500 Startups invests $200k in Cambodian news portal Khmerload

Visual from Khmerload Facebook page.

Cambodia-based Khmerload, a news portal modelled after New York-based social news and entertainment portal Buzzfeed, has secured a $200,000 investment from 500 StartupsThe transaction was first reported by Voice of America, Cambodia.

Launched five years ago, this latest investment places the valuation of the site in excess of $1 million says its founder and CEO In Vichet. According to the company, proceeds from the latest investment will facilitate and accelerate its expansion into Vietnam and Laos.

Vichet credited his company’s ability to secure 500 Startups as an investor to possessing a strong team and compelling product, as well as being scalable, given that it is reportedly amongst the leading websites in Cambodia.

In a statement to VOA Cambodia, he explained: “So we showed them that we are in the top three websites in Cambodia. We also have traction in Myanmar, where we recently expanded. So they see that we have done a lot while already generating revenue. Some Silicon Valley investors even invest in startups that do not generate income, but in our case we were already making money, so they saw our potential.”

Khailee Ng, the Southeast Asia-based managing partner of 500 Startups, noted that Khmerload’s potential was regional in basis, explaining to VOA Cambodia: “Getting to the top media position behind Facebook and Google’s properties with such a lean budget is something not many entrepreneurs across Southeast Asia have done. I’ve actually never seen anything quite like it. And to be profitable, yet have increasing traffic growth rates? This investment decision is easy.”

It initially grew its traffic on the basis of viral content and relying heavily on tabloid and entertainment content, which helped grow its reach in Cambodia. This also helped drive its expansion into Myanmar, where it operates Myanmarload. It has conducted a successful pilot in Indonesia as Indonesiaload and is incorporated in Singapore as Mediaload.

According to Vichet, with its growth, it has diversified its content offerings, including general knowledge, technology news and language resources.

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Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.