On 10th December 2019, at the Renaissance Riverside Hotel in Ho Chi Minh City, VIISA announced the completion of the sixth batch of its 4-month acceleration program with its “Investment Day”. The invitation-only event welcomed more than 100 active investors, corporations and startup community builders.
At the beginning of the event, Mr. Hieu Vo, Board Member and CFO at VIISA, said:
“Batch 6 is special because it marks the third anniversary of VIISA as a company. We started with high expectations in terms of program quality improvement as well as creating more value added for founders. That means the program is getting tougher and more demanding for participants and operators too. Apart from very intuitive selection criteria that all applying startups have to go through, the program has introduced a new development measurement method which helps us to capture the progress of startups that are accepted into VIISA. The KPI setting sessions at beginning of Batch 6 laid the foundations of more harmonised rating metrics on both business performance as well as personal transformation of founders. I think this process will bring out the best in each person for the particular business they have founded and committed to. Of course, we could never have achieved this progress without the amazing team at VIISA as well as the Entrepreneurs-in-Residence (EIRs) team, mentors, and our respected partners. I am proud of how all the startup teams have overcome the challenges leading up to today.”
Mr. Hieu Vo - Board Member cum CFO of VIISA
During the first part of the Investment Day, VIISA showcased their portfolio and alumni startups via a keynote speech from management representative of Base.vn, a portfolio investee of VIISA and the two fund-raising pitches from alumni startups. A practical yet inspiring presentation on technology application on business management was shared with various stories from Base.vn themselves.
Moreover, CEO Phong Pham from CyHome, a Batch 2 alumnus, brought excitement to the audience again with his great passion for new progress in business development since graduating from VIISA. Not only is their Hanoi market booming with several leading property development corporate contracts, but also their key partnership with VNG for a core product development.
Last but not least, Khoa Do, CEO of Ella Study, also a Batch 2 alumnus, flew all the way from Hanoi for just a day to share with VIISA’s guests their impressive movement and traction. Ella has pivoted to be an educational organization, providing orientation, overseas study and career mentorship services to students. All these services are provided through an omni learning experience (online & offline) by connecting with insightful peer-group alumni and mentors.
Over the last 18 months, Ella has assisted 180+ students to study abroad - nearly 50% of whom got offer letters from the top 4% of universities worldwide. Ella also supported more than 1,500 students in career mentorship & training, with another brand named Markus School. Another service named Ella Uni has supported 28+ universities to recruit more than 400 students in just 20 months.
3 Alumni Startups of VIISA:
Base.vn - Ella Study - CyHome
After the session from portfolio and alumni startups, the four graduating startups from VIISA took the stage. Founders of these four companies have reaped the benefits of 10 management and business development training sessions, more than 12 experts and over 250 working hours with VIISA in 12 weeks. They all have received seed funding from VIISA in cash and enjoyed VIISA partners’ world class services such as Amazon Web Services, Google Cloud, Payoo, MoonLab Co-working space, etc. The promising startups will be able to get follow-on funding of up to $200,000 from VIISA when they secure a new round of funding from other investors.
The below four startups have shown their great commitment and endurance in this tough yet meaningful 4-month journey.
- BoxShop: BoxShop is building an omni fashion retail platform that helps to showcase local design to both online and offline consumers as well as support the local fashion industry to the next stage. On the B2B front, its retail management system provides a one-stop solution that helps designers to manage their business anywhere, anytime. On the B2C front, the discovery engine and customer data platform aim to curate a completely fresh shopping experience by providing matched styles, intelligent recommendations and eventually pick & try at physical stores. In December 2019, they will launch their mobile application with three main features: loyalty, lookbook & intelligent recommendations. The website version will be launched in early 2020.
- BeeKrowd: A trusted equity funding platform that helps startups fundraise from a community of investors through a co-investing mechanism. BeeKrowd offers investors unprecedented access to investment opportunities in early-stage companies. BeeKrowd has launched marketing information of the first investment opportunity on its platform.
- TripHunter: An automated trip planner solution for independent travelers to build their personalized itinerary in minutes and to book all services in one place. Travelers can just select their desired destination, preferred travel time and personal interests; then the trip planning engine will generate an optimal personalized plan for the whole trip. TripHunter allows travelers to manage their entire trip including itinerary, transportation, accommodation and activity at their fingertips. Positioned as the must-have application providing a massive database of travel information, TripHunter helps travelers experience a new care-free escapade in Vietnam for now, and soon throughout the whole world.
- EcomEasy: EcomEasy Asia (ECE) is a dynamic ecommerce solution provider for consumer brands in Vietnam. ECE's integrated capabilities encompass all aspects of the e-commerce value chain from SKU selection, sales and inventory management to on-site operations, logistics and fulfilment. ECE has generated billions of VND in sales and hundred thousands of orders on all 10 ecommerce platforms operating in Vietnam for a dozen of brands. ECE’s services include a first-in-class business intelligence dashboard which enables brands to monitor their performance holistically in an e-commerce environment. ECE is committed to a mission of helping brands deploy their e-commerce strategy better with the motto “making e-commerce easier”.
4 VIISA AccerBatch 6 Startups:
EcomEasy Asia - BeeKrowd - TripHunter - BoxShop
“Among various benefits they bring to founders in the acceleration program, I think there are three takeaways I wanted to highlight. Firstly, a bigger picture and a long-term view. As a first-time founder, it seems impossible for us to look beyond the first six months to a year of our business. However, VIISA shows us how vital it is to work on a much longer view and all related possible outcomes. They stand outside the trees that are blocking us from seeing the forest. Secondly, motivation and enthusiasm. The constructive and collaborative environment within VIISA ensures that we keep going forward. Interaction with other founders is a powerful force to keep us motivated along the way. Finally, comprehensive support. Besides knowledge support, they provide direction, experience and also an emotional push. VIISA focuses on developing essential business skills such as accounting, finance, team building, leadership, deal structuring, etc. I think these skills are critical for startup founders.” - Ha Pham, Founder and CEO of Beekrowd - a Batch 6 startup, shared after his co-founder Hoang Ly pitched on stage.
Mr. Duc Tran - Board Member cum CEO of VIISA
At his closing speech of the event, Mr. Duc Tran, Board Member and CEO of VIISA, also called for startups to participate in the Accelerator Program Batch 7 at VIISA at the website www.viisa.vn
VIISA is looking to launch its Batch 7 of Acceleration Program in the first quarter of 2020.
Senior Program Manager, VIISA