Joyful Frog makes the leap to the Philippines
By Digital News Asia February 17, 2015
- JFDI.Asia opens new entrepreneur community management centre in Cebu
- Marks first step in a region-wide expansion planned for 2015
JOYFUL Frog Digital Incubator (JFDI.Asia) has announced the opening of its first international office, in Cebu in the Philippines.
The new office will manage the growing community around JFDI.Asia’s entrepreneur support programmes, fielding enquiries from investors, entrepreneurs and mentors around the world who are interested in the South-East Asian market.
The new facility will also deliver the remote startup induction programme JFDI Discover, JFDI.Asia said in a statement.
The new Cebu facility marks the first step in a region-wide expansion planned for 2015 that will build on JFDI.Asia’s existing international Ambassador programme.
Rather than replicating what it already does in Singapore, or competing with services already on offer from local business support organisations, JFDI.Asia said it plans to add value by connecting talent, capital, and opportunities for entrepreneurs across the region.
“Our belief is that there never will be one central ‘Silicon Valley of Asia’ that prototypes technologies ready to replicate like a cookie cutter across a continent,” said cofounder and chief executive officer Hugh Mason. “Our region is just too diverse for that.”
“But entrepreneurs share a common bond the world over, and we see again and again that community is our secret sauce.
“So the opportunity for JFDI.Asia is to link people who should be working with each other in a network of trust and partnership that gives all its members access to a bigger league in which to play,” he added.
JFDI.Asia was founded in Singapore in January 2010, and claims to be the first business accelerator in South-East Asia.
It has since supported startups from around the world through hundreds of open house events, the flagship JFDI Accelerate programme and ‘try-before-you-buy’ startup education courses such as JFDI Discover and MSC Malaysia Accelerator Lite.
Cebu was chosen for its first overseas facility because the city offers a talented workforce and an exciting local ecosystem, JFDI.Asia said.
“Community organisations like Techtalks PH and the local authorities have done a lot of heavy lifting in Cebu and we couldn’t do what we are doing now without them,” said Mason.
“Over the last five years, JFDI.Asia has worked with a string of great startups from the Philippines that combine both technical competence and unusually strong interpersonal skills. So it seems a natural place to base our community management and outreach operations,” he added.
Anthony Noel, the Philippines-based business development director of Hong Kong-headquartered startup Lenddo, welcomed JFDI.Asia’s arrival in Cebu.
“Having a JFDI.Asia presence in Cebu and the Philippines is good for the local startup community. With its community management team here, it reinforces the fact that there is talent available for startups, not just for the outsourcing industry.
“It also puts us on the global startup map as a prime growth area for businesses to set up and thrive in,” added Noel.
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JFDI.Asia launches 'Ambassador’ programme
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