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S2E6: Why A Famous Digital Marketer Quit His Top Corporate Career For Startup Dream

Damien Cummings | June 15, 2020 close
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Thanks for listening to one of our most popular episodes, click the Play button! What would you do with your career if you were the head of your department at one of the world’s best companies? Would you stay or would you go? Would you embark on a risky startup […]

S2E5 Who We Are: COVID-19 and George Floyd Update

Chris Chong | June 8, 2020 close
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Thanks for listening, click the Play button! Hey, welcome back to season 2 of ramen to riches. It took me a long time to really think through what is going on right now in the world. If you’ve been following the news, it’s clear the world is in a state […]

S2E4: INSEAD Grad’s Startup Changes Food Ordering

Tim Wekezer | May 15, 2020 close
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Thanks for listening to one of our most popular episodes from Season 1, click the Play button! Ten years ago, ordering food was pretty much a hassle…it was like how you remember it when you were a kid, if you wanted delivery, you’d have to call hours ahead, and only […]

S2E3: How Coronavirus Has Changed Asian Culture

Chris Chong | April 10, 2020 close
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Hey, welcome back to season 2 of ramen to riches, I hope that you’re doing alright, with what’s happening now with COVID19, these are hard times, not only to record the podcast, but in every way. This feels like an episode of Black Mirror. Societies, economies and families are on the verge of crumbling. Actually all of 2020 has been pretty bad so far.

How A Startup Raised USD$2.9M After 4 Years of Struggling. Part 2

Aston Chia | March 29, 2020 close
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After 4 long years of struggling to build a product that customers actually needed and bought, Aston and his co-founder Zen from Overdrive Singapore slowly raised US 2.9Million but achieved the dream Government-backed investor, and you’ll find out how they did that in this episode. 

S2E2: Why This Startup Tracks 30,000 Sensors Across Singapore. Part 1

Aston Chia | March 15, 2020 close
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Founded in 2015 by technologists Aston Chia and Zen Chin, Overdrive’s customer portfolio include Sentosa, Nanyang Technological University, Fedex, Ascendas, the Ministry of Manpower in Singapore, and Volkswagen and Mazda in Malaysia via its local IoT partner. They’ve just raised US 2.9Million, find out how in this episode with Aston. Overdrive operates an IOT platform that automates data sensing of various types of assets within a business ecosystem, from vehicles and machinery, to goods and people. It leverages on a “mash-up” of different connectivity technologies and curated 3rd party devices, that is configured to optimally deliver business objectives such as real-time tracking and monitoring, exception alerting and command centre visualization.

On this episode, you’ll hear why he built a startup that tracks sensors all around Singapore. How many sensors does he track? 30,000. What does he track? Stuff, where thousands of kids, vehicles, machinery, you name it, are located in real-time, he can track anything. Is that creepy? Maybe a little, we talk about it, and how a humble, technically oriented guy developed himself into a salesman and because of that, has been able to charm investors, raising a very nice US 2.9 million dollars. The biggest message you’ll get in this episode- If he can do it, then so can you. 

S2E1: Monologue, on persistence and courage

Chris Chong | March 1, 2020 close
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At the end of season 1, which took 6 months to record and ended with 22 episodes, I just had nothing left to say after that, and that’s why I took a break before making season 2. It’s like when you’re at work, and you have a really good meeting, that feeling after, you’ve said everything you needed to say and also taken in a lot. Here’s what I learnt.

Hosting My First TV Show

Chris Chong | November 15, 2019 close
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Hi there listeners, First of all, my apologies for my radio silence over the last 6 months. Season 1 of the podcast ended with many great interviews with talented Entrepreneurs in Singapore covering a range of professional and personal topics, leaving me with many valuable introspections. In a way, it […]

Thanks for listening to Season 1. We’ll be back January 2020.

Chris Chong | August 1, 2019 close
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Thank you for listening to Season 1, our very first season at Ramen To Riches! We started Season 1 on October 22, 2018. Here are some of the stats: 28 Episodes 22,000 Visitors, who have had 37,000 Sessions On The Website Alone (not counting other channels, like Spotify, Apple Podcasts, […]

How to Take Your Startup From Ramen to Riches – Interview by Alex Leung

Alex Leung | April 8, 2019 close
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Chris Chong was just 21 years old when he sold his first startup Beeconomic to Groupon, achieving the entrepreneur’s goal of a million dollar exit.

Making Millions From Memes: Karl Mak, Co-Founder of SGAG, MGAG and PGAG. Part 2/2

Karl Mak | April 1, 2019 close
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Welcome back to part 2 of this 2 part series, if you haven’t checked out the first part, then I recommend listening to it first, where we explore the early days of Karl Mak’s journey building SGAG with his co-founder, Adrian. In this part, we discuss building relationships with clients, his future plans for SGAG and the Hepmil Group, and his experience raising SGD$1.3 million in pre-series A funding through angel investors.

Introducing Karl Mak, the very intelligent, measured, co-founder of Hepmil Group, best known as the holding company in Singapore of SGAG and other entities, whose content is now seen by over 10 million millennials across the region weekly.

Making Millions From Memes: Karl Mak, Co-Founder of SGAG, MGAG and PGAG. Part 1/2

Karl Mak | March 25, 2019 close
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Introducing Karl Mak, the very intelligent and well-spoken co-founder of Hepmil Group, best known as the holding company in Singapore of SGAG and other entities, whose content is now seen by over 10 million millennials across the region weekly.He talks about how important data and metrics are in order to discover strategies to create viral content, creating a proper content strategy for something as eclectic as comedy, and working with conservative clients to create buzz around issues that Singaporeans can relate to, even convincing their clients- big household brands- to make fun of themselves along the way in a pursuit to connect with millennials.He starts off by telling us about his startup, that essentially started off as a joke between two friends.After raising SGD$1.3 million in pre-series A funding through angel investors, I ask him whether he was literally scrolling through his phone to show investors his most popular recent memes.

Hey, Change The World You Live In

Chris Chong | March 18, 2019 close
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At the end of the day, that’s the point about life. It’s whatever you want it to be. It’s whatever lens you choose to see it through. Being average is so contagious it should be labelled by the medical industry as a communicable disease. That means it’s as easy as catching a cold. When you see someone else frown, those muscles around your mouth, they just start to naturally drop into a frown.

How To Build A Top Digital Media Company: TheSmartLocal Founder Bryan Choo

Bryan Choo | March 4, 2019 close
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Imagine you’re 18 years old, and in your spare time, you hang out with your friends at an internet cafe to play computer games religiously. That’s the childhood that most of the kids from my generation grew up in. We’d spend hours in an internet cafe. But I was never the best at computer games. In fact, I was crushed in nearly every game, even my favourite game, Starcraft. But imagine being the kid who was so good he’d go on to represent your country in computer games. That was Bryan Choo, the founder of TheSmartLocal, one of the biggest local digital media companies in Singapore.Listen to how a computer game geek used his skills and strategy as a national champion to then build a culture and lifestyle website that now gets 3-4 m page views per month, a Facebook page with 360k followers, and a Youtube page with 230k subscribers. It took him 7 years, but Bryan now develops viral content for millennials on a daily basis, and if you’re under 35 or Youtube is the first page you go to on the internet, it’s likely you’ve seen a video that one of his over a hundred staff have created. He also talks about taking on traditional media giants SPH and Mediacorp, and how he got his first big break.

My Story: Fall From Grace Feat. Mumbrella Asia Saga With Eleanor Dickinson. Part 2

Chris Chong | February 24, 2019 close
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My brother and I had a startup that had just been bought out by Groupon, the world’s biggest daily deal website, for an estimated $24 million according to the Straits Times. We made it on the front page of the national newspaper, I was busy representing Groupon on breakfast TV shows and on Channel NewsAsia, while my brother was busy moving our new offices to Harbourfront Centre. Enjoy part 2 of a 2 part series, don’t forget to listen to part 1 first.

How We Built A $24M Startup: Beeconomic To Groupon. Part 1

Chris Chong | February 17, 2019 close
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At 20, I took a break from my law degree to co-found my first startup, Beeconomic, which was fully acquired after 6 months by Groupon.

As Groupon Singapore co-founder, we created over 200 jobs and made history by helping Groupon become “the fastest growing company ever” (-Forbes and CNBC). After Groupon, I worked on a startup that failed, which taught me important lessons along the way.

After finishing my law degree, I joined a “Top 5” law firm in Australia as a legal intern that led to an offer in their M&A advisory practice.

I then joined Hong Kong’s oldest English newspaper, the South China Morning Post, as social media editor focusing on content and marketing. After achieving strong digital growth, Jack Ma’s Alibaba acquired the newspaper. After the paper was successfully sold, I left to pursue my passion for cooking.

After culinary school, I moved to Singapore to advise a $100M Japanese VC as a full-time advisor. A highlight is our $1M investment into a fast-growing, millennial-focused news platform.

I have served as a consultant to 60+ startups and I also volunteer as a mentor at an incubator. My goal now is to pay-it-forward by sharing knowledge through my semi-autobiographical podcast.

The F Word: Failure, Can We Talk About It? Part 1 Feat. Elisha Tan from TechLadies and Facebook

Elisha Tan | February 10, 2019 close
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Let’s both be real for a second, let’s talk about failure, small failure, big failure, surprising failure, embarrassing failure. It’s scary, just the sound of the word failure gives me goosebumps, I’ve been through it.

Whether you’re scared about the word itself, or you relish in talking about it as much as you can at parties and networking events until your friends say “enough, we get it, you failed”, then you’ll love today’s episode. Elisha Tan is like us, two people, a success and a failure. One Elisha is the founder of TechLadies, a volunteer platform that teaches ladies how to code, and Developer Programs Manager for Facebook APAC, the other is someone who spent four years on a startup before closing it down, repairing herself only to get fired from her new job for not being a culture fit after just 6 months.

She’s inspirational, in the way she describes her feelings of pain, sorrow and the realisation that it was going to be a bumpy road if she wanted to reach her lofty aspirations. It’s a feeling we all have when we know that our precious goals might be trampled by reality. I’ve failed and I ain’t afraid to say it, uhhuhh.

But you have to keep in mind, while you listen to this story, that it was her resilient mentality that has now landed her dream job at Facebook, where she essentially got to turn her side-hustle, into a full-time job at one of the best employers in the world. She took a break from her free catered meals at Facebook to chat with me about how she crawled out of the failure hole, and the character she gained from being lost in the wilderness for 5 years, which she lends to now landing her at her dream job. Take a listen as she first opens up about the challenges of being a founder with no technical experience.

Now, she’s a Developer Programs Manager for Facebook APAC – developer communities across Asia to reach 40,000 developers in the region, upskilling and helping developers with employment and startup opportunities.

LinkedIN’s King Chris Mohawk Reed: How To Build A Power Profile. Part 2

Chris Mohawk Reed | January 27, 2019 close
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On today’s episode, a young marketer from the UK moves to Singapore and then builds one of the biggest personal brands on LinkedIn. Chris Mohawk Reed has been named an Official LinkedIn Power Profile for every year since 2012 and has one of the world’s most viewed LinkedIn profiles with 55,000 followers.

LinkedIN’s King Chris Mohawk Reed: How To Build A Power Profile. Part 1

Chris Mohawk Reed | January 27, 2019 close
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On today’s episode, a young marketer from the UK moves to Singapore and then builds one of the biggest personal brands on LinkedIn. Chris Mohawk Reed has been named an Official LinkedIn Power Profile for every year since 2012 and has one of the world’s most viewed LinkedIn profiles with 55,000 followers.

Former Head of Singapore Tatler reveals his lessons about the super-rich. Part 2

Gilbert Cheah | December 23, 2018 close
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On today’s episode, hear the biggest lessons from one of Singapore’s purveyors of high society values. For over a decade he held the controls of the pages detailing the who’s who in the richest country in Southeast Asia, as leader of the high society magazine, Singapore Tatler.

Former Head of Singapore Tatler reveals his lessons about the super-rich. Part 1

Gilbert Cheah | December 23, 2018 close
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On today’s episode, hear the biggest lessons from one of Singapore’s purveyors of high society values. For over a decade he held the controls of the pages detailing the who’s who in the richest country in Southeast Asia, as leader of the high society magazine, Singapore Tatler.

Crazy Rich Asians Wedding Edition

Chris Chong | December 23, 2018 close
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Hey thanks for listening to today’s episode, I was just kind of caught gushing about Asian weddings, and I know that this isn’t really in the shows prerogative to talk about non business stuff, but I thought I’d open up a bit and talk about “cultured” things, hope you enjoyed this.

How To Crush Negative Emotions Without Using Food, Cigarettes, Or Alcohol. Part 2

Chris Chong | December 16, 2018 close
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Hi, welcome to part 2 of a series on how to crush negative emotions without using food, drugs, cigarettes or alcohol and I’ve been on every bender conceivable. So put down the shot glass, put out the cigarette, and slowly put down the chicken drumstick. Try a healthier alternative instead.

How To Crush Negative Emotions Without Using Food, Cigarettes, Or Alcohol. Part 1

Chris Chong | December 16, 2018 close
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Thanks for listening to part one, where we were able to break down why negative emotions exist and how you can change the way you think about them, in part 2 to this series I’m going to explore ways that you can replace food, cigarettes or alcohol with healthier alternatives that will set you up for a life of success, it will make you feel and look more beautiful.

An Entrepreneur Stands Up To Sexism and Misogyny. Part 2

Krystal Choo | December 9, 2018 close
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On today’s episode, hear why an entrepreneur believes getting up after a devastating loss is a narrative that’s more important than getting the prize itself. She’s a female entrepreneur, she’s fighting her inner demons, she’s fighting sexism and misogyny online, it’s Krystal Choo. Here’s why we’re telling this story. Just how badly are female entrepreneurs treated in our community? Do you think that a person’s appearance plays a factor in their success? How do you overcome a devastating loss like failure or bullying?

An Entrepreneur Stands Up To Sexism and Misogyny. Tickle’s Krystal Choo Part 1

Krystal Choo | December 9, 2018 close
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On today’s episode, hear why an entrepreneur believes getting up after a devastating loss is a narrative that’s more important than getting the prize itself. She’s a female entrepreneur, she’s fighting her inner demons, she’s fighting sexism and misogyny online, it’s Krystal Choo. Here’s why we’re telling this story. Just how badly are female entrepreneurs treated in our community? Do you think that a person’s appearance plays a factor in their success? How do you overcome a devastating loss like failure or bullying?

Truths About Entrepreneurship You’re Better Off Knowing From the Start. Part 2

Chris Chong | November 12, 2018 close
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This next episode will be about how you need to be resourceful and adaptable if you are trying to fit in a new environment. With entrepreneurship, your environment is constantly changing. Not only is your internal environment changing, your mind and your ideas, but your inner circle or startup is changing including the opinions of those closest to you like your friends or family, and then your external environment and outside players are also changing rapidly, like your allies and competitors. Obviously, you should take care of yourself first, your sanity, then your inner circle, and then your externals like partners or enemies. Also, the time I became a male host at a bar.

Truths About Entrepreneurship You’re Better Off Knowing From the Start. Part 1

Chris Chong | November 5, 2018 close
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I’m going to share a series about what entrepreneurship means to me and how I think it can change your life for the better, or for the worse.

Has The Startup Sense Of Community Eroded? Part 2

Chris Chong | October 19, 2018 close
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The modern world is isolating, but you can make an effort to fix that in your own particular area. When I moved to Singapore to start Groupon, we knew we’d want the help and support of anyone as we embarked on this scary new entrepreneurship journey. We went door to door on the street, leaving a note asking for contact info. We continually emailed everyone and used this to keep informed of everyone’s information.  It’s was like facebook, before Facebook could allow you to become socially lazy. You do have to make an effort, but if you’re feeling lonely, get to know your neighbour, don’t make yourself a stranger and you’ll feel safe knowing that your neighbour has your back.

Has The Startup Sense Of Community Eroded?

Chris Chong | October 17, 2018 close
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Welcome to today’s podcast in Singapore. I have to admit sometimes, and if you’re an entrepreneur, you know what I mean. I just feel so alone and isolated, even in the startup community.

INSEAD MBA’s Startup Changes How We Order Food

Tim Wekezer | October 16, 2018 close
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Introducing Tim, the Founder of Waitrr, he’s raised over a million dollars with his app that lets you order and pay with your mobile phone to removing one of the more annoying processes when you go to a restaurant. If you’re considering an MBA to further your career, or want to start a marketplace or an app in the restaurant industry, this podcast episode is for you.

How I Raised $55M For Sustainability Startup By Stanford MBA, Ex-McKinsey

Poyan Rajamand | October 12, 2018 close
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Hear how a Stanford MBA grad built his career at Unilever and Mckinsey, then ditched the corporate path to become an entrepreneur on a crusade to help the environment with a very unique business model. A business model where he would pay all the costs to install his technology and only be paid based on the money his clients would save on their energy bill. No upfront payment and he would carry all the risk. Introducing Poyan, the Co-Founder of Barghest Building Performance (BBP), he’s not only raised a series B but earned his company awards and partnerships with the Singapore Government.

Global Head Quits Corporate Job For Startup Dream

Damien Cummings | October 10, 2018 close
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Damien Cummings is one of Asia Pacific’s most recognised digital transformation leaders, having led digital or marketing departments at companies like Ogilvy, Samsung and Standard Chartered Bank. He’s now the CEO of Peoplewave, his startup that aims to help HR departments through their innovative software. He raised a seed round of $1.2 million, which is an impressive amount for a seed round, but behind his success, he’s had to fight huge personal battles.

Episode 0: Welcome to Ramen To Riches

Chris Chong | October 9, 2018 close
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This is Ramen to riches, where we break down what it means for entrepreneurs, idealists and trendsetters to have made it in our little corner of the world. We’re going to put on some air con and cool down on the get-rich-quick stories that our media likes to spread, and really talk more about the other side of success that few talk about. We’re going to dive into the bumps and valleys that unsettled even the best among us. About the times where the worst situations forced some of the most successful people living in Asia to question who they were, and what their purpose was.


  • cover play_circle_filled

    01. Who We Are- COVID-19 and George Floyd Update - 8:6:20, 3.45 pm
    Christopher Chong

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    02. How We Built A $24M Startup: Beeconomic To Groupon
    Aston Chia from Overdrive

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    03. S2E1: Monologue, on persistence and courage

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    S2E6: Why A Famous Digital Marketer Quit His Top Corporate Career For Startup Dream
    Damien Cummings

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