Startup Digest: Rakuten accelerator and Phandeeyar in news; Social Light fundraise

Photo: Reuters

Rakuten Accelerator, powered by Techstars in Singapore, has onboarded 10 startups to join its three month program while, in Myanmar, Phandeeyar completed its Startup Challenge 2018, which saw 37 startups pitching their ideas and six teams winning awards. Also, Philippine startup Social Light has raised funding.

Rakuten Accelerator gets 10 startups on board 

Rakuten Accelerator, powered by Techstars in Singapore, has on-boarded 10 startups to join its mentorship-driven accelerator program, according to the announcement.

The program, which kicked off July 16, is the first for Techstars in Southeast Asia. The startups were selected on their social messaging technologies based on the Viber application. Areas considered for the program included AI using chat bot, ad tech, VR and AR solutions, voice recognition, image recognition, translation and chat-based IoT.

The purpose of the program is to have a revolutionary way of communication between businesses and consumers through messaging.

The 10 startups who have joined the programme include: Additor from South Korea; And Global and Shoffr from Singapore; Elumium from United Kingdom; Groovy Antoid from Lebanon; Immersive Systems from the U.S; Jazzy Pay from the Philippines; Retarget Links from Canada; Rooit from Taiwan; and Talk-a-Bot from Hungary.

Also Read: Rakuten-Techstars partner to launch accelerator in Singapore

Phandeeyar Startup Challenge 2018 sees six tech teams win awards 

Yangon-based innovation hub, Phandeeyar completed its Startup Challenge 2018 which saw 37 startups pitching their ideas and six winning cash awards totalling $15,000.

Brocode, Dhobi.com, Lan Kyone, Fasion Geeks, Hydro Plant and Myanmar Young Agripreneurs were among the winners of the Startup Challenge.

In March 2018, Phandeeyar completed its second cohort of its six-month accelerator program, bringing up seven tech startups to have a revenue stream in the local market.

Phandeeyar makes a $25,000 investments in each startup graduating from its accelerator in exchange for an equity stake. Chate Sat and White Merak, born out of Phandeeyar’s accelerator, have raised investments from foreign and local investors.

Also read: Phandeeyar Accelerator injects $175k in seven tech startups in Myanmar

Social Light raises $470k led by Cerebro Labs

Philippines-based WiFi advertising company Social Light Inc has raised PHP25 million ($470,628) led by Cerebro Labs, a tech business incubator and accelerator from the Philippines, the company announced.

“With the help of our investor, Cerebro Labs, we know that we can succeed in our goals to give and spread free wifi to the Filipinos,” said Francis Simisim, President and CEO of Social Light Inc.

The proceeds of the latest financing raised will be used for Social Light’s Asia expansion plans and scale the team, said Simisim to this portal.

Vayafi, Social Light’s core product, has currently rolled out in the Philippines, Singapore, Australia, and New Zealand.

“I have seen how free WiFi in the country has been unreliable and costly to maintain. By incentivizing our stakeholders such as public places, telecommunications and other internet service providers, we can ensure that free WiFi expands further and makes good business sense by using Vayafi,” said Atencio.

Two years ago, Australian listed technology company Tomizone Inc planned to purchase Social Light but a year later both parties decided to withdraw the plan.

Also Read:

Tomizone buys out Philippine tech firm Social Light

Philippine regulator approves Landing’s $1.5b casino project

 

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.