SINGAPORE-BASED Accelerating Asia (AA) is finalising the first close of its pre-seed venture capital (VC) fund in July, where up to US$5 million raised will be invested in over 40 high-growth startups in Asia, the independent startup accelerator announced on Wednesday.
Investors in this fund comprise of angels, family offices and individual investors. Further details have not been released.
The first group of startups participating in the accelerator programme comprises mature startups specialising in Big Data, e-commerce, human resources, logistics, software-as-a-service, transportation and remittances. Their founders are from Asia, including Bangladesh, Malaysia, Indonesia, Pakistan, Singapore, the Philippines and Vietnam.
Participating startups will receive S$100,000 in funding, an office space in Downtown Singapore, and other perks from Amazon Web Services, Hubspot and Tribe Theory. The pre-seed fund supports the investment in the form of a SAFE (simple agreement for future equity) note.
The programme has two phases - Three months of weekly activities followed by a one-month final period which includes a Startup Mastery Program in San Francisco and Silicon Valley. Subsequently there is a Demo Day where founders pitch their startups to investors, multinationals and government partners, among others.
The first Demo Day of the programme will be on Oct 3 this year, and applications for the next round of firms open in early October.
Accelerating Asia is supported by Enterprise Singapore.
"We are entrepreneurs ourselves and believe our experience and an extensive network of best-in-class mentors, investors and partners put us in a unique position to understand the pain points of our startups and play a part in enabling their success," said Craig Dixon, co-founder, entrepreneur in residence and program director at Accelerating Asia.
The 10 participating startups are:
Philippine firm BeamandGo that assists migrant workers with remittance;
Indonesia's Datanest, which employs artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning algorithms to help improve a company’s performance;
Pakistan's DeafTawk, which provides different online services to assist the hearing-impaired;
Vietnamese medical startup, Medlink, which showcases a platform that connects consumers, pharmacies and pharmaceutical companies to improve healthcare accessibility;
Malaysia's Web2Ship, which helps online sellers to search, compare and book different courier services by identifying the best shipping services.
Bangladesh's Loop focuses on creating a communication, payment, and data infrastructure for shippers and carriers to address supply chain transportation problems; whereas Zantrik is an automotive service and resource platform that ensures seamless maintenance experience for vehicles, by connecting service providers and applying quality assurance standards;
Singapore's Klaud9 matches photographers and brands to create photos for clients' social media and marketing campaign; while Panalyt aims to provide people analytics through user-friendly dashboards and AI-driven insights; and TalentTribe is a recruitment platform that connects job-seekers with suitable employers.