Category Archives: Interviews

MYHERO Startup Runs its Business by Rewarding Online Users to be more Responsible

MYHERO is a startup building a gamified social network specifically designed for people to report & consume purposeful and relevant information according to their physical location. Founded less than a year ago, the startup is close to release its version 1 really soon. NextUpAsia.com takes a look into the making of the revolutionary app which will ensure that public reporting of crime and natural disasters can now be easily done by netizens around the globe, while rewarding them for their responsible ethics to come together and keep their cities and neighbourhoods safe with MYHERO.

MYHERO App Set to Make Public Reporting of Crime Digitally Easy
MYHERO App Set to Make Public Reporting of Crime Digitally Easy

Getting to know about The Start-Up

  • Tell us more about Your Company – What have you built? What is your product or service to your customers? What is your track-record so far?

MYHERO is a gamified social network specifically designed for people to report & consume purposeful and relevant information according to their physical location.

We are currently championing one major use of MYHERO, which is to share crime & safety information so users of MYHERO are able to preempt or avoid unsafe situations. We also complement that core function with personal safety features like SOS button to call for help from nearby users or to your designated emergency contacts whenever you are in trouble.

This is only the beginning, as we have plans to pivot to other markets whenever necessary, but we are now focusing on building an app that is intelligent enough to provide you information you really care about at the right time & and the right moment. The sky is the limit.

  • Why did you decide to go into this business? Is it because it is a lucrative market? Is it a Blue Ocean which your talents and expertise through your business can provide?

We go into this business in MYHERO because it’s eventual that everyone needs to consume purposeful and relevant information like for example – crime & safety information whenever you travel to a new place.

We really want to build a socially responsible product on top of just making money.

 

There are plenty of personal safety apps around but we like to position ourselves to compete in the blue ocean but we attentive to the red ocean so that we are able to differentiate ourselves from our closest competitors.

Easy Functions for MYHERO App Users
Easy Functions for MYHERO App Users
  • Please share with us, when you established your organization during its early days – How did you fund it? Any tips on raising the funds? Any tips on convincing investors?

I can only share through personal experience. For me, I raised fund for my venture by repeatedly pitching our investor, arranging meetups, keep on reminding him to consider my proposal, etc.

It was tough & energy consuming but I had no formula, I think for my case it’s really about being vulnerable of my true characters to my investor and fortunately that earns his trust and confidence.

  • Where do you see your business growing into, for the next 5 to 10 years?

We definitely want to be the leading app globally. Why think small when you can think big. Fortunately, our team share the same aspiration and with some smart business maneuvers; I’m confident we can achieve our goals.

MYHERO's team of young entrepreneurs with the representative of NextUpAsia.com and the Founding Team of its parent company, Dino Media
MYHERO’s team of young entrepreneurs with the representative of NextUpAsia.com and the Founding Team of its parent company, Dino Media
  • What is your vision for the industry that you are in? Do you see a trend coming up that your business can capitalize?

I think there is going to be a need of utility social networks. We have plenty of recreation social networks today like Facebook and Twitter but as a company we want to be that group of people that would fulfil that need. Utility social network is definitely more useful at times of challenges and troubles. It is still a bold prediction but we believe users don’t always know what they want.

 

### End of Part 2 ###

About MYHERO:

MYHERO is a startup building a gamified social network specifically designed for people to report & consume purposeful and relevant information according to their physical location. Founded less than a year ago, the startup is close to release its version 1 really soon.

About the Founding Team of MYHERO:

The pioneering team at MYHERO always on the edge of pushing the status quo in design and technology. We are never satisfied and we are laser focus at building a technogical solution without losing the touch of human interaction. We have strong beliefs that our product is able to bring out the hero of our users.

ConcreteJungle #42 : Cafe Hop KL

cafe hop kl.001

For the love of coffee, four formed a fellowship to map independent coffee shops around Kuala Lumpur. These 28 were selected for this passion project based on a combination of good coffee, food, service and good vibes. Find out how the co-founders met; the many challenges of realising this mapping project; and the lessons learned from pitching it on Indiegogo.

Continue reading ConcreteJungle #42 : Cafe Hop KL

Fastest Growing Asia Digital Media Company Dino Media Takes Netizens by Storm

Dino Media Publishing consist of a network of news portals and social media channels, serving 3 million people monthly with news about entertainment, lifestyle, humor, viral news, and all things trendy. NextUpAsia.com chats with one of the founding members of one of the fastest growing startups in Asia about the Art of Building a company to serve millions of content hungry consumers online.

Dino Media has captured over 3 million readers online just within less than a year of its founding
Dino Media has captured over 3 million readers online just within less than a year of its founding

(a)   Getting to know The Start-Up Entrepreneur

 

Aaron Teng is one of the founding members of Dino Media's Digital Publishing Arm
Aaron Teng is one of the founding members of Dino Media’s Digital Publishing Arm
  • Tell us more about yourself – Who are you, what do you do, what are your qualifications (If any) and what have made you into the successful entrepreneur that you are today?

I’m Aaron Teng, my team and myself are part of the founding members of Dino Media’s Digital Publishing Arm. We build and grow news portals as well as various social media channels. Our team are from diverse backgrounds from graphic design to editing and all of them are equipped with great passion for technology and information. We wouldn’t accomplished what we got today without them.

  •  Why did you get started on this path towards building your own business?

We want to build our own business in digital publishing because on top of having control of the flow of information, we genuinely want to entertain our audience with great engaging content. That would be our primary motivation that is still driving us forward.

  • Was there any inspiration or anyone who inspired you to pursue your dream to become an entrepreneur today?

Naturally, in the modern digital publishing industry, we would put Khailee Ng from SAYS as one of the people who greatly influence what we do. Our team’s dream is not short of ambition and we want to make Malaysia proud.

  • In your experience, what are the 3 Winning Traits that Entrepreneurs should possess when they start their business?

a) Adapatable  b) Determination c) Visionary

 

### End of Part 1 ###

About Dino Media:

Dino Media Publishing consist of a network of news portals and social media channels, serving 3 million people monthly with news about entertainment, lifestyle, humor, viral news, and all things trendy.

About the Founders:

We are a group of young and capable team who are hustling to entertain the world with stories and news we find engaging. We strive to never stop innovating the way you read news and we hope we could ultimately build a news portal that would channel you with personalized news that really matter.

 

3 Business Wisdoms shared by Email Management Startup Mailbird on Success

Mailbird is a creative email platform that brings productivity back into your life on the most widely used operating system today, Windows. Email today has become very insecure, a major stress in the workplace and slow with the innovative process that adjusts to how we work and communicate online today. NextUpAsia.com chats with the CEO and Co-Founder, Andrea Loubier about how she started this revolutionary business online.

Changing the Way We Use Emails by Mailbird
Changing the Way We Use Emails by Mailbird

(a)    Getting to know about The Wisdom behind The Start-Up

  • What would be your 3 main advice that you would offer to entrepreneurs who want to start up today?

1)      Find something you are truly excited about, a business idea that provides a solution to you and at least thousands around the world.

2) Define how you are going to be better, stronger different than others in your vertical – measure yourself up against the competition with a plan to be on top.

3) Don’t be afraid to tell people about your idea, because before you exert the time and effort into it (because it takes a hell of a lot of time and resources to do it) get the feedback, welcome the challenges that people propose about your business idea and use that to your advantage and go for it.

  • If you have a wishlist, what would you want Governments or the Private Sectors to do, to assist businesses like yours? Just any wish and why?

Government grants allocated to tech communication and productivity businesses. I’d want a global effort to make online communication truly secure, available for the world (I love Google’s Project Loon for example). Having a strong collaborative network in offering productivity through our email platform to large student groups, small to large businesses, partnerships with local ISP’s.

Why?

Because I believe in our strong vision to be the de facto world-wide best email client for Windows that delivers speed, productivity, an awesome user experience and a highly secure means for both personal and business communication.

Mailbird sets to make managing emails for companies and busy people easy
Mailbird sets to make managing emails for companies and busy people easy
  • Any last remarks to close your ‘The Start-Up Entrepreneur Speaks’ series for now?

Working on a startup is the biggest roller coaster ride you’ll ever experience, there are a ton of uncertainties and challenges. It is probably one of the hardest things to do, but if you love building something from nothing then you will embrace those moments of struggle and actually find it very rewarding and fun. I think more people should pursue entrepreneurship.

### END OF PART 4 ###

About Mailbird: 

Mailbird is a creative email platform that brings productivity back into your life on the most widely used operating system today, Windows. Email today has become very insecure, a major stress in the workplace and slow with the innovative process that adjusts to how we work and communicate online today. With key productivity hacks and differentiators like multi-account support for both IMAP and POP3 accounts, multi-language support to make Mailbird more globally available, data driven email management with the Wingman productivity booster and a community driven initiative to solve the many unique problems with email.

About The Entrepreneur: 

Andrea is the CEO and co-founder of Mailbird, an email tech startup based in Bali that focuses on email security and productivity hacks on the most creative platform for email innovation ever. She is half American and half Filipino, thrives on diversity as a social connector, particularly for women in Asia that are leading influencers and founders of tech companies. With 7+ years of marketing, project and community management under her belt, she is a firm believer in the strength of women in the world of tech, in the fast-evolving startup ecosystem emerging across Asia

The Inspiration Behind Social Media Platform Startup for Public Safety Developed by MYHERO

MYHERO is a startup building a gamified social network specifically designed for people to report & consume purposeful and relevant information according to their physical location. Founded less than a year ago, the startup is close to release its version 1 really soon. NextUpAsia.com takes a look into the making of the revolutionary app which will ensure that public reporting of crime and natural disasters can now be easily done by netizens around the globe, while rewarding them for their responsible ethics to come together and keep their cities and neighbourhoods safe with MYHERO.

MYHERO Rewards Online Users for being more Responsible about Public Safety
MYHERO Rewards Online Users for being more Responsible about Public Safety

 

Getting to know The Start-Up Entrepreneur

  • Tell us more about yourself – Who are you, what do you do, what are your qualifications (If any) and what have made you into the successful entrepreneur that you are today?

My name is Wei Chi, my team and myself are part of the founding members of the MYHERO project.  We were from diverse background with a great passion for technology and business. This has became our primary motivation to kickstart MYHERO.

 

MYHERO's Co-Founder Chan Wei Chi
MYHERO’s Co-Founder Chan Wei Chi
  • Why did you get started on this path towards building your own business?

I always disagree to the notion that every fresh graduate have to follow the conventional path to work for a company, and gradually climbing the corporate ladder.

Although I acknowledge there is valid points at employement but personally, I would rather work my hardest to build my own dream right from the beginning rather than working hard to build dreams of others.

  • Was there any inspiration or anyone who inspired you to pursue your dream to become an entrepreneur today?

Our company’s angel investor – Sean Teoh is definitely the immediate inspiration to me as we work very closely together. He is incredibly successful with his F&B businesses and various investments. I genuinely think people like Sean will be the kind of individuals that would make Malaysia a serious global player.

  • In your experience, what are the 3 Winning Traits that Entrepreneurs should possess when they start their business?

a) Proactiveness b) Persevarence c) Humilty

### End of Part 1 ###

About MYHERO:

MYHERO is a startup building a gamified social network specifically designed for people to report & consume purposeful and relevant information according to their physical location. Founded less than a year ago, the startup is close to release its version 1 really soon.

About the Founding Team of MYHERO:

The pioneering team at MYHERO always on the edge of pushing the status quo in design and technology. We are never satisfied and we are laser focus at building a technogical solution without losing the touch of human interaction. We have strong beliefs that our product is able to bring out the hero of our users.

Marketing at Almost Zero Cost to Revolutionize Email Management with Mailbird

Mailbird is a creative email platform that brings productivity back into your life on the most widely used operating system today, Windows. Email today has become very insecure, a major stress in the workplace and slow with the innovative process that adjusts to how we work and communicate online today. NextUpAsia.com chats with the CEO and Co-Founder, Andrea Loubier about how she started this revolutionary business online.

Andrea Loubier Entrepreneur behind Mailbird
Andrea Loubier Entrepreneur behind Mailbird

(a)    Getting to know about The Strategies to Be The No.1 Start-Up

  • Marketing is King! How did you publicize your business? How did you get people to notice you and not your competitors?

We were in the right place at the right time. When we decided to go full throttle with Mailbird, there was a lot of hype in the world of email. Some topics included how many web based email servers were not secure, how emails were scanned and the lack of privacy and trust is always a concern. Sparrow, an email client for Mac, was acquired by Google. Mozilla’s open sourced email client Thunderbird announced ceasing development to focus and reallocate on other Mozilla products. Other email clients like Postbox, Inky, Airmail etc came to surface. Hotmail.com rebranded completely their web interface and style and renamed it Outlook.com- they later announced their POP3 only web email server would for the first time have IMAP support.

Marissa Mayer was named the new CEO for Yahoo with focused efforts on revamping Yahoo Mail. An online resource for anything to do with email launched called Other Inbox along with email focused tech conferences in Silicon Valley, called Inbox Love.

In the hot bed of email news, we simply found targeted tech publishers, bloggers, newspapers, magazines, forums and websites and shared the launch of a new Windows email client and people responded because we targeted the right channels, and built relationships with the right people.

Mailbird Levrages on Publicity by the media to build userbase
Mailbird Leverages on Publicity by the media to build userbase

A tip is to focus on contacting relevant tech publishers who’ve written on the subject matter of your business, and you should have a pretty compelling story to tell. Because we were named best email client for Windows by both PC World and IT World, and also a world class software by CNET’s Download.com users who were seeking this solution for email are happy to support Mailbird.

What is most interesting is your angle, what differentiates you from the competition. What do you offer that they do not. If you can clearly answer that, then go out there and tell the world about it and your early adopters will come.

  • They say, Talents is what make or break the business. For yourself, how did you get your talents and what did you do to make them remain working for you?

Character has a lot to do with how far you will go in life. I would say that one of my strengths as a person is that I am very much a networker, personable and easy to talk to. In addition to that, experience and learning by doing and through failures and mistakes is how you grow and become better.

I always grew up in a very internationally diverse setting, I like to engage with people and I love learning about what motivates people and how to build a business around your target user’s needs. I am constantly learning about great business development and marketing initiatives, and love to test different strategies; it is all part of learning and growing with your business and it is different for everyone.

You can never just be an expert on one thing, because the world continues to change, especially when it comes to technology. How you operate and communicate your vision has to also be flexible and adapt with the ecosystem in your vertical.

My background in project management in working with huge international corporations has taught be a lot about setting priorities, goals and delivering happiness to people you interact with.

Mailbird participates in many Startup events to build awareness among startup community
Mailbird participates in many Startup events to build awareness among startup community
  • If you could name 3 Main Criteria that have made You and Your Business successful, what are those 3 Main Criteria?

Early engagement with users. Relentless drive in communicating our vision to the world. A solid, reliable and talented team that cohesively works together to move a business forward.

  • Businesses need to Innovate in order to stay Competitive in the marketplace – How have you innovated your company to be competitive until today?

We’ve challenged the old school design and user experience for email on the Windows platform. We’ve adopted new technologies in building an email client. We are focused on the Windows platform – so you know it is good since we aren’t trying to be available on every OS, only to deliver a half-assed product.

We constantly test viral marketing strategies. We constantly seek opportunities that work hand in hand with email such as security and productivity. We are building community around email innovation with our developmental milestone of building the Mailbird API allowing 3rd party developers to build and distribute their super cool email productivity apps right from within Mailbird, so you have everything you’ve ever needed to manage email, your life and your business from one place.

Mailbird is not just another email client, and we are the only ones truly working to fix the problem(s) with email.

  • Global economic uncertainties Kill Businesses – In your mind, how did you weather this challenge for your business?

Well first you have to pre-determine the potential risks and threats to your business in building a thorough business plan. Economic uncertainties include optimism, employment, demand, profits, inflation, investment and access to finance. So if all things fail or go downhill in the global economic foreground we believe Mailbird will survive because people still need a way to communicate with each other online.

With Radicati’s 2013 – 2014 statistical report that email accounts are growing at a substantial rate of 6% in the billions each year, we know email isn’t going anywhere. Should there be an economic downturn, sure software will be the last thing people think about buying, but because Mailbird offers a freemium solution we believe that our user base will sustain and adapt with changing economic climates.

Startup Camp
Mailbird is one of the startups benefiting from Asia’s boom of revolutionary technology businesses

 

You see more women stepping up in senior management roles which is seen as an opportunity in the changing world economies and another strength for the Mailbird team. Also should companies consider budget cuts, if you look at the email client that currently dominates a workplace that runs Windows machines, Mailbird easily becomes the alternative solution with an value-added offer to businesses at a fraction of the price of solutions out there today for Windows users.

Whatever happens in the global economy, Mailbird will be available as a technology solution for communication. Even better, when the world emerges from economic struggle, in that cycle comes many new solutions and adaptations. People get more resourceful, more creative and become more open to alternative solutions when it comes to building a business and stimulating economic growth.

 

### END OF PART 3 ###

About Mailbird: 

Mailbird is a creative email platform that brings productivity back into your life on the most widely used operating system today, Windows. Email today has become very insecure, a major stress in the workplace and slow with the innovative process that adjusts to how we work and communicate online today. With key productivity hacks and differentiators like multi-account support for both IMAP and POP3 accounts, multi-language support to make Mailbird more globally available, data driven email management with the Wingman productivity booster and a community driven initiative to solve the many unique problems with email.

About The Entrepreneur: 

Andrea is the CEO and co-founder of Mailbird, an email tech startup based in Bali that focuses on email security and productivity hacks on the most creative platform for email innovation ever. She is half American and half Filipino, thrives on diversity as a social connector, particularly for women in Asia that are leading influencers and founders of tech companies. With 7+ years of marketing, project and community management under her belt, she is a firm believer in the strength of women in the world of tech, in the fast-evolving startup ecosystem emerging across Asia