Founded in 2010 by Yusuke Tanaka and three other founders, Locondo is one of the largest ecommerce sites selling shoes in Japan. Yusuke, an ex-McKinsey consultant who worked in Silicon Valley from 2007 to 2010, was very inspired by Tony Hsieh’s Zappos. “I had an opportunity to hear about the story of Zappos. I thought there was great potential to do it in Japan,” says Yusuke. By chance, Yusuke met the guys from Rocket Internet, the German ecommerce startup machine. In 2010, Locondo received a US$10 million investment from Rocket followed by another $5 million in 2011. Rocket Internet also provided expertise in logistics and warehousing to Yusuke’s team.
Microsoft Founder Bill Gates doesn’t worry that Silicon Valley is the home of billion-dollar texting apps and farming games. “Innovation in California is at its absolute peak right now. Sure, half of the companies are silly, and you know two-thirds of them are going to go bankrupt, but the dozen or so ideas that emerge out of that are going to be really important,” Gates told Rolling Stone, in a wide-ranging interview on government surveillance, financial inequality, immigration reform, and the cultural backlash against Silicon Valley.
Jason Lamuda is one of those people who rarely goes to networking events in Indonesia, but everybody knows him for the successful ventures he co-founded: daily deals site Disdus, which was acquired by Groupon in 2011, and the female fashion ecommerce site BerryBenka 1 which successfully raised its series B funding round late last year. Lamuda was one of many Indonesians who fled his home due to the riots in 1998. He continued his studies in Singapore and then followed in the footsteps of his brothers to study abroad in the US. Lamuda took courses in chemical engineering at Purdue University because according to his research, chemical engineering graduates tend to have good salaries. He hadn’t thought about running his own business at the time. During his time in the US he grew amazed at how technology was helping shape people’s lives. He used internet services like Amazon regularly. Lamuda was also impressed with the people who created these life-changing companies. “The founders were people of various backgrounds; whether they were rich or poor, or did not understand tech that much, but they could make it and change the world for the better,” says Lamuda. It is from this experience that Lamuda developed an eagerness to start something in the tech industry on his own.
Last April, Dong Nguyen, a quiet 28-year-old who lived with his parents in Hanoi, Vietnam, and had a day job programming location devices for taxis, spent a holiday weekend making a mobile game. He wanted it to be simple but challenging, in the spirit of the Nintendo games he grew up playing. The object was to fly a bug-eyed, big-lipped, bloated bird between a series of green vertical pipes. The quicker a player tapped the screen, the higher the bird would flap. He called it Flappy Bird.
The game went live on the iOS App Store on May 24th. Instead of charging for Flappy Bird, Nguyen made it available for free, and hoped to get a few hundred dollars a month from in-game ads.
As mass expansion continues and globalisiation has significant impacted on natural resources and the environment, what are options for future generations and what roles can cities play in the ecosystems of the future. When Dr. Dickson Despommier set out to solve America’s food, water and energy crisis, he didn’t just think big-he thought up. And according to his philosophy we could soon be seeing skyscrapers transformed into crop production centre’s, the idea of indoor food growing is taking off.
Nakamoto is a Japanese-American descended from Samurai who born in July 1949 in the city of Beppu, Japan, where he was brought up poor and as a Buddhist by his mother.
She migrated to California in 1959 bringing Satoshi with him and he graduated from California State Polytechnic University at the age 0f 23. For the past 40-years he has not used his birth name and in 1973 changed his name to Dorian Prentice Satoshi Nakamoto. He signs his name Dorian S. Nakamoto. The name Nakamoto appeared in the 2008 whitepaper introducing bitcoin, but the moniker was widely believed to be an alias for a person or group.
Y Combinator's a US business launched the first Female Founders Conference which brought approximately 500 women together last Saturday afternoon to hear discussions of startup struggles and stories of success. G8FMFJG2AJ2V
YC co-founder Jessica Livingston said they were please with the turn out and plan to repeat the conference again next year, Saturday's event took place in California’s Hahn Auditorium at the Computer History Museum. Keynote speakers included several female startup founders who shared their views including business inspiration, successes and also failures, but the key message was trial, error and persistence are the common keys to a successful business
Adora Cheung’s journey stood out. She is founder of Homejoy, an online platform for home services. For years, Cheung and her younger brother Aaron tried several startups unsuccessfully before finally getting it right with their current business. Their latest endeavor has been a big success and is now established in 30 markets nationwide across the U.S. The business boasts 100 employees, with offices in San Francisco and New York City. Cheung successfully raised around $40 million in venture capital, and has now exceeded a monthly revenue in millions. But she described their first 1,000 days as "the dark ages," eventually stumbling upon the realization that its not worth working on draining projects and best to focus on those that can be developed rapidly and effectively. Interestingly the idea for the business came when the siblings worked out of bachelor Aaron's apartment, which Adora said, was a mess with a bathroom so disgusting that she refused to use it. That led to a frustrating experience of looking for a house cleaner, then the realisation, "There's actually a problem here we can work on," she said and Homejoy was created.
Aaron and Adora Cheung of Homejoy
Adora Cheung, Founder, Homejoy
Michelle Crosby, Founder, Wevorce
Diane Greene, Founder, VMware
Julia Hartz, Founder, Eventbrite
Elizabeth Iorns, Founder, Science Exchange
Ann Johnson, Founder, Interana
Jessica Livingston, Founder, Y Combinator
Jessica Mah, Founder, inDinero
Kathryn Minshew, Founder, The Muse
Danielle Morrill, Founder, Mattermark
Elli Sharef, Founder, HireArt
Jamie Wong, Founder, Vayable
fundedflow looks forward to seeing the lineup for next year, for more information please visit the website
Running for three years now “The 2014 FORBES ASIA Power Businesswomen list”, presents a selection of 50 women from a range of industries that includes venture capital, lingerie, toolmaking and constructions. New additions that make it onto the list are Alison Watkins, who rises to the top of Coca-Cola Amatil,l who became only the second woman to head up a top 30 listed Australian company; Ong Chih Ching, an entrepreneur and property magnet based in Singapore with a taste for yachts and fast cars. Also onto the list is veteran Hong Kong movie producer, Nansun Shi, whose career spans almost four decades.
The Researchers at Forbes say they use the following criteria to qualify who makes it onto the list: company revenue (rarely less than $100 million, frequently in the billions), the woman’s position at the company (if she’s the boss that’s a big plus) and how involved she is (preferably running operations day-to-day).
Chew Gek Khim of Singapore fits all this criteria and then and beyond as she transforms Straits Trading, a staid colonial-era tin smelter, into a sleek 21st-century holding company. The Forbes team also selected entrepreneurs, like Noriko Nakamura of Poppins from Japan and Australian retail queen Naomi Milgrom, who have nurtured their own businesses.
It’s a tough process finding and judging women across a large geographic space and this year’s selection includes 13 countries. The range of industries is also very diverse as are the cultures and economies that must be taken into account. A company in Vietnam with $100 million in annual sales for example might be a standout on the local stock exchange but would register barely a blip in a more developed market. Countries such as Indonesia tend to throw up family-run conglomerates rather than listed companies, where information is easier to come by. And then there is culture: In Greater China women seem to advance more smoothly than in many other countries in the region, where tradition can remain a barrier.
A survey by Grant Thornton International Business Report notes a sharp rise in senior management positions held by women in mainland China to 51% (as of February 2013) from 25% a year earlier. Compare that with 7% in Japan, rock bottom of the heap of 44 economies studied; 22% in Australia; and 34% in Asean overall. The global average is 24%.
From a daring bright spark creating an online social media venture in Myanmar to a longtime executive just named the first woman to run an Indian oil major, these women are a small selection of those driving change.
Research: Shu-Ching Jean Chen, Susan Cunningham, FORBES INDONESIA, Don Frazier, Ron Gluckman, Jane Ho, Joyce Huang, Seline Jung, Naazneen Karmali, Sunshine Lichauco de Leon, Noelle Lim, Lan Anh Nguyen, Anuradha Raghunathan, Lucinda Schmidt, Jennifer Schultz Wells, James Simms, Blessing Waung.
Source Forbes Asia
In this weeks feature Fundedflow takes a look at Reaction Inc, a US company based in Austin, Texas. The company who launched in July 2013, develops and produces emergency housing shelters in the form of mobile accommodation units. There initial products is called the Exo Housing System, and is a portable shelter made out of a lightweight composite. The shelters can be moved by had but are robust enough to stop bullets. The units also incorporate a unique shelving and bed stacking system which allows for a dynamic use of the unit dependant on situations. The Exo also flat packs and can be stacked like a set of plastic cups for storage and transportation. The units can be set up within 2 minutes and are not dependant on any tools or machinery.
01 Bilna | Indonesia
01 Bilna | IndonesiaLaunched in November 2013, Bilna is an online store that sells products for babies, infants, as well as mothers. The company announced that it has closed series A funding raised from existing investors CyberAgent Ventures and East Ventures, as well as new investors DG Incubation (DGI), TMS Entertainment, and Golden Gate Ventures.
02 Renrendai | China
02 Renrendai | ChinaRenrendai is a Chinese online peer-to-peer lending service which is reported to have facilitated RMB 1 billion ($165.2 million) in loans as of August 2013, with a 276 percent year-on-year increase in the first half of last year. The startup announced its parent company, Renrenyou, received Series A funding from Trustbridge Partners and an undisclosed investor.
03 FlyData | Japan
03 FlyData | JapanFounded in 2011, FlyData is a Japanese startup based in Silicon Valley that makes big data storage on the cloud possible. The company also promises data analysts that they can move and analyze their data seamlessly and continuously on the cloud.
04 MetroPlate | Philippines
04 MetroPlate | PhilippinesRanked second in Startup Weekend Manila 2013, MetroPlate is a food delivery platform that focuses on healthy meals. Users can access the website and choose from a selection of healthy dishes cooked by restaurants that specialize in nutritious meals, which will then be delivered to the hungry users' doorstep.
05 Little Eye Labs | India
05 Little Eye Labs | IndiaIndia's Little Eye Labs is a testing and analytics tool for Android developers to improve app performance. The startup is a graduate of GSF's first accelerator program that began last year.
This week, the company announced that it has been bought by Facebook (FB), making it the social network titan's first acquisition in India.
06 Bukalapak | Indonesia
06 Bukalapak | IndonesiaBuilt in 2010, Bukalapak is one of the biggest C2C platform in Indonesia's crowded online marketplace scene. The company claims to excel in male-dominated categories like bikes, cameras, musical instruments, and computers. Bukalapak also recently revealed some data and progress that the company racked up in 2013.
07 Qraved | Indonesia
07 Qraved | IndonesiaQraved is a social dining directory and online reservation platform from Indonesia that went mobile, with it's brand new mobile booking app that is made available on both iOS and Android. The company is the first Indonesian startup to receive funding from 500 Startups. The seed investment was made alongside lead investor Rebright Partners and Skype co-founder Toivo Annus.
08 Social.gg | Thailand
08 Social.gg | ThailandSocial.gg is a new useful tool that can help users explore trends and hot topics on social media in Thailand. Similar to Google Trends or Twitter's trending topics, Social.gg gathers various trends on Facebook, in which users can check what the hottest topics of the moment are. This service is available to the public for free.
09 DealDozen | Philippines
09 DealDozen | PhilippinesStarted in March 2011, DealDozen is a daily deals site from the Philippines which was recently acquired by Asia Deal Group, the e-commerce group behind Streetdeal, for an undisclosed amount.
10 Saved | Malaysia
10 Saved | MalaysiaDeveloped by an eight-man team at Lentor, Saved is a new and slick personal finance and budgeting app for iPhone and Android that lets you set a budget and input what you spend. It then gives you simple analytics, based around either a graph or a calendar, about your expenditures.