232: Shanghai Round Table with Kapil Kane, Jasper Gill, Vincent Djen, Carmen Wang and Nishtha Mehta (Asia Matters)

Podcast highlights:

  • 09:40 What makes Shanghai special? We listen to insights from Kapil Kane, Jasper Gill, Vincent Djen, Carmen Wang and Nishtha Mehta. We learn about the “Shanghai hump”? They say that if you live in Shanghai for four years, you’ll stay forever
  • 19:55 Shanghai is a maturing startup ecosystem so new accelerator models are emerging. We take a look into the world of XNode. XNode is a late stage accelerator, focused on scaling up startups. XNode mainly works with corporate like Intel
  • 41:05 What advice would our entrepreneurs give to people from The West who want to be part of the Shanghai scene? Empathy and tolerance go a long way. Volunteer and work for value exchange, come committed and for the long haul. Learn and localise fast, drop the ego. Stay hungry and foolish

Podcast notes:

  • 00:05 ATP620 – Asia Matters with Graham Brown
  • 00:35 Introducing XNode Shanghai – a physical coworking space in the startup accelerator with Jasper Gill who moved to Shanghai from Vancouver 2 1/2 years ago
  • 02:20 Vincent Djen from Hong Kong, cofounder of FashionEx which helps fashion startups to learn to grow and scale their business in the massive fashion scene in Shanghai
  • 04:15 Carmen Wnag from Nanjing – studying in US, Spain, Italy, India. We learn it’s typical of her generation to go out to the world and absorb different cultures
  • 06:50 What is it about China that you see a lot of female entrepreneurs? 50% of coders at Le Wagon Shanghai are females – ahead of Marseille, Lisbon, Barcelona. Females now are free to do what they want to do and choose to work or start their own company
  • 09:40 What makes Shanghai special? We listen to insights from Kapil Kane, Jasper Gill, Vincent Djen, Carmen Wang and Nishtha Mehta. We learn about the “Shanghai hump”? They say that if you live in Shanghai for four years, you’ll stay forever
  • 12:30 We listen to the story of Vincent Djen and FashionEx. Does the world need a fashion tech accelerator? Vincent shares the stories of how fashion brands are using AI to help find customers. We also hear an interesting case study about 3D printing customised bras for women
  • 15:35 What brought Carmen back to Shanghai after traveling around the world? We hear Carmen’s story of working on augmented reality software for a US company
  • 17:00 Where did Jasper’s scaleup accelerator idea come from? A backstory on Jasper’s earlier work in Shanghai and a further insight into how things move at a pace here
  • 19:55 Shanghai is a maturing startup ecosystem so new accelerator models are emerging. We take a look into the world of XNode. XNode is a late stage accelerator, focused on scaling up startups. XNode mainly works with corporate like Intel
  • 23:01 Why did Vincent choose XNode as his startup’s partner and what keeps him in Shanghai after 12 years of living there? We learn about the opportunities in Shanghai and how in areas such as fashion, it’s emerging to be one of the major metropolitan cities of the world
  • 25:20 What do they wish to change in Shanghai? Jasper is bugged about people not moving to the right-hand side of the escalator while Carmen complains about the price of housing!
  • 28:25 Everything just happens fluidly in Shanghai where it’s so open and easy to talk to people – Jasper’s first week in Shanghai and Carmen’s idea with a mixed-reality dining experience
  • 33:30 Is Shanghai indicative of the rest of China? We learn about the talent and people in Shanghai and how that sets its vibe apart from the rest of China
  • 34:40 35% of its population of Vancouver is of Chinese origin. Did this make it easier for Jasper (who is from Vancouver) to integrate with Shanghai?
  • 37:45 How important is that “international element” in Shanghai?
  • 38:40 Introducing Nishtha Mehta, lean innovation coach. We also talk about making the move from India to China.
  • 41:05 What advice would our entrepreneurs give to people from The West who want to be part of the Shanghai scene? Empathy and tolerance go a long way. Volunteer and work for value exchange, come committed and for the long haul. Learn and localise fast, drop the ego. Stay hungry and foolish

189: 5 Virtual Reality Pioneers to Watch Out for in 2018

VR (Virtual Reality) is coming of age, and Asia is a key player in its evolution. The VR market could surpass US$ 40 Billion globally by 2020 (source Orbis Research). These 5 pioneers are pushing the boundaries of both VR and AR (Augmented Reality) in Japan, China, South Korea and Thailand with the goal of shaping the global stage. In these 5 case studies, we look at investment in Virtual Reality, gaming, education and disaster management.

180: Tipatat Chennavasin – Virtual Reality

Podcast highlights:

  • 03:50 Can VR be used in some kind of desensitization therapy e.g. curing a real-life fear of heights?
  • 12:45 What is the key question VCs and angels should consider when investing in VR startups?
  • 38:20 What’s going to happen to VR in 2018?

Podcast notes:

  • 00:05 Introduction to ATP Stories with Tipatat Chennavasin – Venture Reality Fund
  • 02:40 How did Tipatat get his start in VR (Virtual Reality)?
  • 03:50 Can VR be used in some kind of desensitization therapy e.g. curing a real-life fear of heights?
  • 07:55 How has the VR sector evolved?
  • 09:25 Thoughts on Magic Leap
  • 12:45 What is the key question VCs and angels should consider when investing in VR startups?
  • 15:00 Platforms vs products
  • 18:00 Why is Total Cost of Ownership important to factor into assessing VR startups?
  • 20:05 Can VR make the average IT worker more efficient? Is this a good use of VR?
  • 23:00 Can VR empower creative workers (eg artists)?
  • 27:00 How will VR impact education?
  • 38:20 What’s going to happen to VR in 2018?
  • 43:55 The analog human experience in digital communication through avatars
  • 45:45 It’s not about communication but it’s about collaboration
  • 47:50 The Ford immersive vehicle environment and VR

131: ATP Stories: Alvin Wang Graylin – The World of Virtual Reality with China Regional President Vive HTC

Alvin Wang Graylin is the China Regional President of Vive (VIVE.com) at HTC, leading all aspects of the Vive/VR business in the region. He is also currently Vice-Chairman of the 300-member company Industry of Virtual Reality Alliance (IVRA.com), President of the $18B Virtual Reality Venture Capital Alliance (VRVCA.com) and oversees the Vive X VR accelerator (VIVEX.co) in Asia. Alvin spoke to ATP at length about how Virtual Reality will literally impact every aspect of our lives…while most people think of gaming and entertainment when considering VR, Alvin was passionate about how Virtual Reality tools could radically change the way we educate and get educated. Listen very carefully as Alvin explains how immersive VR experiences, tested in real classrooms in China, can completely recalibrate a student ‘s ability to learn even the most difficult subjects.

126: Sangwon Park – Founder Favorite Medium

Sangwon Park is a Math and Computer Science guy…I am already impressed.

I will admit that I tend to like anybody that lists their first employment as ‘guitarist, van driver, map reader’ and then notes that he also has a masters degree in Computer Science.  Sangwon is also the Founder and CEO of Favorite Medium…an enterprise that builds digital products with a tangible purpose.

With offices in Singapore, Japan, South Korea and the United States, Favorite Medium is a truely global business.  We had a wide ranging discussion that included AR / VR, software development, technology market gaps and the challenges of running distributed teams.  It was really interesting to get Sangwon’s perspective on growing a business from scratch and developing software in a fast moving development environment.

075: Jun Yamadera – Augmented Reality Pioneer

Jun Yamadera founded Eyes Japan in 1995, the first IT startup from the University of Aizu, Fukushima. In the past 20 years, he has been working on various cutting edge projects such as exporting Fukushima rice via web in 1995, making worlds first virtual pottery system, making CG of historical archives of national treasure of Japanese castles, temples, traditional dances and medical motions using motion capture.

He is a pioneer in Augmented Reality wearable technologies, Medical x IT and has been organizing worlds first medical security hackathon since 2012. His team won the the championship in Developers Challenge 2013 Health 2.0 in Silicon Valley. He is the Health 2.0 Fukushima Chapter Leader and a TEDxKobe 2015 Speaker. He started a project called FUKUSHIMA Wheel in the aftermath of the terrible disaster caused by the earthquake and nuclear accident in Fukushima, JAPAN in March 11, 2011.

074: Jakob Lykkegaard – Augmented Reality Entrepreneur

Jakob Lyykegaard is a Danish entrepreneur and the founder of Lykke Studios, a privately held studio creating Augmented Reality experiences.  Prior to this he has, from Bangkok, built and sold 2 companies, Playlab and Pagemodo, the first of which employed 100 people and served 28 million players.

Jakob came to Bangkok in 2009, a journey in itself which is quite inspiring. He dropped out of college in year 1 to go and seek his future in Asia, contrary to the advice of those around him. Was it a good decision in the end? We’ll find out in this interview. We are also going to talk about building and selling a mobile tech startup, life in Thailand and Augmented Reality.