Happy to share that the BRAVE podcast community has now grown to 40,000+ listeners monthly! We’re thrilled to welcome Gita Sjahrir, Head of Investments at BNI Ventures, as a co-host covering Indonesia on a monthly basis. Please continue to let us know your feedback on how to improve - we’ve upgraded our audio editing, topic diversity and regional market coverage this past month as a result.
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Regional News & Deep Dives
- Shiyan Koh, Managing Partner of Hustle Fund, discusses Bain’s report on regional conglomerate underperformance and the lessons for superapps, as well as Singapore's new $4B chip fabrication plant and missed opportunity for a “Silicon Shield.”
- Gita Sjahrir, Head of Investment at BNI Ventures, shares about what she has learned from her transition from founder of R Fitness to venture capital with Kauffman Fellows, and the narratives she hears about Indonesia as a market.
- Valerie Vu, Founding Partner of Ansible Ventures, talks about President Biden’s recent semiconductor Vietnam visit, billions of dollars of inbound investments, as well as whitespace opportunities due to local skill gaps.
- Maria Li: Tech In Asia Editorial Ethos, Information Opacity & COO Conundrum: Before the Tech in Asia acquisition by SPH announcement, Maria highlighted their commitment to guide the regional tech scene and the trade-offs between digital transformation, audience engagement, monetization and unbiased content. She also delves into the complexities of her COO role and shares insights on her personal criteria for making career decisions.
- Andy Hwang: Early Financial Curiosity, Capital vs. Coaching in VC & Risk Assessment: Andy, General Partner of Wavemaker, shares how his front-row seat to Apple’s growth inspired his entrepreneurial spirit. Coming from a family of engineers, he also nurtured a keen personal interest in coaching. He discusses how fear holds people back from taking the necessary risks even when decisiveness would serve them better.
- Tsun-Yan Hsieh: Board Leadership (Sony, Dyson & Singapore Airlines), Art of Coaching & Positive Influence: Tsun-Yan generously shares his lessons from being on the board of renowned companies like Sony, Dyson & Singapore Airlines. He emphasizes the necessity of frank, private discussions and the courage to voice dissenting opinions. He recounts the challenges of negotiating with top-tier executives - which he has written into his new book, "Positive Influence".
- Craig Bristol Dixon: Maximizing Startup Potential, Family Office Partnerships & Bravery vs. Stupidity: Craig, General Partner of Accelerating Asia, emphasizes why founders need to understand the dynamics between incubators and venture capitalists. He sheds light on the complexities of establishing fruitful collaborations with family offices. He also delves into the nuanced balance between bravery and stupidity, and reflects on his own journey and the benefit of hindsight.
- Yann Schuermans: 400 Years Family Legacy, Indonesia Supply Chain & AB InBev to Circles.Life to Baskit Founder: Yann shared about growing up in a family with over 400 years of supply chain experience led him to join AB InBev and eventually found Baskit to digitize Indonesia's supply chains. He talked about Indonesia's multi-faceted supply chain, unit economics, and whether it’s better to disrupt or complement the existing supply chain players.
- Kevin Brockland: Founding Indelible Ventures, Elevating Malaysia's Startup Ecosystem & Navigating Fatherhood: Kevin sheds light on founding Indelible Ventures to invest in Malaysia pre-seed startups. He highlights the need for Malaysia to improve capital formation, legal policies and founder training platforms. He also shares about how fatherhood has changed view on the unpredictability of life.
- Matt Abrahams: Stanford MBA Public Speaking Research, Conquering Anxiety Biology & Gen Z vs. Millennial Attention Span: Ripping his pants on stage inspired Matt to master the science and art of public speaking as a Stanford professor. Mastery is a continuous journery, where even gifted orators like Martin Luther King Jr. got a C- in Public Speaking in his university days.
Do you know a founder who is moving on to a new professional chapter in their life after their startup? This may be due to an exit, wind-down or cofounder departure. We are organizing our third Phoenix offsite on December 2, Saturday, 10am-12pm SGT. We’ll be hearing from other founders about their earlier transitions, how to mentally integrate earlier learnings and exploring new opportunities as a future tech operator, VC or repeat founder. Confidential, pro bono, 2 hours, virtual. Let them know they can RSVP here.
Yiping Goh, McKinsey partner and co-founder of their LEAP business-building practice, shared about regional startup opportunities due to the rising middle class on Tech in Asia. Learn how she worked her way up from working in a bicycle factory to founder to Quest VC partner and now McKinsey Partner.
Cherilyn Tan, cofounder of Tessaract Technologies, discusses data handling through their legaltech platform on Tech in Asia. Check out her journey to be fearless and the hard truths about being a mom founder.
Ee Chien Chua is closing his bar Jekyll & Hyde on Dec 31 2023 after a decade of sweat, blood and tears. Visit them for Singaporean soul food and one last signature cocktail. Hear his pandemic podcast about how hard they had worked to survive as a business.
Best Read / Best Watch
"Unfolding" by Ali Schultz, cofounder of Reboot.io. I laughed at the line “At 40–we begin to unpack ourselves from the boxes we’ve folded ourselves into, especially as it relates to who we are and our work. Many of us arrive here as fine pieces of origami.” No easy answers to the questions we ask ourselves, the expectations that others have of us, and the dreams we had. How do we unfold ourselves into the next chapter of life?
“There is a vitality, a life force, an energy, a quickening that is translated through you into action, and because there is only one of you in all of time, this expression is unique. And if you block it, it will never exist through any other medium and it will be lost. The world will not have it. It is not your business to determine how good it is nor how valuable nor how it compares with other expressions. It is your business to keep it yours clearly and directly, to keep the channel open. You do not even have to believe in yourself or your work. You have to keep yourself open and aware to the urges that motivate you. Keep the channel open. As for you, Agnes, you have so far used about one-third of your talent. No artist is pleased. No satisfaction whatever at any time.There is only a queer divine dissatisfaction, a blessed unrest that keeps us marching and makes us more alive than the others.” - Martha Graham
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