10 Asian startups complete muru-D Singapore program, raise $1.5m in funding

Paul Meyers, Head of muru-D Singapore, with the 10 graduating startups at Demo Day

Telstra-backed accelerator muru-D today announced that 10 startups from across Asia have successfully completed its six-month program in Singapore, managing to collectively raise about S$2 million ($1.5 million) in funding.

Four of the startups were from Singapore, two from Malaysia, while the remaining four came from Vietnam, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Thailand, the accelerator revealed in a statement.

The 10 startups, which belong to the program’s third cohort, have collectively secured more than 100,000 customers and amassed over S$500,000 in revenue. The approximately S$2 million of funding raised collectively by the startups is more than double the amount raised by those who graduated last year.

Eight of the 10 are Southeast Asian startups, including Singapore’s KNOW, a mobile communications and productivity platform specifically built for the over 2 billion newly connected workers in “desk-less” frontline jobs; Vietnam’s Ohana, an accommodation platform for students and transient professionals; and Thailand’s VokaBee, a digital teaching assistant that increases the efficiency and engagement of learning a new language.

Representing South Asia, meanwhile, are Bangladesh’ ShopUp, a credit appraisal platform for social media-based small businesses, and a market network for live music, Jambro, from Pakistan.

“It’s been so exciting to see the growth of the ten companies in this cohort,” said Paul Meyers, Head of muru-D Singapore. “The founders put in many hours of hard work to refine and improve their business models – resulting in real commercial success.  With the strong foundations built in the muru-D program, I am eager to see their future progress and success.”

As part of the six-month muru-D accelerator program, each startup receives S$75,000 in funding, mentorship, training and international networking opportunities. muru-D’s expert network helped the startups refine their business models, solutions and go-to-market strategies.

The graduating startups showcased their variety of services to an audience of potential investors and industry experts at Demo Day. From artificial intelligence and virtual reality, to digital solutions for real estate, hospitality and advertising industries, these startups focus on addressing needs and concerns of businesses and consumers, and more specifically, students, musicians and pet-lovers.

muru-D is the global startup accelerator backed by Telstra, which aims to support the best tech entrepreneurial talent in the Asia-Pacific region.

With accelerators programs held in Sydney, Melbourne Singapore, Brisbane and Perth, muru-D provides tailored acceleration services and investment to early stage technology companies and mentoring through an established network of partnerships in China, Israel, New Zealand and the US help Australia and Southeast Asia become centres of digital business.

Muru-D Singapore’s first cohort was inducted back in late 2015, and managed to raise raised a significant proportion of their seed rounds with two teams raising in excess of S$300,000 in their six months program.

Its backer Telstra is a telecom and technology company that offers a full range of services and competes in all telecommunications markets in Australia, where it operates the largest mobile and Wi-Fi networks.

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