NEXEA invests US$60k in five early-stage startups
By Digital News Asia November 18, 2019
- 150 applications received from startups to be part of program
- Digi, HELP University, Rhombus Connexion and Spritzer were corporate partners
NEXEA Angels Sdn Bhd (NEXEA), a leading startup investment firm announced that it has recently invested a total of US$60,160 (RM250,000) in five early-stage startups - HAUZ, Lokein, Krenovator, Prepay, and Reemedy. Each of the startups has received US$12,000 (RM50,000) from NEXEA angel investors. These were the top five startups that took part in NEXEA Startup Accelerator and Startup-Corporate Pilot programs that ran for four months and ended last week on 14 Nov.
HAUZ is in the workforce management sector, Lokein is an online vintage marketplace, Krenovator is an IoT learning platform, Prepay is an escrow service for buyer and seller, and Reemedy is a multi-vendor medical supply marketplace.
The announcement about the funding was made during NEXEA Demo Day held at Kuala Lumpur on 14 Nov where the startups were presented to an audience of NEXEA angel investors, corporate partners, and key startup ecosystem players.
Ben Lim, managing partner of NEXEA said, “We’ve been working closely with HAUZ, Lokein, Krenovator, Prepay, and Reemedy for the last few months. As they were at the early stage of their startups, they had plenty of rooms to improve, from perfecting their business model to adopting a growth strategy that would build their traction. So, our mentors were there to help and provide guidance aside from allowing these startups access to funding, and relevant workshops.”
The Startup-Corporate Pilot Program is a new program introduced this year with the aim to connect large corporates with promising startups so they can explore potential collaboration. For the first time, NEXEA has brought in four corporate partners for the program namely Digi Telecommunications Sdn Bhd, HELP University Sdn Bhd, Rhombus Connexion Sdn Bhd, and Spritzer Bhd. This program ran alongside the Accelerator Program for three months.
NEXEA received over 150 applications and out of that, 20 were picked to enroll in a month-long program. Three qualifying rounds were conducted by NEXEA to shortlist only five of the startups to continue in the programs for a further three months. “The selections were made based on a few criteria including how investable they were, founder(s), and the traction they were showing during the initial first month of the program,” Ben explained.
NEXEA declared itself very pleased with the positive outcomes from both the Accelerator and Startup-Corporate Pilot programs. “The startups have managed to scale and grow, proven by increased traction and growth in revenue. Some of these startups did not really have a proper business model before starting the program. Within the last four months, they managed to achieve a growth level that would have taken most companies at least a year or more to achieve a similar stage. The startup growth has truly been ‘accelerated,’” Ben adds.
“We are thrilled that our Startup-Corporate Pilot Program has been an effective platform for corporates to explore potential work for win-win situations. For instance, one of the corporate partners has agreed to award certificates of participation or completion for courses offered on Krenovator’s platform, and another corporate partner has explored the potential use case of HAUZ for their F&B chain store,” Ben states.
On the Demo Day, all five startups were given an opportunity to pitch for further funding from NEXEA group of investors. HAUZ emerged as the winner of Judge’s Favorite award. Meanwhile, Prepay won Crowd Favorite award.
NEXEA will continue to provide support and guidance for the startups beyond Demo Day. The company has started planning for next year’s multi-corporate accelerator program and it is in talks with several corporate entities as partners.