e27, a Singapore-based tech blog and startup events organizer, announced today that it has secured USD 613K in funding from B Dash Ventures in Japan, Pinehurst Advisors from Taiwan, Thailand’s Ardent Capital, Dan Neary from Singapore, as well as other angel investors, whose names are undisclosed.
Founded in 2006, e27 — which stands for Entrepreneurs 27, with the number representing the median age for startup founders worldwide — focuses on reporting tech startup news, technology trends, and personalities in the ecosystem. It is also known for running Echelon, an annual tech startup conference held in Singapore. Other events that the company organizes include Echelon Ignite, a conference for younger startup ecosystems, and Founders Drinks, a monthly meetup around Asia.
With the investment, e27 will focus on broadening its operations in Southeast Asia, exploring more partnerships and joint ventures, growing its editorial team, and expanding the Echelon brand to more Asian cities.
This is its second round of investment; it closed the first round in early 2012 with 8Capita. The company was profitable last year, achieving a 20 percent year-on-year increase in revenue generated from a mix of events, advertising, and consultancy.
While events is the main revenue driver, the company foresees more income coming through advertising and content partnerships. It recently also relaunched 27x.co, essentially a database of startups and investors that’s very similar to CrunchBase.
Echelon 2012 was a huge success, having featured some of Asia’s most well-known startups including winner Builk, South Korean App Between, and mobile customer loyalty app Perx. This year, Echelon 2013 will be happening on 17 and 18 June, and is currently on a brand new hunt for the next batch of startups that could possibly take Asia by storm. As long as your startup is incorporated in an Asian country, and your product has not been featured in any of the earlier Echelons, you are definitely most welcome to apply. Read more
Feel like having a drink tonight in Singapore? Join this casual meetup and meet Eze Vidra, Head of Campus, Google London. Learn what it takes to run Campus London, one of the coolest coworking spaces in the city. Eze has worked at AOL and Gerson Lehrman Group and also blogs regularly about the Israeli tech startup ecosystem through VC Cafe.
When: Thursday 6 September, 2012
Time: 6.30pm – 8.30pm
Where: Shuffle Bistro Bar, Blk 3D River Valley Road #02-03, Clarke Quay Singapore 179023
If there is EventBrite in the West, in Japan, there is PeaTix. The number one social ticket platform in Japan, makes it very easy for event organizers to build good looking event page, distribute/sell tickets, manage RSVPs, promote event, collect fees, and manage check-ins. Since its release in May 2012, PeaTiX has supported over 2500 events, primarily in Japan. Founded in December 2011, PeaTix has managed to raised a total of $1.62M to date from backers such as 500 Startups, DG Incubation and Itochu Technology Ventures, among others.
PeaTix is founded by Taku Harada, who plays the CEO role as well as Emi Takemura, who is the Chief Marketing Officer. Taku founded PeaTiX together with his former colleagues at Amazon. Taku held various positions at Amazon Japan including head of its mobile and online marketing divisions. He also launched the iTunes Music Store in Japan while at Apple in 2005 and led its marketing team. On the other hand, Emi manages marketing activities for PeaTiX. Prior to co-founding PeaTiX, Emi was a Marketing Director at Disney Interactive Media Group in Japan, where she was a management staff. She also held management positions at both Excite Japan and Amazon.co.jp.
Taku and Emi will be sharing about how they managed to secure their fundings and the things to look out for when pitching to Japanese venture capitalist. With the Japanese aggresively setting up Southeast Asia funds and actively investing, this will be a valuable sharing session for startup founders. On top of that, the PeaTix founders will also share their thoughts on the Southeast Asia market. While we have been hearing a lot of views and interests from Japanese venture capitalists, this is a good chance to hear from Japanese startups.
When: Thursday August 30, 2012
Time: 7:00 PM – 10:00 PM
Where: Shuffle Bistro Bar, Blk 3D River Valley Road #02-03, Clarke Quay, Singapore 179023
For e27′s Founders Drinks this month, Vince Mundy of Your Ad Optimizer will share insights on how to optimize your Facebook Fan Pages. Vince will also provide some tips on increasing user engagement through various optimization strategies.
Vince has built up years of digital experience. Besides working on Your Ad Optimizer, which helps brands optimize mobile campaign, Vince was also the founder and CEO of OrangeShark, a community of online gamers. OrangeShark has amassed more than eight million registered users and was acquired by PurpleTalk. Vince also founded InstallMonetizer, which created industry leading Facebook Ads API product, AdParlor.com, as well as 3xROI, a boutique agency helping websites optimize their sales conversions. Read more
Medical tourism, defined as the practice of crossing borders for the purpose of getting healthcare, is huge. Patients Beyond Borders estimate the the global market size is around US$15 billion, based on roughly five million patients spending an average of US$3,000 per procedure.
But finding quality and affordable healthcare is like fumbling in a room blindfolded: There are so many service providers around, at varying levels of quality. Discerning which to pick becomes a repetitive chore.
Two startups, Singapore’s MediSherpa and Chicago and Taiwan-based HuliHealth, are determined to fix this. Both companies are building an extensive database of health care providers and doctors, listing their credentials, crowdsourced feedback, cost, addresses, and contact information. Read more
SnapDish, a food photo and recipe sharing app from Japan, is now available on T Store, a Korean Android app store with 2.5 million visitors a day, and qiip, an app store for the Japanese market.
Both T store and qiip are operated by SK Planet, a wholly-owned subsidiary of SK telecom. Besides the two new additions, SnapDish is also available on Google Play, au Market, and the Apple App Store. Read more
Taiwan startup Citydomo is putting an interesting twist to online reviews by adding a gamified layer.
Instead of simply creating a website and praying that users will flock to it to rant or rave about something, they’re incentivizing them with goodies like Jason Mraz concert tickets, spa treatment vouchers, and discounts at wedding service providers — all redeemable with Domo Dollars, which is the service’s virtual currency.
Citydomo isn’t restricted to food, and users can leave reviews for other kinds of establishments like spas, hotels, and retail stores. As such, it’s more similar to Yelp and less like Singapore’s HungryGoWhere. But unlike these two, a user will get 10 D$ for writing a review, and an additional 2 D$ for posting a photo of the establishment. Read more
Launched at DEMO Asia 2012 in March, Dropmyemail has since gone on a spectacular streak, scoring 630,000 registered users in 50 days.
It is essentially a cloud-based email backup service that lets users store emails from multiple accounts.
In a bid to increase virality and convince venture capitalists to invest in the company, Dropmyemail has revamped its referral program to introduce viral components that reward users for a variety of actions.
This change, the startup hopes, will lead to greater organic growth in its user base. It is currently seeking to raise a Series A round of between US$4M and US$7.9M. Read more