DNA on BFM: What can GrabTaxi do with 8 trillion rupiah?

  • Fusionex gets ready to enter its 8th market, the Philippines
  • Key takeaways from 1337 Ventures-run Alpha Startups pitch night

DNA on BFM: What can GrabTaxi do with 8 trillion rupiah?I HAD a great line ready to take a potshot at BFM presenter Freda Liu this week on the radio station’s Tech Talk segment. Unfortunately she was on leave today, but I still had a great conversation (okay, it was mostly me talking) with producer Jeff Sandhu.
 
We could not but start with the incredible, US$350-million (RM2.46-billion) record-breaking round that Malaysian-launched and -owned GrabTaxi has announced. If you add this to the US$250 million it raised in November 2014 and convert it to Indonesian currency, you get a cool 8.3 trillion rupiah!
 
I shared my thoughts on the business model, possible acquisitions, and the real market size that GrabTaxi can address in South-East Asia – which, by the way, is nowhere near the much-ballyhooed 600 million (the total population) that constantly gets thrown up.
 
We then spoke about Ivan Teh, cofounder of Fusionex International which is listed on London’s Alternative Investment Market (AIM), and his plans to launch in the Philippines within the next two months, and his ambitious target of increasing his total customers by 10 times over the next three years.
 
While a much smaller market than Malaysia, from an ICT spend perspective, the retail sector is booming there, with 40 malls expected to be built between 2014 and 2015. Teh feels that this aspect, together with his new suite of big data analytics tools, will give him a strong leverage to enter the market.
 
There was also a strong element of data and analytics to a pre-launch briefing I attended on Aug 19, by Telekom Malaysia Bhd (TM) on the upcoming launch of new packages for its fibre-based broadband service, UniFi.
 
What struck me here was also TM’s strong customer focus in rolling out the services. Having signed an NDA (non-disclosure agreement) with TM as it does want the story out until launch, my thoughts here are an exclusive to listeners.
 
Having attended the final pitch session for the latest Alpha Startups pre-accelerator pitch run by 1337 Ventures, I shared some of my key takeaways from that night, where I just had to ask one of the participants what substance he was inhaling when he came up with his growth projections!

I actually did not write an article about on this as I have been focusing my full attention this week on DNA’s inaugural tech conference, What’s Next: The Business Impact of Disruptive Technology, where we have AirAsia founder Tony Fernandes scheduled as our keynote speaker.
 
With BFM as our media partner for the conference, I was able to speak about the focus of the conference and why we picked that angle. Do listen in on that and register for What’s Next as well if you see value in it!
 
Previous Instalments:
 
DNA on BFM: Does owning technology matter?

The UEM tender, talents and … virgins
 
BFM and DNA get more social with Tech Talk

 
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