Asia Digest: Proximity Finance, Qualee Technology, RealStake raise funds

Qualee Technology co-founders Charley Zuidinga and Vipula Samarakoon

Singapore-based startups Qualee Technology and Real Stake and Myanmar microfinance firm Proximity Finance are in the news for raising fresh funding.

Myanmar’s farmer-focused Proximity Finance secures $14m

Promixity Finance, a farmer-focused financial institution in Myanmar, announced that it has raised $14 million in equity funding to further expand its client base and support more farmers in the country.

The funding round was backed by impact-focused investment firm Finnfund, Nordic Microfinance Initiative, and development finance company Proparco.

The funding will also support an increase in loan sizes and the diversification of products offered by Proximity Finance. The firm is the microfinance arm of Proximity Designs, which provides farm technology, agronomy advice, and finance services to small farms across Myanmar.

HR tech provider Qualee Technology raises $1m

Singapore-headquartered HR tech provider Qualee Technology has raised $1 million in a seed funding round anchored by Tandem Technology Partners.

In a statement, Qualee said the fresh funds will be used to extend features available on the platform and expand its team across technology, consulting, marketing, and support.

The startup uses cloud and mobile app technology to automate procedures and procedures in employee onboarding and engagement. The funding comes as the coronavirus pandemic continues to challenge workplaces and reduces opportunities for firms to observe workforce behaviours due to work-from-home arrangements.

“Many organisations have been forced to furlough staff recently and using Qualee allows employers to remain connected with displaced staff and quickly reinitiate as conditions improve,” said Bob Boughner, Managing Partner at Tandem Technology Partners.

Online investment platform RealStake secures seed funding

RealStake, a Singapore-incorporated fintech company, announced that it has raised an undisclosed amount of funding in its seed round from 500 Startups Vietnam and other Vietnam-based angel investors.

The startup, which offers a digital investment platform to Southeast Asian users, with an initial focus on Vietnam, launched in 2019 by enabling retail real estate investment through fractional homeownership.

Financial literacy and digital financial engagement are accelerating rapidly in Vietnam and the region, according to 500 Startups Vietnam General Partner Eddie Thai.

“The booming middle classes will seek increasingly diverse and sophisticated ways to protect and accumulate wealth. The team of operators and investors behind RealStake have a real shot at unlocking this massive potential.”

 

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.