SINGAPORE - Media OutReach - 17 August 2021 - Having recently raised a six-figure USD Pre-Series A round investment from Gobi Partners China (the investment manager of Alibaba Entrepreneurs Fund), SleekFlow was selected for the Global Launch Singapore Program inaugurated by the global venture capital firm 500 Startups. It marks SleekFlow's first move in their Southeast Asia (SEA) expansion plan apart from setting up a sales hub in Singapore.
Caption: SleekFlow first 4 members, earlier photo.
SleekFlow, along with 11 other selected participants, hopes to scale like many of the tech unicorns from 500 Startups' global portfolio, including Canva and Grab. "We feel so honored to be selected and thrilled to join the 500 Startups Global Network. Knowing that they have invested in more than 2500 companies across more than 77 countries is empowering. We appreciate this valuable chance and look forward to getting insights about the SEA market and gaining regional exposure," said Henson Tsai, the founder of SleekFlow.
Carrie Liauw, Regional Director of Startup Programs APAC from 500 Startups, said, "This being our fourth batch of the Global Launch program, we are really excited about the selected startups we are able to continuously support. This program will help startups like SleekFlow navigate their expansion into SEA through a customized curriculum and dedicated mentorship. We look forward to seeing SleekFlow make an impact in the SEA market. "
Henson has also joined a Hong Kong-based accelerator FoundersHK whose program advisor is Bonnie Cheung, a former venture partner for 500 Startups. "We are amazed at the level of execution and the speed of market domination demonstrated by our current batch of Hong Kong startups. It is not hard to see Hong Kong's international nature has given them an unfair advantage when it comes to global expansion. As e-commerce continues to boom in SEA, I am eager to see the hyper-growth of social commerce products like SleekFlow in these mobile-first countries."
At the very early stage of SleekFlow, the total revenue was about 5000 SGD. It has proliferated over the past years and achieved annual recurring revenue of seventh-digit USD today. "Given 500 Startups' experience in nurturing entrepreneurs globally, we are eager to equip ourselves and get ready for the global stage. We have faith in the full potential of our social messaging platform, especially for eCommerce, which I believe is a thriving industry in SEA," Henson added.
Bio of the Founder
Henson Tsai (26 years old) graduated from Imperial College London and worked as an investment banker at HSBC and Ernst & Young. Before SleekFlow's success, Henson already had two entrepreneurial experiences.