In this week’s Asia Tech Podcast, Graham and Michael discuss why Asia matters. They talk about how attitudes are shifting from a “lack of visibility” in Asia, to pioneering VCs on the West Coast turning to the Pacific for their latest deal flow. Asia tech investment stood at $19.3 billion as of mid 2017, compared to Silicon Valley $16.5 billion. Sure, SV is a fraction of Asia’s population and land mass, but times are changing. The conversation covers the latest investment data on Asia, key headline figures for demographics and the role of the “Unicorn Creators” (of which Tencent has already invested in 19 Unicorns alone).
Simon Dixon – CEO & Co-Founder of BnkToTheFuture.com, FinTech Angel Investor, Author ‘Bank To The Future’
We started our conversation with Simon Dixon back in 2006, when Simon was first introduced to the concepts of Bitcoin. After a few years in the world of investment banking and brokerage, he set out to write a book on the future of money and banking. He was introduced to the concepts of Bitcoin through the writings of Jonathan James Harrison and was immediately convinced that this was the future of money and the store of value. Simon’s knowledge of finance, economics and all things bitcoin come out in this conversation. We had a fascinating look at the ownership of your own money and, among other things how depositing your money in a bank cedes this ownership and allows banks to legally take ownership of its deposits and then do what they will with it. The implications of this are far reaching with one of the consequences being the boom and bust cycles we see in the global economy.
Is Singapore the best startup city in Asia? According to our ATP Vote Singapore is, followed closley by Hong Kong then Kuala Lumpur and Shanghai. In this week’s ATP Graham and Michael discuss what makes Singapore a world leader in tech ecosystems as well as plans to take the radio show to Singapore end of November, early December. Listen in to our latest analysis of the Asian tech ecosystem and tour schedule.
Rina Neoh has more than 20 years of experience in both the corporate and entrepreneurial world. With a solid foundation in BS Computer Science and a keen business sense acquired through an overseas MBA, Rina has delivered multi-million dollar returns from small business enterprises, which she has incubated, coached, invested in or promoted. Rina’s years of investing experience has taught her many things, not the least of which is that the ability to work with someone is paramount. Relationships matter and investing for her and her team is about building a long term working relationship with Founders.
Paul Meyers is currently the Head of the Southeast Asian business for muru-D, which is impressive in and of itself. But there is so much more to his story. After moving out to San Francisco post college and building his eponymous media and production company, Paul travelled to Asia in 1995 and has remained ever since. His experience in building and running media properties included animation, live streaming television, music and listing a company on Nasdaq. Paul has worked with or built some of the most well known brands and media properties in the the world. His involvement as a business founder, builder, mentor and advisor is substantial and makes him insanely qualified to lead one of the most forward thinking accelerators in Southeast Asia.
Tony Verb wanted to be the mayor…inspired by Sim City 2000, he was fascinated by urbanization, city building and innovation. He now gets to put all of his interests together as the co-Founder of GreaterBay Ventures & Advisors. Building upon years of experience and research, Tony rightfully believes there is a massive opportunity as the re-branded Pearl River Delta integrates the economies of 9 cities in Guangdong Province, Hong Kong and Macau…Tony believes that cities should not be built with an individualistic view, but should focus on the overall ecosystem. Tony takes a special interest in the blockchain, autonomous electric vehicles and smart urbanization.
Gang Lu has a MSc and PhD in Wireless Communications and he is a true passionate believer in technology and the internet. Almost 10 years ago, he started blogging about technology in China and Asia as a hobby and was spending so much time and effort doing so, that he decided to turn his passion into a business. While still based in the U.K., he began building Mobinode in earnest and turned it into the business we know as technode.com today.
Technode is the leading technology and internet focused blog in China and is published in both Mandarin and English. Gang’s vision is to continue to provide a bridge between China’s startups, angel investors, venture capitalists and the entire entrepreneurial community to the rest of the world. During this conversation Gang shared his experiences, ups and downs and entrepreneurial journey with us. A fascinating look inside the world of media, partnerships and blogging in China.
Alvin Wang Graylin is the China Regional President of Vive (VIVE.com) at HTC, leading all aspects of the Vive/VR business in the region. He is also currently Vice-Chairman of the 300-member company Industry of Virtual Reality Alliance (IVRA.com), President of the $18B Virtual Reality Venture Capital Alliance (VRVCA.com) and oversees the Vive X VR accelerator (VIVEX.co) in Asia. Alvin spoke to ATP at length about how Virtual Reality will literally impact every aspect of our lives…while most people think of gaming and entertainment when considering VR, Alvin was passionate about how Virtual Reality tools could radically change the way we educate and get educated. Listen very carefully as Alvin explains how immersive VR experiences, tested in real classrooms in China, can completely recalibrate a student ‘s ability to learn even the most difficult subjects.
This week we’re all about coworking spaces. With the recent $4.4 billion investment by Softbank into WeWork and the merger of JustCo & Naked Hub, cowowrking in Asia is booming in 2017. So, where are the best spaces in Asia and why is coworking so popular? Graham and Michael discuss coworking in Asia as well as the latest ATP Award for Best Coworking Space Asia 2017.
Tak Lo is the founder of Zeroth.ai – the Artificial Intelligence accelerator based in Hong Kong.
In this interview we covered the “why” questions – why do we need AI-specific accelerator programs for startups? why did Tak get into this space in the first space? why is Tak the right person to mentor and lead a new generation of Artificial Intelligence startup founders in Asia?