Thanks for listening to one of our most popular episodes, click the Play button! In this episode, hear how an Iranian-born Swede, now a Singaporean PR, achieved the near-impossible by raising $55 million dollars for his startup that aims to make buildings more energy-efficient, using technology to save clients money […]
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.
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.
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.
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.
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 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.
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.
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.