While traditional media in the United States have been reeling from the digital media revolution, registering millions in losses, shutdowns, and layoffs, their counterparts in Southeast Asia have been insulated from its devastating effects.
But maybe not for long.
Well aware that the window to adapt is fast closing, the region’s big media are finally getting more serious about investing in technology. Take this recent piece of news as an example: Scoop, a popular digital newsstand in Indonesia, has raised SGD 3M (USD 2.4M) in Series B funding from Kompas Gramedia, the country’s largest media conglomerate.
It’s certainly a good result for Scoop, which previously raised SGD 1M in Series A funding, hinting at a substantial increase in valuation for the company. The service currently has 210k monthly active users, with 90 percent coming from Indonesia.
Willson Cuaca, CEO of Apps Foundry, the company behind Scoop, says that this is the first non-controlling minority stake the media giant has taken in a foreign entity (App Foundry is based in Singapore). Prior to this, Kompas has either been developing its own products or acquiring other companies.
This significant development is no isolated incident. Read more
MediaCorp, a government-linked media company in Singapore, has a poor record in e-commerce businesses. Its attempt at daily deals crashed and burned, while its online bookstore venture ilovebooks.com received no love from consumers.
Now comes news that the company, which is monopolizing free-to-air television in the country, has launched its own subscription commerce concept, called The Little Black Beauty Box (a mouthful, I know). Consumers were able to subscribe to it on styleXstyle.com, a MediaCorp-owned fashion e-commerce site, since March.
While the third time may be a charm, there are several factors that may prevent the venture from taking off. Read more
Bet you didn’t know that MediaCorp, Singapore’s largest broadcaster, had a daily deals site of their own. Well, we just found out about it today, and it is shutting down.
It’s called Mocca Perks, and it offers anything from beauty treatment to digital cameras. SGE was notified about their impending shut-down by a friend over at BoxinBlue.com, who received a message from them via email. Read more
Teo Ser Luck, Minister of State for Trade and Industry (left), with Beh Weng Wei, grand prize winner of the YEA.
Malaysian Beh Weng Wei, founder of Frambie, an online premium picture frame store, has won the 2nd Young Entrepreneur Awards (YEA), a competition jointly organized by Canon Singapore and MediaCorp.
The ceremony, held on 24th February, saw him walk away with S$10,000 (US$8,000) worth of Canon business products and S$7,000 in cash prizes, sponsored by Canon, MediaCorp, Spring Singapore, and Nanyang Technological University.
Frambie allows users to upload their images and photos to the site, and pick personalized frames for them. The final product will then be printed, produced, and delivered to the customer. Read more
RIP Billy Mays (1958 to 2009)
Remember those As-Seen-On-TV infomercials selling the most incredible products? Like that magical cleaning squirt that will make your whites whiter, and your brights brighter? Or that compact gym equipment that promises you washboard abs in six weeks, flat?
Now, entrepreneurs, you have a chance to become the next great TV salesman, like the amazing Billy Mays. In this special, limited time offer, MediaCorp, Singapore’s number one (and only) broadcaster, is giving you the chance to sell your products to thousands of people!
Today, Facebook is an essential tool in any marketer’s arsenal. Which is why we decided to feature a list of top 30 Facebook Pages by businesses. The brands in this continuously-updated list are ranked according to the number of ‘likes’ and must be either a) companies started in Singapore b) companies started by Singaporeans c) international brands with a Singapore Facebook Page. Read more
Having been in the mobile app creation business for the last year or so with 2359 Media, founders Wenhan Zhou and Hongting Wong realised that the long development timelines and costs associated with app development had been putting off parties interested in mobile, even if they saw the value of having a mobile app. Read more
Tucked away in a nondescript industrial building along Henderson Road is the headquarters of Singapore’s first artiste management agency Fly Entertainment. Initially surprised that an agency for stars like Allan Wu and Beatrice Chia-Richmond was housed in such an unassuming location, this interviewer’s feeling of disbelief eroded when talking to Fly Entertainment’s Founder and CEO Irene Ang. The office’s understatement is an extension of Irene Ang’s down-to-earth nature, one that belies the business savviness of the entrepreneur Irene Ang in, what is arguably, the, if not one of the, most cutthroat industries in Singapore.
Irene is probably most recognizable as Rosie Phua, the wife of Singapore’s most beloved ah-beng Phua Chu Kang. As she would tell it, the role was one that she stumbled into – while still an insurance agent, Irene had been working as the ‘warm-up’ for the show ‘Under One Roof’ when she was spotted and asked to audition for the titular role.
It might seem strange that an insurance agent who entered into the entertainment industry just to meet more people (and hopefully sell more policies) was able to attain considerable achievements as an actress, but those beginnings reveal the secret recipe to Irene’s success in life – set a goal, have faith that it can be reached, pursue the goal with gusto, execute with a focus on being excellent, slam into walls, learn and do it all again. Read more
Podcast: Play in new window
Our friends at Tech65 start their weekly podcast on the following issues that dominated the tech landscape last week:  Google Street View Singapore,  gothere.sg’s Street Image,  MediaCorp radio stations back on Internet,  The End Of The CrunchPad and  Trinity concept phone. Do click and check out their latest podcast here.