Startup founders, here’s your opportunity to impress the most renowned VCs in the region and connect with them for potential investment opportunities. The Arena Pitch Battle at the Tech in Asia Conference provides a platform for startups to pitch directly to investors and get instant exposure throughout Southeast Asia.
Applications are open to all innovative startups in the early stage with less than US$3 million in external funds raised. Sounds like you? Then grab this opportunity and submit your application for the Arena today!
Tech in Asia and Surge, Sequoia Capital India’s rapid scale-up program, have teamed up to make sure that this year’s Arena is bigger and better than ever. We will have four regional events in Singapore, Vietnam, Indonesia, and the rest of Southeast Asia, with a grand finale at the Tech in Asia Conference. You will be pitching to the region’s most prominent investors and founders and get a chance to win cash prizes, office hours with Sequoia Capital India, and an array of perks for your business.
Everyone who submits a complete application will be eligible for:
(Indonesia, singapore, vietnam, & other sea)
All finalists are eligible to get up to $10,000 USD in AWS credits with AWS Activate
We’ve teamed up with AWS Activate to offer eligible startups affiliated with Startup Arena, free AWS credits, AWS Support credits and more! These exclusive benefits help you quickly get started on AWS and grow your business.
For more information including the eligibility criteria, please review the AWS Activate Terms & Conditions.
Up for a pitching challenge? We’re scouting for the best innovative startups in the region (Singapore, Vietnam, Indonesia, and other Southeast Asian countries) for our upcoming event, Tech in Asia Conference 2020 Virtual. Apply to be part of the Arena Pitch Battle here before September 18, 2020, at 11:59 PM GMT+7.
💡 The selected startups will be given time and space to practice their presentations – with our help, of course – because a good demo is a must. Our Arena training will be held virtually.
All semifinalists will pitch live on a virtual stage to an audience and a panel of judges that includes a prominent investor and founder in the region. A Q and A portion will be held after each presentation. To succeed, semifinalists have to impress the judges with their demonstration of ideas, insights and market knowledge.
📅 The semifinals will take place on the following dates:
The top six startups will be picked as finalists.
💡 Tech in Asia will help ensure that all finalists will be ready to impress at the final pitch battle.
OCTOBER 21 -22 , 2020
It’s the big day! All finalists will pitch live on the third and fourth day of Tech in Asia Conference 2020 Virtual, which will be held from October 21 to 22, 2020. The champion of the Arena will get to build their legacy and a cash prize.
Co-founder & Group CEO, Funding Societies | Modalku
Founder & CEO, Trusting Social
Thailand Coverage, Openspace Ventures
Managing Partner, East Ventures
Who can apply for the Arena?
All innovative tech startups based in Southeast Asia that are in the growth stage and have raised less than US$3 million in external funds are eligible to apply.
I was once an Arena finalist. Can I participate again this year?
We highly appreciate your interest. However, we want to maximize the limited slots by giving a chance to another startup.
What language must I use for the pitch?
Your pitch must be in English.
How much should I pay to participate in the Arena?
Participation in the Arena is totally free of charge.
When can I submit?
Now! Or as soon as possible. We’ll close submissions on September 18, 2020, at 11:59 PM GMT+7, and we’ll be reviewing entries on a rolling basis.
Surge is a rapid scale-up program for startups in India and Southeast Asia. It combines US$1 million to US$2 million of seed capital with company-building workshops, a global curriculum, and support from a community of exceptional mentors and founders. The program’s goal is to supercharge early-stage startups and give founders an unfair advantage, right out of the gate.
For more information on Surge, visit www.surgeahead.com.
Copyright © 2020 Tech in Asia. All rights reserved.
Principal, Sequoia Capital India
Pieter joined Sequoia in 2014 as one of the first members of the firm’s Southeast Asia investment team. He currently serves on the Board of Fave, Nugit, Funding Societies, 90 Seconds, HealthEngine, and Insider. Recently, he has been focused on Seed investments and is a core member of the Surge team, working closely with companies like Zenyum, Qoala and others.
Pieter previously ran his own startup, worked at an incubator, and held various leadership roles at tech companies such as Cisco and Amazon. Prior to Sequoia, he worked at Amazon Web Services, where he was responsible for Amazon’s business with VC’s, Accelerators, and the broader startup ecosystem across Asia.
Having lived and worked in Amsterdam, Madrid, and Tokyo, Pieter currently resides in Singapore with his wife and two daughters. He holds an MBA from University of Chicago Booth School of Business, where he specialized in Entrepreneurship and Venture Capital.
Managing Director Surge & Sequoia Capital India LLP
As part of the leadership team at Sequoia Capital, Rajan is focusing on developing Surge into the world’s top scale-up program for startups by acting as an investment advisor and mentor to the programme’s founders.
Surge aims to engineer rapid early progress for startups, by enabling disproportionate access to capital, talent, network and decades of company-building knowledge. Rajan’s deep understanding of technology, operating expertise and a track record of growing tech businesses across the region will help Surge’s founders scale and build the businesses of tomorrow.
Prior to Sequoia, as Head of Google India and Southeast Asia, Rajan played a key role in expanding the regions internet ecosystem while accelerating Google’s innovation and growth units. He is also a prolific angel investor who has backed a large number of successful startups at very early stages. Rajan also led Microsoft and Dell in India and was earlier a Partner at McKinsey & Company in Chicago.
GENERAL PARTNER, 500 STARTUPS VIETNAM
Binh Tran is the General Partner of 500 Startups Vietnam, the most active VC investor in Vietnam. Binh has completed over 40 investments in his career, across sectors such as edtech, fintech, ecommerce, AI, and logistics. Prior to 500 Startups, Binh co-founded Klout in 2008, a social analytics company powered by big data and AI and backed by top tier Silicon Valley VCs that was acquired in 2014. Binh resides in HCMC.
CO-FOUNDER & CEO, KOPI KENANGAN
He graduated Magna Cum Laude in finance and accounting from Northeastern University. After a brief stint in Ernst & Young Tax, he became a serial entrepreneur in a range of different businesses. In 2015, he started Lewis & Carroll tea, one of the largest premium tea house chains in Indonesia where he quickly realized the importance of online delivery, affordability, and technology in F&B business. The experience triggered him to start Kopi Kenangan, a tech enabled grab & go premium affordable coffee chain, which became one of the largest coffee chains in Indonesia in just 2 years.
Joel Neoh is one of Southeast Asia’s most recognised young entrepreneurs. Joel is currently the Founder of Fave, a leading mobile payments & loyalty platform with strong presence in Malaysia, Singapore and Indonesia. Fave is supported by some of the most reputable investors in the region including Sequoia Capital, SIG and Grab. Joel has received the Ernst & Young Emerging Entrepreneur of the Year Award, and was named Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum. Malaysian Tatler also awarded Joel Entrepreneur Par Excellence in 2018.
As a Kuala Lumpur native, Joel was one of the initial founders of the Groupon businesses in Asia Pacific, and headed up the region for 4 years. He played an instrumental role in establishing the high-growth business model that propelled Groupon into a multi billion dollar business, with thousands of employees spanning across 12 countries.
Joel has also co-founded several successful companies including social news platform Says.com, and invested in over 20 technology startups across Asia. In 2013, Says.com merged with Catcha Media and the public-listed company was rebranded as REV Asia. REV Asia was acquired by Media Prima in 2017 for over RM100 million.
He completed his studies in Monash University and Harvard Business School and has lived in a number of Asia Pacific cities, including Tokyo, Seoul, Taipei, Sydney and Singapore. In 2016, he was awarded the Distinguished Alumni Award from Monash University, and has been on the advisory board of the Monash School of Business and AIESEC, the world’s largest student organization.
Jussi is the Co-Founder and Managing Partner for Asia at Antler (www.antler.co), focusing on running Antler’s overall strategy and operations in the region. He is very passionate about helping founders build their businesses from scratch and has a hands-on approach to coach them through the startup process. He has been an integral part of advising founders from our Singapore cohorts. Antler has over 170 companies under our portfolio globally.
Jussi has over a decade of experience in areas of investment and strategy across different industries, including engineering and IoT. Before Antler, he was the Vice President at Nokia’s headquarters in Helsinki, running Product, Strategy, Sales and Commercial functions. He has also had his experiences built across working with promising international companies such as McKinsey, Deloitte and Morgan Stanley.
Jussi was educated in the Helsinki School of Economics and London School of Economics.
Co-founder & Group CEO, Funding Societies | Modalku
Kelvin Teo is the co-founder of Funding Societies | Modalku. Selected as Top 200 FinTech Influencers in Asia and appointed Co-Chairperson for the Marketplace Lending Committee of Singapore FinTech Association, Kelvin has spoken at major conferences such as LendIt Shanghai, Boao Hainan and Money20/20. He has also been featured on Bloomberg, BBC and Business Times. Prior to this, Kelvin served as a consulting professional at KKR, McKinsey and Accenture. Kelvin graduated from Harvard Business School and National University of Singapore, and is a certified Chartered Accountant.
Nichapat Ark is Thailand Coverage for Openspace Ventures, a Singapore-based VC fund focusing in Southeast Asia with more than US$300mil under management. Additionally, she is also a screening committee for Bangkok Venture Club, an angel investor network in Thailand, as well as Thailand Seedstars World Ambassador. She has received the Prime Minister Award as Thailand Startup Ecosystem Evangelist in 2019.
Nichapat has more than 20 years of experience in financial markets. Her most recent position before joining Openspace Ventures was Executive Committee and Managing Director, Financial Markets for Standard Chartered Bank Thailand where she took part in driving the bank’s strategic planning and execution functions. During her 10 years with Standard Chartered Bank, she spent 2 years in China as Managing Director of Financial Markets Sales based in Shanghai. Nichapat obtained her Master of Business Administration degree, majoring in Finance from Sasin Graduate School of Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok, Thailand, and spent a term on exchange at the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University. She received a Bachelor of Business Administration at Assumption University, Thailand.
As co-founder and director, Rameez is the lead visionary and responsible for overall business and operations in Singapore. He also manages external relationships with key industry partners, including IMDA and M1.
To Rameez, the launch of Circles.Life is an exciting opportunity to digitally transform the telecom industry in Singapore with home built innovation and technology, but also to take this transformation globally to other regions where data savvy customers exist.
Rameez co-founded and managed TechCube8, a technology, media and telecoms (TMT) focused venture fund that received co-investment from the National Research Foundation of Singapore (NRF). Before TechCube8, Rameez was in portfolio management and investments at Temasek Holdings. He also previously worked in corporate finance as an M&A consultant with the Boston Consulting Group (BCG).
Some of his achievements include supporting investments made by Temasek during the global financial crisis in 2009. Rameez also contributed towards setting up the regulatory framework for the corporatisation of Changi Airport and providing funding and advice for budding entrepreneurs during the formative stages of the Block 71 start-up ecosystem in Singapore.
Rameez has an MBA from Harvard Business School and is a graduate of the National University of Singapore (NUS), where he was Defence Science & Technology Agency (DSTA) Gold Medallist.
Willson Cuaca is the Managing Partner of East Ventures, Southeast Asian early-stage investment fund and the VC pioneer in Indonesia. The firm starts investing in 2009 when no one believed in the potential of Indonesia’s consumer Internet.
East Ventures has funded hundreds of early-stage companies in Southeast Asia since their early days. Most of the companies have received subsequent funding round and riding on top of Indonesia middle-class consumer growth. The firm has also exited investments through M&A to local and international companies. This year, East Ventures crowned as the most consistent top performing VC fund globally and is the most active investor in SEA and Indonesia.