Daily Markup #841: Top stories in September on 500-backed companies getting recognised, funded, and breaking boundaries

Photo by Ben White on Unsplash

It’s been a month filled with recognition for 500-backed companies, with nine featured in Forbes Asia 100 To Watch, and Bank Negara Malaysia officially recognizing GXBank (a collaboration between Grab and Singtel) as the country’s first digital bank. Oh, and we’ve raised US$143M for promising early-stage and growth companies across Southeast Asia!

Speaking of which, these companies are looking beyond. iPrice breaks out of SEA to save Aussie shoppers money, Hydroleap is eyeing to clean wastewater in Australia, Japan and Indonesia, and Glints has seen an uptick in revenue from companies hiring with a ‘borderless’ mindset.

Missed our last highlights issue? Check it out here.

  • 500 Global closes US$143M across early-stage and growth vehicles for Southeast Asia
  • Christine Tsai reflects on how 2023 has led to brilliant business and technology adaptations globally
  • Nine 500-backed companies across multiple sectors on ‘Forbes Asia 100 To Watch’ list
  • Transcelestial partners Microscan to bring internet to millions in India, the world’s largest population of unconnected people
  • WORQ achieves 70% occupancy for new co-working space in Kuala Lumpur, before even opening its doors
  • Dagangan’s 4-year journey and achievements in improving rural communities in Indonesia
  • iPrice expands beyond SEA, launches iPrice.au to help shoppers in Australia save $100M/year
  • Grab’s GXBank is first digital bank to be approved in Malaysia; aims to meet the needs of the underserved and MSMEs
  • Urbanmetry’s Cha-ly Koh on being addicted to doing things differently, and being told she’d make a bad architect
  • eFishery is expanding their tech solutions for rural areas, catches the attention of Rest of World
  • Pandai partners Prudential to teach children about financial literacy and money management via app
  • Grab launches Web3 wallet in Singapore, complete with NFT vouchers for rewards and payments
  • NewCampus CEO Will Fan on how education companies can embrace revenue-based financing to fuel growth in bear markets
  • Glints sees rise in ‘borderless mindset’ for talents, more companies hiring in Southeast Asia
  • Headquarters partners dtcpay to enable crypto payments at Singapore’s members-only Mandala Club
  • Hydroleap makes it easier for companies to treat wastewater sustainably; eyes entry into Australia, Japan & Indonesia
  • Carsome CEO Eric Cheng reveals his biggest mistake in the early days of rapid expansion

Other stories you may have missed:

  • Carousell partners with Lalamove in Hong Kong to offer same-day delivery for heavier items    
  • Escavox CEO Luke Wood explains how they allow food to talk to us
  • Finaccel launches its #Sefleksibelitu campaign with Olympic badminton gold-medalist Apriyani Rahayu as brand ambassador to showcase flexibility in its financial services
  • Grab partners with Alipay and Kakaopay to allow Korean and Chinese tourists more payment options in Southeast Asia 
  • FarMart’s pivot to SaaS-led B2B food supply pays off with 5x growth in revenue
  • Headquarters launches its crypto-accounting tool for crypto accountants and natives, DeFi builders, and NFT creators.
  • Grab reduces costs to bring forward breakeven target, causing its share prices to spike. 
  • NewCampus is now an accredited business school, opening up new avenues to partnerships, co-creations, and collaborations with other EdTech companies
  • Shohoz integrates with Pubali Bank, allowing Pi users to purchase its bus tickets.
  • SOLS Energy CEO appointed by Malaysian Prime Minister as advisor in the Digital Economy and 4IR council   


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