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VIISA launches Accelerator Program Batch 4

Released at: 12:42, 06/07/2018

VIISA launches Accelerator Program Batch 4

Photo: VIISA

Vietnam Innovative Startups Accelerator calling for startups to participate in Accelerator Program Batch 4, with applications open from July 6.

by Nghi Do

The Vietnam Innovative Startups Accelerator (VIISA) has officially called for startups to participate in the Accelerator Program Batch 4, with applications open from July 6.

VIISA commemorated one and a half years in action as well as the graduation of the Acceleration Program Batch 3 with its third Investment Day on July 3. Held at the Atrium Lounge in the Renaissance Riverside Hotel in Ho Chi Minh City, the event comprised six startup pitches, drawing the attendance of over 100 investors, corporate partners, and mentors.

Investment Day is an opportunity for the startup community to meet and discuss leading regional investors and seek opportunities. The three best startups in the Acceleration Program Batch 3 in fields such as smart farming, digital, and software services made presentations on products and strategies to investors inside and outside of Vietnam. Promising teams will also get up to $200,000 in further investment funding.

It attracted more than 100 investors, companies, and startup communities from countries like Singapore, Japan, South Korea, and Vietnam.

Over the last three months the startups from Acceleration Program Batch 3 received investment of $15,000 in cash and an undisclosed amount of in-kind services, and were heavily involved in activities ranging from one-on-one sessions with seasonal investors to dedicated workshops with experts in growth hacking, data analytics, and storytelling, including but not limited to mentors and partners from Vietnam and beyond.

The startups were also provided with technical resources, office accommodation, and access to world-class mentors and suitable investors. Investment Day is a chance for startups to demonstrate the skills they have been trained in and to call for investment.

“I’ve learned a lot from VIISA, such as methods for generating my ideas and innovations, finding the right customer, identifying and tracking the key metrics that are suitable for my business model, and, most importantly, how to craft a compelling elevator pitch or story about what we are doing,” said Mr. Hieu Truong, CEO of UrBox. “I am truly impressed by VIISA’s mentors and team members and look forward to the opportunity to continue working with the association in the next phase.”

“VIISA Investment Day left me with two impressions,” said Ms. Ha Thanh An, CEO of Startup Viet Partners. “The first is about the quality of the startups. I saw these founders make their pitches during Internal Demo Day, and today it’s amazing to see that the pitching skills and quality have improved dramatically. The second is the investor community. VIISA has invited a large number of investors, both domestic and international, to attend the program. I have known of VIISA from the beginning, and in two years the program has had success stories such as WeFit and WisePass. I believe that the startups in Batch 3 and in the next batches will continue to write success stories.”

Investment Day also witnessed presentations by three portfolio companies from VIISA’s previous Batches, which already raised over $800,000 in investment in previous rounds. The teams return to this Investment Day with expectations of closing their upcoming round in order to take their businesses to the regional and global stage.

Among which, WisePass has already expanded outside Vietnam, operating in four cities (Ho Chi Minh City, Hanoi, Bangkok, and Manila and targeting Jakarta next), and has closed some significant partnerships with prominent partners such as the Marriott Group, CGV, Starbucks, and Citibank.

Another company, CyHome, has developed partnerships with over 40 apartment complexes around Vietnam, serving over 2,000 apartments, and recently expanded their platforms to Phnom Penh.

The six startups on Investment Day included three in the VIISA Accelerator Program Batch 3 and three featured portfolio companies.

“Few people would have believed we could reach this stage in such a short time span,” said Mr. Le Hoang Anh, Chairman of VIISA. “Our Top 5 companies have seen ten-fold growth in sales, built up a network of 1,300 business partners in three countries, and have over 10,000 active users a month. Wonderful results!”

Mr. Tran Huu Duc, CEO of VIISA, concluded the event by setting out the challenge for VIISA moving forward. “Through three batches, we have found many talented founders and creative ideas,” he said. “With support from VIISA, these startups have undergone rigorous assignments, seeking ways to implement KPIs in three months to be present here on Investment Day. VIISA is committed to working together with the development of startups to help them achieve the best results on their business journey.”

On Investment Day, VIISA officially called for startups to participate in the Accelerator Program Batch 4 at the website www.viisa.vn, starting from July 6, with the program scheduled to begin in the fourth quarter of 2018.

The six startups include:

URBOX - Developing privileges programs across all lifestyle angles digitally via a platform of e-vouchers and loyalty programs.

SMARTMEAL - Meal-plan delivery service that focuses on making healthy eating easy and more accessible in Vietnam.

AQUAGROWGREENS - Easy-to-grow micro-greens kit that turns anyone into a gardener and has a social media aspect.

CYFEER- Changing the way people live by developing e-solutions for apartment and building management.

WEFIT - Connecting you with more than 500 gyms and fitness classes in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City via a monthly subscription plan.

WISEPASS - Lifestyle membership platform that lets subscribers enjoy free perks such as a free cup of coffee, lunch, dinner, or bottle of wine or spirits.


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