SG Digest: Trendlines invests in Insectta; d:tribe Capital backs Australian AI startup

Singapore. Photo: Guo Xin Goh

The Trendlines Group has invested in Insectta, an early-stage Singapore-based startup focused on the extraction of biomaterials from insects. In a separate development, venture capital firm d:Tribe Capital has announced a ‘Series A’ follow-on investment in Shelfie, an Australian AI company that offers solutions for retailers.

Trendlines invests in SG’s Insectta

The Trendlines Group, through its Agrifood Fund, has invested in Insectta, an early-stage Singapore-based startup that focuses on the extraction of biomaterials from insects.

Founded in 2017, Insectta began its operation as an insect farm offering alternative proteins for animal feeds. It has now pivoted its business to focus on the extraction of biomaterials from insects.

The firm utilizes an ingredient called Chitosan, which is derived from crustaceans that have physiochemical properties, which are suitable for biomedical engineering, food and biodegradable plastic. The firm expects that the market of Chitosan will grow and can be mass-produced.

Using its own technology, the firm allows the extraction from Chitosan without the use of harsh chemicals.

“Insectta works in cooperation with research bodies in Singapore and has commercial relationships with various entities in East Asia. The company will operate from our AFIC incubator offices in the new complex we have established. We expect the commercialization of the company’s first products at the end of its first year of operation,” Trendlines Agrifood Fund CEO Nitza Kardish.

d:tribe Capital invests in Australian AI startup Shelfie

Singapore-based venture capital firm d:Tribe Capital has announced a ‘Series A’ follow-on investment in Shelfie, an Australian AI company that offers solutions for retailers.

The funding will be used by the company to expand its operations into the US and European markets.

Shelfie claims to help retailers grow their revenue and improve staff productivity by using AI and deep learning technology.

It uses cameras and AI to scan shelves, thereby taking images and enabling real-time stock reporting. A cloud-based advanced machine learning and image processing algorithm is used to analyse the shelf images.

The data is sent to the dashboard and mobile app, which are updated automatically to mobile devices informing floor staff to re-stock specific items. This is designed to identify sales trends via every SKU and provide real-time insights to optimise merchandising layouts.

d:tribe backs entrepreneurs focusing on technology. The firm has invested in over 50 companies to date in seed to early-stage companies across the consumer, enterprise, bio/healthcare and fintech spaces.

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.