The Wrap 25 September – Our Weekly Round-up of Funding News

by DIANA DORAHY|25 September 2020

Female Founding News

Hi and welcome to the Wrap, a quick look at the week that was, I’m Diana Dorahy.

Big thanks to Ada Lam from HSBC for all her advice about funding options in our sit down event on Thursday.

Ada took the time to share her experiences from her various roles at HSBC and give advice around:

– credit worthiness and how to manage cash,

– use of digital payments to support smoother business management

– receivable finance opportunities and repayment approach

– term loans under the SME Financing Guarantee Scheme and the Innotech Business Installment Loans

Members, don’t forget to book in your one on one sessions with Ada too.

Thanks also to our Entrepreneur-in-Residence this month, Marianne Hughes, founder of Kno Global, for a choc-full Q&A call with members.

She went through a detailed pitch refinement process plus offered a host of other tips including:

# Align investors and funds with your stage of business

# Be willing to accept mistakes when deploying the invested money but seek to have the right investors who maintain a trial and error philosophy.

# Be aware of raising too much money as that can bring about its own set of problems.

# Be aware that fundraising can distort your priorities. Make sure to keep business growth a priority alongside the fundraising process.


In funding news this week…..

Twitter-backed Indian social network, ShareChat has raised $40 million after the Indian startup added tens of millions of new users in recent months. The network focuses entirely on serving users in non-English languages and the raise is part of its pre-Series E financing round.

Syfe, a Singapore-based startup that wants to make investing more accessible in Asia, has closed a SGD $25.2 million (USD $18.6 million) Series A led by Valar Ventures. Syfe serves customers based in 23 countries, but currently only actively markets its services in Singapore.


My story of the week …..

Goes to a piece about the digital financial services platform, Lucy. The pilot testing is nearly complete and services should roll out by the end of the year.

The fintech startup was established with the intention of helping female entrepreneurs in Asean who are “overlooked, underestimated and underbanked.”

They offer a range of financial services—from safekeeping and savings, to remittances and credit. Plus, community and connections with other business owners.

Essentially, this is a microfinancing solution. This type of loan has had mixed results in Asia. A U.N. report in 2017 actually found that it pushed Cambodians further into poverty.

But Lucy is aware of the pitfalls and has designed a platform it says can prevent some of the traditional pitfalls. We can’t wait to see this in full swing.


My tip of the week…..

Comes from a sit down interview with Dahna Goldstein from Halcyon Ventures.

She says, confidence goes a long way, but knowing what you don’t know as a founder is important.

She also says, it’s important to remember that most failures are not catastrophic. It’s on the backs of those small failures that success is built, and learning from failures shows the kind of resilience that investors look for in entrepreneurs.

My favourite piece of advice was about sales.

She says she wasn’t a natural salesperson and had a hard time closing deals. Her mentor told her; “When you ask for someone’s time, for a meeting or a phone call, you’re essentially creating a compact with that person. You’re asking for their time, and they’re giving it to you with an expectation that it will be worth their while. If you enter a meeting without an objective and leave without making an ask, you’ve broken your end of the compact.”


Coming up next week on Next Chapter Raise.

Well, it’s the start of a new month and a new quarter. Plus our one-on-one sessions with HSBC’s Ada Lam commence for our members.

And it’s time to review your quarterly goals. What do you want to achieve in Q4?

In the meantime, have a great weekend and see you next time on The Wrap.