Thailand’s Eko raises US$1mil from 500 Startups, others
By Digital News Asia April 9, 2014
- Develops mobile-oriented workplace communications solutions for large enterprises
- App has been adopted by companies representing a total of US$3.3bil in revenue
EKO Communications announced it has completed a US$1 million seed financing round with Silicon Valley-based global venture capital firm 500 Startups and several angel investors.
The angel investors include Suphachai Chearavanont, president and chief executive officer of Thai telecoms conglomerate True Corporation and Sammy Lee, chairman of China-based health products company Infinitus.
The company did not say what the money from the seed round would be channelled into.
Eko, based in Bangkok and New York, develops mobile-oriented workplace communications solutions for large enterprises that it said allow companies to streamline communications, productivity, and workflow, the company said in a statement.
Since its limited launch last September, its Eko solution has been officially deployed and adopted by companies representing a total of US$3.3 billion in revenue.
Eko also claims to have confirmed deployment plans with companies representing over US$20 billion in total revenue.
“Modern enterprises are already mobile savvy, using consumer apps like WhatsApp or WeChat to communicate with colleagues,” said Khailee Ng (pic), venture partner at 500 Startups.
“However, these apps are not designed to meet enterprise needs … Eko is," he added.
Khailee also told Digital News Asia (DNA) that this is the 25th investment 500 Startups has made in South-East Asia.
Eko said its solution caters to the specific needs of all levels of employees, whether they are management, office, or front-line staff.
In its statement, the company said the idea for the app was born in a high school dorm room before going on to the TigerLabs Accelerator in Princeton, New Jersey where it became a finished product, being continually improved and updated since then.
The company expanded from New York to Bangkok to cater to enterprise demand from Asia, it added.
Its founder and chief executive officer Korawad Chearavanont, merely 19 years old, is now a student at Columbia University but has had experience working in several organisations including True Corporation, IBM, and the Shanghai World Exposition.
“People have been touting mobile as ‘the future’ for a while now. It's already here. It's here to stay. What will mobile do to transform workplaces? This is our mission. And this is a good start.” Korawad said.
Cofounder and chief technology officer David Zhang has worked with NASA (the US National Aeronautics and Space Administration) on the Curiosity Rover project, as well as a Darpa (Defence Advanced Research Projects Agency) contractor, Eko said.
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