example, AirPay, which Garena says has an annualized gross transaction value run-rate of $330 million, competes with MOLPay and Coda Payments to serve customers who need an alternative to credit cards for online transactions.