The startup community in Vietnam has seen new developments, with a co-working space launched in Danang to help build an ecosystem in this central city; and an acquisition of Vietnam’s ticketing and hotel booking platform Pasoto by Singapore-headquartered Easybook. The value of the acquisition was undisclosed.
Danang incubator and Toong launch co-working space
The Danang Entrepreneurship Support Company Limited (DNES) has invested in the Danang Co-working Space (DNC), which was launched in October 1, a move seen as one of the efforts to turn the central city of Vietnam into a startup city by 2020.
Hanoi-based co-working space chain Toong is the operating advisor for DNC.
In addition to incubation programmes, DNES wants to provide the local community with a collective work space to help it more easily in delivering supportive services, it says in a press statement.
Danang has recently emerged as a potential hub for startups, besides Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City. As Vietnam is trying to spur entrepreneurship across many cities of the country, Danang is taking this advantage to introduce a slew of initiatives for startups.
The Danang-based incubator is kicking off its second boot camp, a six-month training programme at the new co-working space.
DNES was launched in January this year with a committed capital of VND30 billion ($1.3 million), backed by the city’s development fund and local investors. It has graduated the first batched of eight startups.
Along with the city’s development fund, Japanese venture capital firm Cyberagent Ventures and local funds, Tran Invest, Ho Nghinh Technology Innovation and Mekong Economic, are the incubator’s partners, according to its official website.
Toong started in September 2015 as the country’s first and largest co-working space chain. Earlier in 2016, it announced its second multi-million dollar fundraising round, following an over $300,000 investment in late 2015.
Prior to the launch of DNC, the operator has opened its third space in Hanoi.
Singapore ticketing platform Easybook acquires Pasoto
The company has not disclosed the deal even as it was closed in late August.
Pasoto.com, which offers an online platform to purchase bus, tour and train tickets as well as hotel booking, will become Easybook Vietnam Co Ltd.
Pasoto founder and CEO Lam Minh Chanh said he will be engaged in the company as an advisor. He founded Pasoto in January 2015 and started the business a couple of months later.
Its local competitor, Vexere.com, is also focusing on bus ticketing. Vexere has secured two funding rounds from Cyberagent Ventures.
Founded in 2005, Easybook, backed by OWW Capital Partners, has gain a significant presence in Singapore and Malaysia, and has expanded into Thailand, Indonesia, Taiwan and Brunei before Vietnam.