Prestige Biopharma is one of the six companies looking to launch an IPO in 2021

Prestige Biopharma is one of the six companies looking to launch an IPO in 2021

SEA tech startups raised US$8.2bn in 2020 despite COVID-19 impact; The total number of deals stood at 333 in 2020, with mega deals from household names including Grab, Bukalapak, and Traveloka as well as gojek and Go-Pay accounting for about 50% of the year’s total investment volume. More here

6 SEA startups vying for an IPO in 2021; They are Grab, Tokopedia, Traveloka, Prestige Biopharma, M-DAQ, and JustCo; Singapore-based Prestige Biopharma is taking a different route: to South Korea; IPOs have become a measurable trend among startups in the region in the past year. More here

‘There’s no one-size-fits-all for corporate innovation, experimentation is key’: Sunway Group’s innovation chief; Matt Van Leeuwen believes that corporate VC has a long way to go in Asia, and a lot of corporates are only still scratching the surface. More here

In-depth: Female-led startups make strides, but venture funding lags; Recent reports demonstrate that female led startups are more likely to be bootstrapped, and less likely to be venture-backed than male-led digital health companies, which can lead to major hurdles for early-stage companies. More here

#dltledgers lands US$7M Series A to grow its blockchain-based cross-border trade digitisation platform; Investors include Regis & Savoy Capital (Bengaluru), Vittal Investments, and Walden International; Corporates and banks use #dltledgers to authenticate their commercial documents, contracts and bank interactions, enabling them to automate multi-party transactions, streamline processes and reduce cost. More here

Real estate developer sues Bukalapak for “illegal acts”, seeks US$6.2mn compensation; PT Harmas Jalesveva requested the court to confiscate 75% of Bukalapak’s shares as a collateral until a verdict is returned; The realty firm also filed a lawsuit against local property advisory and marketing company PT Leads Property Service Indonesia. More here

SEA’s e-commerce market to grow by 5.5%; According to a report by a research firm PPRO, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, and Vietnam are the top five SEA markets that are leading the charge; Within the region, the growing popularity of live streaming on e-commerce platforms cannot be ignored. More here

Traveloka-SCB10X JV to offer digital financial services in Thailand; Coined Trex Ventures, the JV will utilise Traveloka’s platform to distribute services, targeting travellers and lifestyle consumers; In Thailand, only 30% of the population owns a credit card, which offers significant opportunity for Traveloka. More here

Vietnam — one of the leading startup hubs of SEA; Many factors constitute Vietnam’s emergence as a startup hub of the region; These include- rising consumer spending, revenue growth in digital sectors such as e-commerce and fintech, growing interest of foreign investment funds especially Singaporean, Korean and Japanese VC funds, along with targeted support from the government. More here

Is the future e-commerce? Here’s why brick-and-mortar is still relevant in S’pore today; Opening a physical store can provide a brand’s customers with a seamless and integrated online and offline experience; With the online marketplace being so saturated, better in-store experiences can help to attract and retain customers more effectively. More here

Homebase has become first Vietnamese startup to get accepted into Y Combinator; The proptech startup has also received US$125K from the US-based accelerator; This comes off its recent fundraise from Troy Steckenrider III, Darius Cheung, VinaCapital, etc. More here

Yoan Kamalski steps down as CEO of Hmlet; As per a Business Times report, Peter Kennedy, senior advisor at Burda Principal Investments, an investor in Hmlet, is serving as its interim CEO starting this month; Kamalski’s stepping down is the latest in a series of departures by the top management; Hmlet CTO Pramodh Rai is set to leave in June. More here

Huawei backs Indonesia’s HPN in Sharia-based MSMEs’ digital push; HPN is part of the country’s largest Muslim organisation Nahdlatul Ulama; Under the plan, Huawei would help build the tech infra and nurturing digital tech talent among the Sharia-compliant MSMEs in line with the government’s initiatives to leverage the digital and Sharia economy potential for Indonesia’s economic recovery. More here

SGProtein builds SEA’s first large-scale contract manufacturing facility for meat alternatives; The facility is expected to commence production this year and will offer an initial production capacity of over 3K tonnes a year; SGProtein successfully raised US$3mn in its recent seed round. More here

5 startups handpicked for Cyberview’s CLLA accelerator programme; These startups, which successfully outpitched their peers before a panel of judges, are Roomah, Pandai, Synapse Innovation, LinkUp Smart Solutions, and Move Robotic; CLLA aims to provide a launchpad for startups and innovators to accelerate their business development and growth in Cyberjaya. More here

How upstarts and bigger players are jostling to BNPL pie in SEA; What is driving the trend is shift towards online retail and rising mobile payments adoption; As the model finds growing acceptance among millennials, Gen Z and cash-strapped consumers, BNPL players are seeing significant user traction and investor interest in SEA. More here

Funding sources — what’s the best for your startup?; Singapore, Hong Kong, and Jakarta are the leading startup ecosystems in Southeast Asia due to the presence of strong venture capital investors, availability of funding, and great talent pool. More here

Vietnam to trial 5G services on a large scale in 2021; A report shows VN’s digital economy reached a total value of US$14bn in 2020, US$2bn higher than that of 2019; Of the total number of digital service users, new users in Vietnam accounted for 41%; This makes VN the country with the highest rate of new Internet users in the region. More here

Business Mentor: Startup mistakes every entrepreneur should avoid; You may have thought of a unique product to sell, but without a market need for it, your business is bound to fail; Before you even focus on a particular product to sell, do market research on what is really needed and in demand; From there, you can make your products more appealing than your competitors’ offerings. More here

Smart technologies will continue to transform workplaces post-COVID-19; The widespread adoption of automated tools featuring developments such as AI, robotics, cloud computing and IoT has transformed manufacturing and industrial practices and the way we work. More here

Here are 5 reasons to expand your business to Philippines; With a population of almost 110mn people, a GDP of US$367bn, and a GDP growth of 6.6%, Philippines is a developing market economy—ranking 3rd highest in nominal GDP among other SEA countries, just behind Indonesia and Thailand; The main contributors to the Philippines’ GDP are the service, industrial, and agricultural sectors. More here

Why 2021 is the year to embrace creative leadership; Organisational culture is crucial to an innovative company, yet it can often seem like an elusive and intangible concept; Based on the results of the Adobe Creativity Quotient, only 29% of APAC leaders have succeeded in creating a culture that embraces creativity. More here

Crowdtesting is the key to smooth digital payments; Despite the obvious benefits, a lot of complexity goes into building and maintaining the underlying network that allows people to pay with a swipe of a card or by tapping a few buttons on their smartphones. More here

How central banks can support sustainable growth through green finance and enhance cross-border payments; Green finance today is hampered by challenges that reduce the incentive for investors to invest in green projects; Technology can be an enabler to overcome two of these challenges. More here

Image Credit: Prestige Biopharma

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