10 Inspiring Women Shaping Asia’s Startup Ecosystem

10 Inspiring Women Shaping Asia’s Startup Ecosystem

by Graham D Brown

Special Feature: Female Entrepreneurs in Asia

There will come a time when we will stop talking about “female entrepreneurs” and only “entrepreneurs”… but we are not there yet. There is a long way to go. But here in Asia, we are seeing rapid progress.

It’s not a shortage of ambition or talent, it’s a shortage of media coverage. It’s all very organizing programs to support female entrepreneurs, but real change happens in the stories we share and tell to the next generation.  The more successful female entrepreneurs we showcase, the more the next generation will have role models that make them think less about being a pink Disney princess and more… “I can be kickass too.”

Asia is a hotspot of female talent in the startup space right now, part due to the fact that the ecosystem is growing so rapidly. From trailblazing startup exits to managing government startup programs, here are 10 women we interviewed on ATP Stories who are shaping the Asian Startup Ecosystem in their own unique way.

Kineret Karin – 2 Successful Exits in Singapore

Kineret Karin is an Israeli entrepreneur based in Singapore. Kineret made the move from working in the safe environment of pharmaceuticals to starting her own business in food retail with Yoav Elgrichi. Her initial iteration of Singapore Dine struggled to gain traction but after a significant pivot, the company grew rapidly. Singapore Dine was eventually acquired by Food Panda for undisclosed terms. Kineret says regardless of the money, she’d still want to be actively working on new projects ...
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Ashley Galina – Understanding Chinese Consumers and Their Social Media Trends

Ashley Galina Dudarenok is a leading authority on the Chinese consumer and their social media market. Originally from Vladivostock, Russia, Ashley later lived in the UK, New Zealand, China and now, where she’s based, in Hong Kong. Ashley is fluent in Mandarin, English, Russian and German. Ashley is founder of Chozan, which describes itself as the most comprehensive guide to Chinese Social Media and Alarice, a social media agency aimed at the Chinese market. In this interview Ashley walks u...
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Michelle Katics – CEO Portfolio Quest, former Fed Reserve and IMF

Michelle Katics joins us today from Singapore. She’s the CEO of Portfolio Quest and Chairman of Bankers Lab - two organizations focused on shaping fintech, training and talent. Her illustrious career spans roles at the Federal Reserve, The IMF and Standard Chartered. Nominated to the Women in FinTech Power List, a FemTech Leader, Michelle’s story is both curious and inspiring. Meet the banker turned entrepreneur whose lived everywhere from Cleveland to Chicago to Chiang Mai.
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Karena Belin – Building Hong Kong’s StartUp Ecosystem

Karena Belin, Co-Founder of WHub, is a pillar of the Hong Kong Startup scene and passionate about technology, entrepreneurship and fostering the ecosystem. Deeply immersed since 2013, she has taken on engagements as speaker, mentor and judge at events and organisations such as the Chicago Booth GNVC, Google EYE, NexChange (FinTech), IFLR Conference, RISE Conference, Tech Open Air Berlin, Techstars StartupWeekendHK & Startup Next Pre-Accelerator, global Merlin YPO program and Poly U Entreprene...
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Honey Kathuria – CEO Kowrk

Honey Kathuria joins us today from Mumbai India. She is the founder of Kowrk - a platform that enables the future of work by connecting users with coworking spaces, business centers and other providers of shared offices. Present across the USA, Hong Kong, India, Singapore and Cambodia.
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Jayne Chan – Head of StartmeupHK

Jayne Chan is the Head of StartmeupHK at Invest Hong Kong.  StartmeupHK is InvestHK’s initiative aimed at helping founders of innovative and scalable startups from overseas to set up or expand in Hong Kong. They provide information about the startup ecosystem in HK, connecting people to the startup community, host startup events and help foster a positive environment for startups to thrive.
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Caroline Essame – Social Entrepreneur

Joining us at ATP today is Caroline Essame. Caroline is a social entrepreneur with a clinical and educational background harnessing technology to get global expertise in the special needs and early childhood field out to the bottom of the pyramid. She came to us through Kineret Karin, one half of the team that set up Impactech, the social innovation acclerator based in Singapore. Caroline talks about using technology to empower parents and educators in markets where information and skilled...
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Angela Mackay – Managing Director of The Financial Times APAC

I spoke to Angela Mackay today about developments in digital media including podcasting and the growth of video as a platform.  We discussed experimentation in content creation, the current state of advertising, the power of global distribution and partnerships and subscription models versus ad based business. Angela is the Managing Director and Publisher of Asia Pacific for the Financial Times and also sits on its Global Board.  Hence her views on things financial, business development, a...
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Ollie Halimatussadiah – Why Pioneering Female Entrepreneurs Have to Break The Rules

Aulia “Ollie” Halimatussadiah is the founder of Zetta Media in Jakarta, Indonesia. This is the second time I’ve interviewed Ollie for a podcast; she’s a guest I wanted to come back to because she’s a unique character with her own blend of entrepreneurial guile and rebellious charm (she’s a self-confessed “badass”). That’s not the typical role expected of young women in Indonesia, but as you’ll find out Ollie likes to push the boundaries of what’s acceptable. Zetta is a content platform ...
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Rita Nguyen – Founder and CEO of Jzoo Myanmar

We all have a story…but we all do not have Rita Nguyen’s story.  Rita is Vietnamese by birth and grew up in Canada…her mother and father literally escaped from Vietnam in 1979 after 14 attempts with Rita and her siblings.  After thriving in the corporate world, Rita decided she wanted to go to Vietnam and learn about the tech scene there.  Once there, she realized she loved it so much, she could not leave.  Another trip to Myanmar and another world of opportunities opened up. When Rita arr...
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