Asian Leaders Summit 2017

What, When and Why You Should Know

The 4th Asian Leaders Summit (ALS) an annual event co-hosted by venture capitalists — Incubate Fund in Japan and KK Fund in Singapore. This 2-day event joined by CEOs of leading tech startups in Asia as well as VCs and Corporate VCs in the region gathered to listen, learn, update and networking about trends, technology, and innovation that will be happening in the Asia.

I’m very fortunate to speak at the event for the first time sharing about “SEA internet as market and ongoing opportunities” and have a chance to listen to many startups giants and rising stars.

There are 15 sessions, yes, 15 in a day!!! And all speakers get only 10 minutes to share their stories. Here are some of the highlights

Session 1 — Global Macro Trends by Takeshi Ebihara from Rebright partners

If you looked at Pre-IPO tech company 9 years ago all of them made their fortune from the internet BUT look, fast forward to present, they are not purely internet-based tech companies anymore. If you would like to build or invest in one successful startups chances are that you need to look for opportunities both in and outside of internet-based companies.

Session 2 — The China story by Akio Tanaka from Infinity Venture Partners

He proposed what he called “Chinatron” idea which analogous to Megatron from the movie Transformer. He said that now in China, there are 3 Chinatrons — Alibaba, Baidu, and Tencent. These 3 giants are competing and building their mega empires. In fact, not only them, there are companies like Chetah mobile, 360, etc. That are expanding globally and may be you didn’t notice them. They are already on your phone and they know what you are doing by giving you a free mobile phone’s performance optimizer or photo editing app in return, they have full access to your phone.

Tanaka-san ended his talk “China is not all that bad, you just need to find Bumblebee, and you will be safe. I’ve already found one!”

Session 3 — India Macro Trends by Teruhide Sato from BEENEXT

Indian has gone mobile! Only for Paytm — a mobile wallet app has 200 million users and 7 million transactions per day!!!

The reason behind this was the launch of Aadhaar — a 12-digit unique identification number issued by the government of India. Aadhaar is the world’s largest biometric ID system, with over 1.123 billion enrolled members as of Feb 2017.

BCG reported that India is now moving forward to less cash society from 22% non-cash aka e-money in 2015 to 59% in 2025.

Session 4 — IoT showcase from Asia

Takuma Iwasa, CEO, Cerevo Inc (Japan)
Donald Merino, EVP Business Development, Jarvish (Taiwan)
Minori Takechi, Founder and CEO, Gatebox (Japan)

In short, Cerevo is a hardware company that focusing on Global Niche which means he’s gonna make 100 products sold to 100 customers each 100 countries (100 x 100 x 100) what a cool concept huh?

Jarvish is a smart helmet company that is cheaper. If you are a biker, you will want one for yourself!

Gatebox, it was the most entertaining presentation, and you know what, his product video now has 1.4 million views on Youtube at the time of writing. It’s a virtual girlfriend. Very Japanese right?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nkcKaNqfykg

Session 5 — Disruptive Fintech startups showcase

Bala Parthasarathy, Co-Founder and CEO, MoneyTap (India)

MoneyTap is India’s first app-based credit line to offer a personal credit line by partner up with the banks. In simple words, they are money lenders with flexible interest rates offering services in Delhi NCR, Mumbai, Bangalore, Hyderabad, and Chennai. What I like about this startup apart from the business model and large market size, he delivered his pitch in a very interactive way and his presentation deck looks great as he animated the whole process to let us see the capability of the app with in a few seconds. Awesome!

Bruce Chen, Founder and CEO, Insto

Insto is the world’s first person-to-person payment platform in which you can do installment & scheduled payments. Payment plan created from either buyer or payer. Interesting right?

Yuzo Kano, Co-Founder and CEO, BitFlyer (Japan)

BitFlyer is #1 Bitcoin Trading Platform in Japan. One interesting fact is that there’s gonna be a big change in bitcoin regulation in Japan in April 2017. The first national law for virtual currency will be effective and it’s aiming for more consumer protection and good things are retail shops and e-commerce shops will introduce Bitcoin payment and financial institutions will come into Bitcoin exchange business legally. Japan will be very advance for cryptocurrency because of this law.

Another boost for Bitcoin in Japan is after July 2017, Japanese Consumption Tax will be exempted. From 8% to 0%, OMG! let’s wait and see…

Osamu Kaneda, Founder and CEO, Yo-ren Limited (China)

Yo-Ren is CRM platform for retails especially convenience stores (CVS) which has a very high growth in China with the sales growth increased 15.2% in 2015. Look at the chart above and you will see WeChat is really really strong in China.

In summary, this is only in the morning session and information is overloaded :) What I can see so far is that the world is moving at the faster speed and the information you have today will be outdated by tomorrow. It’s the speed to execute idea to real products/services or it will be just a great idea.

Even though those companies above called themselves “Startups” but I don’t think they are at all. They are real professionals with tons of experiences in the relevant fields and their products/services can change the world or at least change many lives in their home countries.

Continue in the next article…