The finalists of the Alpha Startups™ Digital Accelerator Cohort 41 couldn’t be more diverse.
From early childhood education to building inspection through AI-driven processing, ten promising Malaysian startups showcased their ideas at the Demo Day which unfolded after an intensive 5-weeks of acceleration.
The three judges, Suresh Thiru, former CEO of SEEK Asia, YM Dato’ Syed Haizam, Managing Partner of The Hive Southeast Asia and Bikesh Lakhmichand, CEO & Founding Partner of 1337 Ventures presented the top positions to iKEY and Langwords.
iKEY, founded by Calvin Lee and Earnest Tan is based on the idea that thousands of Malaysian educators should have a singular platform for their administrative and operations tasks as work unfolds.
“I figured if the food industry has its own system to assist in operations, why not the education sector?” By recognising this gap, we developed iKEY with the purpose of improving efficiency and saving time for local educators”, shared Calvin.
Their cloud-based management system is currently adopted by more than 350 education centres in Malaysia, consisting of pre-schools, kindergarten, tuition, daycare centres, international schools and enrichment centres, assisting them through online payment/invoicing, data management, student attendance and even reporting.
By offering a diverse range of tailor-made language solutions in 50+ languages, Langwords aims to bridge the language barrier through translation, localization, interpreting, copywriting, transcreation and subtitling services.
“Alpha Startups™ has boosted my morale and confidence as a startup founder. It has helped me understand Langwords better, said co-founder, Yin Ooi.
Together with her co-founder, Joy Ooi, the next step for Langwords is to implement the strategies presented during the Demo Day, which is to develop a portal for their clients and freelancers. This is to increase their company’s efficiency and brand reach. Yin Ooi adds, “hopefully we can reach, regional and international markets soon!”
The annual Alpha Startups™ Digital Accelerator reflects 1337 Ventures’ dedication to building promising and impactful Malaysian startups. It has been a silver lining, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic. During the global lockdowns, established corporations and small businesses in Malaysia were disrupted, but 1337 Ventures went 100% virtual with Alpha Startups™ to help local startups and SMEs thrive.
“We are excited to announce the winners of cohort 41. 10 years ago, I started 1337 Ventures with a simple vision to help entrepreneurs avoid the pitfalls that I faced when starting my own company.
From the scale of just a simple SoHo office with Adhoc mentorship to an online programme that has since scaled and helped over 1,000 entrepreneurs all over Malaysia and SEA is something that I never could have imagined. I really look forward to continuing to grow and improving our programmes and offerings to impact the Malaysian entrepreneurial ecosystem further,” added Bikesh Lakhmichand, CEO & Founding Partner of 1337 Ventures.
1337 Ventures will continue to host the pre-accelerator virtually, with applications for the next now open, especially to those in the agri-tech and food-tech industries. Malaysian startups can also benefit from virtual fireside chats and webinars organised by venture capitalist, that feature industry leaders and mentors to guide and support startup founders.