How one Singaporean entrepreneur is impacting the global craft spirits market

F&B veteran Michel Lu turns his hand to distilling boutique Asian flavours under The Orientalist Spirits brand, and also aims to champion other independent distilleries in the region. Turning 50 this year has offered veteran F&B entrepreneur Michel Lu time for introspection. “A brand done properly can last a lifetime, and even outlive you,” he muses, as he shares his…

Singapore-based HR tech startup StaffAny raises $722k in seed funding

StaffAny, a Singapore-based startup which offers a workforce management solution for companies with hourly workers, said it has raised S$1 million (about US$722,000) in a seed round led by Japanese marketing tech company FreakOut Holdings and angel investors. The startup’s angel investors include HR tech entrepreneur Kenji Niwa, as well as the founders of live-chat software firm Zopim; Lim Qing…

How Singapore’s second billion-dollar startup is revolutionising retail

Trax offers real-time product tracking services and counts Coca-Cola and Nestle amongst its clients. With retailers facing the risk of up to US$1t in losses due to out-of-stock products, according to a study by IHL Group, retailers are in an ever challenging position to ensure that the products lining their shelves are stacked and positioned with pristine accuracy. Against a…

Investment in water infra will spur growth: analysts

Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s announcement on the 73rd Independence Day on providing water connections to every household in the country at an estimated capital expenditure of over ₹3 lakh crore is expected to create huge business opportunities for corporates, said analysts. They said the move would provide employment to millions of people and may kick-start the investment cycle. “These are…

From Sleepless in Singapore to $70 Million for Budget Hotels

Amit Saberwal went through many a sleepless night when he first began pitching the idea that became Southeast Asia’s top online budget-hotels service, RedDoorz. Few financiers paid attention back then to a middle-aged former hotel sales executive. His vision of quality $20-a-night rooms seemed impractical for a largely neglected market. And rival outfits run by younger founders, like Rocket Internet-backed…

The startups turning their backs on hubs

Growing up in Coimbatore, Bengaluru seemed like a dream city to Dhruv Suyamprakasam, the place where every other person was an entrepreneur and the best jobs were. So, after college, he moved to India’s Silicon Valley with dreams of setting up his own healthcare startup. However, after almost 16 months, he realized that Bengaluru was not ideal for the healthcare…

Brick & Mortar Ventures launches $97 million construction tech venture fund

Construction technology is a growing sector, which is why Brick & Mortar Ventures has raised a $97 million fund to invest in both hardware and software for construction-related industries. The San Francisco venture fund was founded by construction tech investment veteran Darren Bechtel and is backed by high-profile corporate funding sources. The fund targets emerging companies developing innovative software and…

MAS strengthens scrutiny of shell accounts; Healthcare startups on average raise $13.7m per round

And Singapore is expected to ban domestic elephant ivory trade in 2021. From Reuters: Singapore’s central bank is raising its guard against money launderers increasingly using onshore shell companies to mask their transactions, a senior official said. Valerie Tay, who heads the anti-money laundering department at the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) said banks had closed accounts of several onshore…

Foodtech in Singapore through the eyes of startups

Consuming food is a daily affair for every person. But with increasing global population growth, there is a huge pressing need to provide more solutions in food production. But what is Singapore working on in the area of technologies on food? To understand the state of food tech in Singapore, I speak to three Singapore food tech startup players for…

Singapore’s GIC to invest up to Rs 4,400 cr in IRB Infra

The deal was approved by the board following which IRB has signed binding definitive agreements with GIC for a total investment of up to Rs 4,400 crore, including the funding of future construction costs. Singapore's sovereign wealth fund GIC will invest up to Rs 4,400 crore in the road assets of IRB Infrastructure Developers, according to a company statement. As…

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