Tuesday, 29 April 2014 00:00

8 New Startups To Watch In Asia

 

1. Beatrobo | Japan
Tokyo-based startup Beatrobo is a global, social music service that uses customizable robot avatars as a conduit for sharing songs and discovering new artists. The startup has just received series A investment from Japanese convenience store chain Lawson.

 


Chinese social network Weibo has been accused of being a Twitter clone. That may not be entirely accurate, but certainly Weibo would have loved to copy Twitter’s 73% stock jump on its first day of trading last year.

The results haven’t been quite as spectacular, but Weibo made a nice pop, reaching as high as 40% above its debut price as of 1:58pm EDT, nearly two hours after it began trading on the NASDAQ. By the end of the trading day, Weibo shares settled up 19%, at $20.24.

Published in Deals & Funding


Smartisan announced recently it closed the funding round at RMB 180 million (US$29 million), placing its overall valuation above the RMB 1 billion (US$161 million) mark. The company didn’t reveal where the money came from, but thanked previous investors in the announcement.

Published in Deals & Funding


iChuangye, a Kickstarter-like crowdfunding service in China previously known as 5ichuang, today held its first-ever demo day to debut projects that are raising funds on the platform.

CEO Gu Bing, who preferred to name himself as chief service officer of the site, since he consider his works as offering services to entrepreneurs and venture capitalist in an effort to bridge their demands.

Published in Deals & Funding

We visited demohour.com, Chinas leading tech-focused crowdfunding site. The site seems to be doing better every time we visit. This month had more new projects raising larger amounts of funding than we’ve seen in the past. Our top picks have all reached their goals but are still raising money.

Published in Deals & Funding


Online food ordering site Meican has secured US$10 million in series B funding to help it grow and expand into more cities across China. Nokia Growth Partners was the lead investor in Meican this time, along with first-round investors KPCB. Meican – which is roughly pronounced "may-tsahn", back in 2011 when starting up covered about 9,500 restaurants only in the Beijing area. Since then it has grown to have partnerships with 35,000 restaurants and fast food joints in five cities – the capital, plus Shanghai, Guangzhou, Shenzhen, and Tianjin.

Published in Deals & Funding
Monday, 03 March 2014 21:10

Asia's Power Businesswomen, 2014

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

 

Published in Features

Li Ka-Shing who is ranked as Asia’s wealthiest man according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index, with a net worth of $28.8 billion, was recently photographed scrambling artificial eggs. For a man with that much money you may indeed be asking yourself why, but these eggs have been produced by a company called Hamton Creek, a Silicon valley startup. The CEO in the photo pictured with Li Ka-Shing is Josh Tetrick who has just received US$ 23 million in a round of investment from Li. The company is now planning a major expansion into the Asian market. The company aims to reduce costs significantly in the egg market by introducung the lower cost substitute. The interesting thing about this deal is not just the nature of the business but the growing trend in which Silicon Valley start ups are now going over to Asia to seek new funding and tap wider markets. This trend happened over the last 10 years in which startups from the valley targeted Europe and European investment.

Published in Deals & Funding

 

Date: February 28th 2014 (Friday)
Time: 5:30pm – 8:30pm
Venue: Room CBC, Chow Yei Ching Building, HKU

Organiser

A first time, "flagship technology event" to be heled at the Hong Kong Univeristy (HKU) campus. If you want to hear about some mind-blowing tech ideas and plans from global tech companies and startups, then you will want to join on the 28th for “The Future of Technology: How Tech Will Change Your Life”.

The event is being held by TecHKU and the Faculty of Engineering, and is to be hosted by Napoleon Biggs of Hong Kongs from Web Wednesday. 

 

Keynote speakers include:

Evernote - Mr. Troy Malone, Asia Pacific General Manager of Evernote; and Mr. Jeremy Yuan, Marketing Director at Evernote

Evernote is the popular, multi-platform notetaking app. Also known as Yinxiang Biji in China, they are also the makers of Skitch, Penultimate, Evernote Web Clipper, Evernote Food and Evernote Clearly. By 2012, the five year old Evernote has 34 million users.


Easy Taxi - Mr. Blake Larson, Managing director at Easy Taxi

Easy Taxi is the largest smartphone taxi booking app in the world. Founded only in 2012 in Brazil, the free app has expanded now to 26 countries and 82 cities, including Hong Kong. The company also runs a business solution for bars, restaurants and hotels.


Slicify - Mr. Steve Cook, Founder and Chief Technology Officer of Slicify
Slicify is a crowd-sourced computing platform powered by a global network of home computers, headquartered in Hong Kong. It provides a low cost alternative to traditional cloud computing solutions and gives home PC owners a way to earn money off their hardware.


Anxbtc - Mr. Ken Lo, CEO of Asia Nexgen Bitcoin Exchange
ANXBTC Bitcoin Exchange provides a safe platform for buying and selling bitcoins. They are also launching the world’s first retail bitcoin store in Hong Kong on the same day of this event (118 Connaught Road West!).


Skydrone -  Mr. Patrick Kosiol, Founder of Sky Drone
Sky Drone is a small Unmanned Aircraft Systems vehicle that takes first person view videos developed by the Hong Kong based Skylab Mobilesystems Ltd.


 

Registration information, limited seats:

For more details visit the official page here

 

Saturday, 15 February 2014 08:00

10 startups in Asia that caught our eye

Here's our newest round-up of the featured startups this week. If you have startup tips or story suggestions, feel free to email us or tell us about your startup by emailing us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

01 Bilna | Indonesia

Launched 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

Renrendai 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

Founded 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

Ranked 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

India'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

Built 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

Qraved 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

Social.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

Started 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

Developed 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.


 

 

Published in Features