Investors at MaGIC GAP Demo Day commend quality of pitches
By Kiran Kaur Sidhu September 27, 2018
- Even before Demo Day, the cohort raised around US$1 million in capital
- General consensus that pitches have greatly improved in quality
THE Malaysian Global Innovation and Creativity Centre (MaGIC)’s Global Accelerator Programme (GAP) concluded on Sept 26 with its Demo Day. Twenty-six participating startups formed the second cohort of the four-month long programme, aimed at growing early-stage or Series A global startups to be investment-ready.
The chief executive officer of MaGIC Ashran Ghazi, expressed his gratitude for the support received from the capital space. “We’ve been very blessed to have angel investors, corporate players and venture capitalists in our circle. I’m proud to say the current cohort has managed to raise RM4 million during the programme itself.”
Nonetheless, Ashran also reminds startup founders to focus on their business fundamentals. “While fundraising and celebrating it as a milestone, don’t overlook the main goal of growing your business, making the bottom line, creating impact and solving the problems you set off to in the first place.”
Some of the startups that pitched their solutions were Camdy, Cantikful, Guesswork, MotionsCloud, PHINIX, Poladrone, Rtist, SmartPeep, The Picha Project, Viking Garage and YoungHappy. While 15 of the participating startups were from Malaysia, the other 11 startups came from different countries spread across Germany, India, Indonesia, Phillipines, Poland, Singapore, Thailand and United States of America.
The GAP Demo Day showcased a good mix of participants from a variety of industries such as e-commerce, social innovation, community development, hardware and Internet of Things (IoT), foodtech, agritech, health, insurtech, artificial intelligence, supply chain, creative and fashion, as well as lifestyle and travel.
Among the Demo Day attendees were Ganesh Kumar Bangah, founder and executive chairman of Commerce.Asia, who remarked, “Although there are fewer participants than the last cohort, the overall quality of the pitches and business ideas have improved.” Last year’s GAP cohort saw a total of 54 participating teams.
A representative from Singapore venture capitalist (VC) firm, Jungle Ventures, shared a similar sentiment, “The presentations were good. There were many interesting ideas and plans, but we are more interested to invest in later-stage companies.”
Long-time investor and managing director of Teak Capital Sdn Bhd, Chok Kwee Bee, also concurred on the good quality of presentations and casually shared her thoughts on some participating teams.
Off the top of her head, Chok said, “I think Viking Garage has a unique business idea. As for Young Happy, they are a passionate team and they are out to solve a very important societal problem.”
The Polish company Viking Garage is an online platform bringing together a community of motorcycle owners for travellers to rent motorcycles from. During her pitch, the co-founder Joanna Kuzniacka who is an avid rider herself, told the audience, “A motorcycle is the best way to explore the wilderness of the world.”
Meanwhile, Young Happy is a personal assistant app for senior citizens with access to services such as friendly phone calls, products, events and activities which include outings and travel opportunities.