It's been a busy first month for our ten startups in cohort 3 and we're excited about the traction they're starting to generate.
Here's a quick update on their recent progress.
3DNA is continuing their push to sell their interactive digital eyewear kiosks and have recently sold units in Hong Kong, China, and India.
On Thursday 10th May, we held a launch event to introduce the ten new startups in cohort 3. The event was held at naked Hub (Bonham Circus, 40-44 Bonham Strand, Sheung Wan, Hong Kong).
Programme Director, Erika Cheung, also provided an update on the traction from cohort’s 1 and 2. The four startups in cohort 1 have raised US$1.2M while the seven startups in cohort 2 have raised a collective US$2.7M to date, with several of the startups still in the fundraising process.
Each startup in Betatron will receives US$30,000 investment and will be guided through an intensive four-month period to refine their business model and fast-track them, grow, scale and raise their first institutional funding round. The startups are located at the Betatron Lab at naked Hub (Bonham Circus, 40-44 Bonham Strand, Sheung Wan, Hong Kong) and have been provided free office space for the duration of the four month programme.
It's the most common question I get asked when I meet people in the startup community.
But is this a relevant question to ask?
Is this the right metric we should be tracking track?
Does this metric give an accurate representation of Betatron's progress?
Personally, I don't think so...
A better question might be, "how many promising startups have applied?".
It's imperative to focus on QUALITY over QUANTITY when you're thinking about tracking your startup's metrics.
How to find the right metric to track?
I'm a firm believer in giving everyone in your startup one specific metric to focus on.
If you assign a team member the wrong metric, it can dramatically affect your chance of success, often, without you even realising it.
Let's take Betatron as an example...
If my primary metric was the total number of applications we receive, then I would naturally have to focus on increasing the quantity regardless of the quality.
For example, if social media ads generate more applications, BUT higher quality applications come through networking events or press articles, then social media ads is what I'd have to focus on.
As some of you may know, we had some technical issues with our application form during the last week.
This has meant we've had to accept a number of applications which were submitted after we officially closed the deadline on Thursday.
To make this fair to everyone, we've decided to extend the application deadline for cohort 3 until Thursday 15th March.
Any applications we receive after this new cut-off date will not be accepted.
Thank you to Jumpstart Magazine for featuring Betatron!
Fundraising Status of Cohort 2 Startups
Our cohort 2 startups have been in fundraising mode for the last couple of weeks. Here's a snapshot of their status.
Notes: Finalizing terms & round size with investors
Notes: Negotiations in progress with several investors including a portion already closed
Notes: Investors lined up - aiming to close in May
Notes: Equity and token sale in progress - large portion already committed, finalizing terms & exact round size
Let me know if you want to learn more!
It’s exciting to see the growth which Pakpobox is continuing to generate after they graduated from our four-month program last year.
Congratulations to their team as they’ve just closed their pre-Series A funding round of US$1.2M from Infinity Venture Partners, SQ Capital, and one of Betatron's founding partners, The Aria Group.
Pakpobox is creating a smart locker network across Asia which allows postal operators and vendors to independently plug into their software and utilize their infrastructure.
The funding will primarily be used to expand their smart locker network in Hong Kong and Asia, and to incorporate additional lifestyle services into their smart lockers to provide unique value-added user experiences to consumers.
Apart from their impressive technology, which has been globally recognized, their business fundamentals are incredibly solid and are starting to produce significant traction, too.
Their B2C network allows consumers to deliver their online e-commerce purchases to smart lockers that can be collected 24/7, providing a much more convenient and cost-saving means as compared with home delivery. Pakpobox currently has around 3,500 compartment doors installed all over Hong Kong, mainly in shopping malls and residential estates, handling over 20,000 parcels per month.
Apart from parcel delivery, Pakpobox also integrated and provides various lifestyle services to its smart locker networks such as laundry services and parcel returns. A new lifestyle service brand and mobile app called ALFRED is planned to be launched in the first half of 2018.
Here’s a quick snapshot of Pakpobox's statistics since they graduated from Betatron in June 2017:
Wow! What an amazing Demo Day for our seven startups in cohort 2.
Last week, on Thursday 25th January, our startups presented their businesses to a private, invitation-only audience of investors, strategic partners, press, and media.
It was a tremendous turnout - not only in quantity, but quality, too. We were delighted to see most of the key players in Hong Kong's startup and investment ecosystem in attendance cumulating in 360+ event registrations.
As we announced last week, we've just opened up applications for cohort 3.
We'll be closing applications once we find our selected startups or on 1st March 2018.
Therefore, the earlier you apply, the higher your chances of being accepted.
We're in the process of reviewing the applications we've received so far and we'll be inviting the first batch of startups for interviews next week.
To visit the application page, please click here.
If you have any questions, please let me know.
Our New 'Entrepreneur In Residence'
Demo Day is fast approaching for our startups.
We've just confirmed the date and venue, and it promises to be an impressive event, even bigger and better than last time.
Personal invites to our investor network will be sent out next week.
If you're an investor and would like to attend, please let me know.
The focus of the last week was preparing our startups to fundraise.
We started by holding a workshop, led by our director, Nio Liyanage, to start the process of optimizing each startup's fundraising strategy.
How much funding should you raise?
Why are you raising it?
What will the funding be used for?
These are all important questions to carefully consider before approaching any investors.
Representing the Hong Kong ecosystem in Macau