PicStory, a photo sharing app by Singapore-based Risto Mobile Solutions, has hit 4 million monthly active users, the company announced today.
Available on Android and BlackBerry, the app enables users to compose collages of their photos and apply filters to them. They can then share their creations on social networks like Facebook, Twitter, and BlackBerry Messenger. Read more
Indie short films are not exactly the first thing that comes to mind as a niche for startups to tackle. After all, compared to formulaic Hollywood fare, short films don’t cater to mainstream tastes and as such have limited appeal.
That has not stopped Ho Jia Jian and Derek Tan from starting Viddsee though. Borne out of their passion for their craft, Viddsee is a video platform that screens short films from talents in Southeast Asia. Think of it as YouTube designed for filmmakers and art buffs.
As a just-launched minimum viable product, Viddsee doesn’t yet boast the sophistication of other platforms out there. It doesn’t host its own videos; the creators opted to put them on Vimeo instead. Read more
After running for two consecutive years, the East Ventures Alpha accelerator program won’t be returning to Jakarta this year, said Willson Cuaca, co-founder managing partner of East Ventures, an early stage fund based in Singapore, Jakarta, and Tokyo.
Meanwhile, its Japan Accelerator has held its screening process last year and has been mentoring startups. Unlike the Indonesian version, it does not have a formal 100-day boot camp, which means it functions more like a traditional seed stage fund and incubator.
Willson does not rule out the possibility that Alpha will return to Indonesia, although it would have to depend on the ecosystem’s readines. For now, East Ventures will focus on its early stage funding activities. Read more
DailySocial wants to take you on a road trip with them to discover the next batch of promising software developers, designers, and aspiring tech leaders throughout Indonesia.
Noting the difficulties of reaching out to Indonesia’s top talents, who are mostly located outside the capital city of Jakarta, DailySocial hopes this new initiative, DSCVR (short for Discover), will help overcome this problem.
While it is common to associate batik with Indonesia, a rising number of people are realizing that this large Southeast Asian nation is making waves in the regional technology startup scene.
With over 240 million people, Indonesia boasts a favorable mix of market opportunity, local and foreign talents, and increasing support for technology-focused initiatives. DailySocial is one such team dedicated to this aim. It has run three successful SparxUp Awards that recognized the country’s best and most promising tech startups and has even gone to various cities across the country to seek out and connect local talents.
Indonesia’s Scoop, a mobile newsstand app, announced today that it has signed an exclusive deal with Gramedia Book Publishing Group that will see over 10,000 local books and novels from the publisher make its way into SCOOP’s web store, which has also just launched.
The collection adds to Scoop’s existing cache of 9,000 books, magazines, and newspapers. Gramedia is a prolific book publisher in Indonesia that pumps out over 50,000 local books a year, with a tenth of them being new entries.
Users can now proceed to the web store to make purchases. Their items can then be shared with up to five devices, all of which will require the Scoop mobile app to view the book or magazine. The web store is offering discounts of up to 91 percent and will throw in a free second-year subscription for every annual subscription made to a title.
Already a leading digital publisher in Indonesia, Scoop’s new web store can eventually increase its reach in Indonesia and beyond since purchasing on the web is easier than doing so on a smartphone with its limited screen real estate.
Touchten, one of Indonesia’s top mobile game developers, has been very busy in China lately. In January, it launched Sky Beauty — a localized spin-off of its popular Infinate Sky game — and apparently has been doing rather well.
The company announced today that within one week, Sky Beauty, a first-person aircraft shooter, has achieved 100,000 downloads and about 10,000 daily active users on China’s iOS App Store. Sky Beauty was localized in partnership with Yodo1, an apps publishing platform that provides a set of tools to help apps succeed in the country.
China is an interesting market for Touchten. It claims to have a ‘secure foothold’ in the United States, with the country making up the largest segment of its user base. So it makes sense for the company to target China’s rapidly growing Middle Class population, which accounts for the most number of iOS and Android activations in the world (even larger than the US). Read more
SnapDish, a recipe sharing app designed by Japan-based Vuzz, announced today that it has launched on the Kindle Fire. It has also added supported for seven languages, bringing the total to 11.
The mobile social network is like an Instagram for food. Users can snap pictures of their home-cooked food with the app, beautify the photos, and share it with their friends. They can write down their recipes to accompany the pictures, and others can ‘like’ or comment on these food posts. Read more
Lazada, Rocket Internet’s Amazon clone which is active in Southeast Asia, announced yesterday that it has received an investment from German retail group Tengelmann, a regular Rocket Internet investor. According to TechCrunch, the funding amount is close to USD 20M.
The e-commerce company has been raising money at a furious clip. In September last year, it received an estimated USD 50M to USD 100M from investment bank JP Morgan. This was followed by USD 40M from Swedish investment firm Kinnevik and another USD 26M from Summit Partners. Read more
KakaoTalk, a popular chat app from South Korea with 27M daily active users, now has a new Schedule feature that lets friends make appointments with one another from within the app.
The new capability, announced yesterday, adds to an already extensive feature set which includes games, voice chat, and purchasable emoticons. This raises the stakes in Asia’s mobile chat battle, where Kakao faces stiff competition from Line, WeChat, and Whatsapp, and Facebook Messenger. Read more
Klik Eat has announced yesterday that it has received an investment from Yume no Machi, a JASDAQ-listed Japanese firm that operates online food ordering service demae-can.com, which lists more than 11,200 restaurants in Japan. Terms of the deal were undisclosed.
Following this investment, Rie Nakamura, president of Yume no Machi, and Masateru Kaneko, its Financial Accounting Manager, will join Klik Eat’s board of directors. The founders, Michael Saputra, Andrew Pangestan and Willy Haryanto, will continue to assume control of the site.
Launched in January 2012, Klik Eat enables customers to order food online, by phone, or using instant messaging services. So far, it has sent IDR 1.8B (USD 185K) to its 175 restaurant partners in the span of a year.
One of Klik Eat’s competitors is FoodPanda, a well-funded food ordering service by Rocket Internet that operates in 9 countries in Asia. Room Service Deliveries is also a major player: It operates in Indonesia, Malaysia and Singapore, and recently merged with Dealguru to consolidate its services.
Japanese firms have been actively investing in Southeast Asia in 2012, and it looks like this trend is set to continue this year. GREE Ventures, GMO Venture Partners, CyberAgent Ventures, and Global Brain are just some of the companies that have made advancements into the region.