Startups • Entrepreneurs • Digital economy

ShopBack raises US$45 mil in latest funding round
SINGAPORE (Apr 10): ShopBack, the rewards and discovery platform, has secured US$45 million ($60.9 million) in its latest funding round, bringing the company’s total funding to US$83 million. This latest funding round sees new investors, including co-leads EV Growth and Rakuten Capital, as well as EDBI, a government-linked strategic investor, along with other existing investors. Following ...
Grab sets sights on US$6.5 bil capital mark
SINGAPORE (April 8): Grab Holdings is expecting to rake in further US$2 billion ($2.71 billion) in funding to bring its total capital raised this year to US$6.5 billion, following its Series H round which saw SoftBank and other key strategic investors invest over US$4.5 billion in the ride-hailing app. Last month, Grab secured a US$1.46 billion investment from SoftBank Vision Fund. Both Grab ...
Singapore's biggest online mall Qoo10 fights Alibaba with blockchain
(Apr 3): In the last decade, Ku Young Bae—a serial entrepreneur and South Korean transplant—has built Singapore’s biggest e-commerce company and fended off giant rivals like Alibaba, Amazon and Tencent. Now he’s keen to expand beyond his home base into Southeast Asia. To do that, and to compete with his cash-rich rivals, he’s hatched an audacious plan to unleash the efficiencies of ...
Thinking of starting an e-commerce business? Here's what you need to know
SINGAPORE (Mar 26): Despite being a population of active mobile users, more Singaporeans are still preferring to shop online using desktops rather than their smartphones, according to a new report released by Picodi. Based on the global e-commerce platform’s internal data for 2018, just one out of three (35%) online retail transactions made in Singapore was made with the use of a mobile ...
EY calls for applications for its new startup incubator programme
SINGAPORE (Mar 18): EY is calling for applications to its incubator programme – EY Foundry – for early stage start-ups in the accounting, tax, fintech, legal tech and regulatory tech space in Singapore. Successful applicants will be announced at the official launch of the program in June 2019. Up to five startups will be offered a six-month rent-free residency at the EY wavespace in ...
First-time female founder nabs US$25 mil to expand health site
SINGAPORE (Mar 13): CXA Group, a Singapore-based health service backed by Facebook co-founder Eduardo Saverin, raised US$25 million ($33.9 million) by selling convertible debt to new investors including HSBC Holdings Plc as it expands in Asia. Other investors include Singtel Innov8, Telkom Indonesia MDI Ventures, Sumitomo Corp. Equity Asia, Muang Thai Fuchsia Ventures, Humanica Pcl and Heritas ...
Temasek's ST Telemedia starts AI startup to serve Asian firms
SINGAPORE (Mar 11): ST Telemedia, a unit of Singapore state investment firm Temasek Holdings, has set up a startup to help Asian companies adopt artificial intelligence and cloud technologies, in line with the city-state’s ambitions to transform the economy through technology. The startup, called Leap, has grown its team to 60 AI and cloud professionals since it was established 10 months ...
Grab secures US$1.46 bil in fresh capital from SoftBank Vision Fund
SINGAPORE (Mar 6): Grab Holdings Inc says it has secured US$1.46 billion ($2 billion) of fresh financing from Japan's SoftBank Group Corp to help fund its expansion. The capital raised through the nearly US$100 billion SoftBank Vision Fund brings the total amount raised by Grab in its latest funding round to more than US$4.5 billion, the ride-hailing company said in an emailed ...
AirAsia launches venture capital fund to back startups in Southeast Asia
(Mar 5): Malaysian budget carrier AirAsia Group said on Monday it was launching a venture capital fund in the United States to invest in startups seeking to enter or expand in Southeast Asia. The fund, called RedBeat Capital, will focus on post-seed-stage startups in travel and lifestyle, financial technology, artificial intelligence and cybersecurity. AirAsia is partnering with San ...
Alibaba bets on Frenchman to lead high-stakes Southeast Asia expansion
(Mar 4): In December, Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. put Pierre Poignant in charge of Lazada, the subsidiary spearheading the Chinese e-commerce giant’s high-stakes Southeast Asia expansion. The choice was out of character for several reasons. Poignant is a professional manager—a type Alibaba supremo Jack Ma has long disdained. He was part of Lazada’s founding ...