Vulpes invests in Hiip

The story: Singapore-based influencer platform Hiip has secured an undisclosed sum in a bridge round of funding.

Investors: Vulpes Special Opportunities Fund (lead) and other unnamed investors.

Plans with the money: To take advantage of potential acquisition opportunities that have arisen as a result of COVID-19.

What is Hiip?: It is an influencer platform in Southeast Asia that claims to be helping 500 brands to connect and work with more than 10,000 social influencers based on Big Data and Artificial Intelligence. The company has offices in Vietnam, Indonesia and Thailand.

According to the firm, its revenue in June 2020 was double that of June 2019.

Grab, gojek competing to invest in LinkAja

The story: KrAsia has reported, citing unnamed sources that gojek and Grab are in a close race to become an investor in the Indonesian digital payment platform.

Why: For gojek it’s about beating Grab. If Ovo and Dana merge, they will be in a strong position against GoPay, said one source to KrAsia.

LinkAja is currently in the process of raising US$200 million Series B funding.

13 startups selected for YSI SEA-Temasek’s programme

The story: 23 young entrepreneurs from 13 startups from Southeast Asia will showcase their innovative solutions to address pressing sustainability challenges, at Youth Sustainable Impact Southeast Asia (YSI SEA) and Temasek Foundation’s Virtual Demo Day 2020 on 23 July 2020.

The entrepreneurs will pitch to an online audience comprising more than 150 high profile investors, incubators and businesses, in order to secure opportunities to further develop and bring their solutions to the marketplace.

The entrepreneurs, who are between the age of 18 and 35, are selected from a field of more than 1,100 applicants to participate in an online five-month-long Innovative Programme since March 2020.

What is Innovation Programme?: It is a platform to build capacity among the youths to innovate for sustainability, share fundamental sustainability knowledge to spur sustainable entrepreneurial activity, and enable impactful solutions to grow with tools, networks and opportunities.

This year’s Innovation Programme focuses on sustainable solutions for the circular economy, food and agriculture, and energy.

Which are the startups?

Archi: Converting biomaterial from coffee ground waste and other agricultural waste to consumer products such as cups and mugs

Bali Recycle Up: Recycling floral waste into organic incense

The Bamboo Company: Aiming to put bamboo in all parts of one’s life, from houses to products, from food to furniture

Cinemawithoutwall: Creating interactive visual data storytelling for better and faster decision-making, through a multimedia crowdsourcing hub

Circular Blueprint: Upcycling plastic wastes into eco-building materials to make housing more affordable, safer and better

Datanam: Enabling precision vertical farming that is optimised with data

Frescue: Connecting excess food supply with the unmet food demands by redistributing edible but unconsumed food to people and organisations

Hidragro: Providing hydroponic and aquaponic solutions along with training and education to farmers to provide healthier, tech-driven ways of growing and consuming food produce Using Artificial Intelligence to reduce farm expenses by shortening the waiting time and optimising fertiliser input

Light of Hope: Providing clean, renewable energy by incorporating circular economy principles of recycling plastic bottles and using ‘Internet of Things’ for smart monitoring of energy consumption

Phytopia: Horizontally integrating the supply chain that connects farmers with agritech and students with affordable and healthier food in the form of a salad bowl

Rectyic: Converting plastic waste into functional lifestyle items

Solytair: Providing renewable energy powered outdoor cooling systems that help cities and businesses improve the health and well-being of the public on a large scale

Food Asia Award 2020 announces 11 finalists

The story: Singapore’s Future Food Asia (FFA) has revealed the 11 startup finalists competing for its US$100,000 Food Asia Award 2020.

When: The event will take place from 21-25 September 2020. The conference will allow all 11 finalists to present their innovation in front of investors, industry leaders and domain experts.

Who are the finalists?:

AgNext (India): Provides a technology platform for rapid commodity assessment solutions across procurement, trade, production and consumption of food and agriculture value chains.

Agrisea (US): Has developed a way to grow crops in high salt conditions such as salt soils or coastal ocean waters.

Aqua Development (South Korea): Develops and implements nature- inspired aquaculture system KAMI SYS, which it claims achieves 10x higher productivity, zeero antibiotics and chemicals, zero water exchange, competitive production costs.

Crowde (Indonesia): An agriculture-focused fintech startup that puts in touch investors with farmers that are looking for capital to grow business, create employment, and support local communities.

Flurosat (Australia): A full crop cycle analytics provider that delivers proactive reports and alerts on crop performance, stress, nutrient requirements, and sustainable management practices to crop advisors and agronomists in 14 countries.

Fyto Foods: Its plant-based meats resemble uncut real meats and when sliced or diced, would look, cook and taste like real meats with real nutrition

Marine Innovation (South Korea): Goes green and replaces the plastics with its seaweed-based products.

ProAgni (Australia): Develops and commercialises animal nutrition products which improve farm economics and address global challenges, such as food security, antimicrobial resistance, and emissions.

Soos (Israel):  Its solution uses sound waves to transform male embryos into egg-laying females, thereby increasing production capacity in commercial hatcheries.

TartanSense (India): Addresses the problem of weed management for cotton farmers in India through its flagship technology Brijbot.

TerraQuanta (China): Focuses on large-scale application of satellite remote sensing imagery and AI-based data processing technologies to provide insightful data service to fields such as agriculture, forestry, as well as environment protection.

Image Credit: Hiip

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