H.E.R.O.’s Journey in Tech (16 August 2018) – Japan still has the edge in solid-state batteries, with its companies holding nearly half the patents in the world for related technologies + Lessons From Da Vinci on Work and Life

H.E.R.O.’s Journey in Tech (16 August 2018) – Japan still has the edge in solid-state batteries, with its companies holding nearly half the patents in the world for related technologies + Lessons From Da Vinci on Work and Life


  • Trend Micro Launches Product to Protect Telecom Networks Serving Business and Home Users; New security solution mitigates risks in high volume, dynamic network architecture environments (BW)
  • In race for better batteries, Japan hopes to extend its lead; TDK began shipping samples of CeraCharge, a solid-state battery measuring just 4.5mm by 3.2mm by 1.1mm — smaller than a grain of rice. CeraCharge cells use a lithium-based ceramic oxide as the electrolyte, which is layered into a battery pack. TDK says the product maintains its performance in high- and low-temperature environments. Similar products designed for use in internet-of-things devices are also being developed by other Japanese companies, including Murata Manufacturing and Taiyo Yuden. Japan still has the edge in solid-state batteries, with its companies holding nearly half the patents in the world for related technologies. Japanese companies with key technologies include Toho Titanium, which has developed a high-output solid electrolyte that combines titanium and lanthanum, a rare-earth metal. It recently started shipping samples of the product. Optical glass maker Ohara has developed a glass-based electrolyte. It that could have wide commercial applications (Nikkei)
  • Sony’s catch-up plan to break into pro camera market (JT)
  • Chinese Online Drugstore 111 Inc. Files For $200M US IPO (CMN)
  • Lenovo’s Sharp Knife Is Behind Those Meaty Profits; Cost savings are welcome. They’re also hard to repeat. (Bloomberg)

BATTSS – Baidu, Alibaba, Tencent, TSMC, Softbank, Samsung

  • Alibaba offers cloud computing for Southeast Asia’s retailers to embrace digitisation and big data (SCMP)
  • Tencent’s first profit drop since 2005 blamed on wait for Chinese regulators to approve new games (SCMP); Tencent posts first profit decline since 2005 on lower gaming revenue, investment gains (SCMP)
  • Tencent Slumps After First Profit Drop in at Least a Decade (Bloomberg); Regulatory limbo hits Tencent with first profit fall in nearly 13 years (Reuters); China Makes WeChat’s 1 Billion Users a Tempting Target for Tencent; With growth from games slowing, tapping the social network looks increasingly attractive. (Bloomberg)
  • How WeChat became China’s everyday mobile app (SCMP)
  • Tencent Is Participating In More Tech IPOs Than Anyone Else; Tencent was an investor in a whopping 12 tech companies that have gone public since the start of 2017. (CBI)

  • SoftBank Ventures leads W10b investment in Bepro11 (Investor)

FAANNMG – Facebook, Amazon, Apple, Nvidia, Netflix, Microsoft, Google

  • Amazon Has a New Rival in India, and It Isn’t Walmart; A draft e-commerce law threatens the core of the company’s business model. (Bloomberg)
  • Amazon Has YouTube Envy; It wants to turn its Twitch online hangout for avid gamers into a broader video service. (Bloomberg)
  • 5 Reasons to Buy Nvidia Stock Now (Barron’s)

Asia Tech & Innovation Trends

  • An Uber for Trucks Is Hitting Obstacles in China; The industry is ripe for disruption, but it’s a lot tougher than ride-hailing. (Bloomberg)
  • SynchroLife, blockchain-based restaurant discovery app from Japan, raises $720K (Bridge)
  • Hospitals in Japan turn to high-tech to treat language barriers; Multilingual AI service among new offerings to help staff deal with foreigners (Nikkei)
  • Visual recognition tech to drive O2O interactions in future: AIQ; VRT Technology in different vertical (KRA)
  • Silicon Valley’s land-grab capitalism comes to the ASX (AFR)
  • Bennett Coleman, India’s largest media conglomerate, is making rapid progress in building equity partnerships with foreign digital businesses, including arrangements with America’s Uber, Airbnb and Vice Media (Nikkei)
  • Vietnam e-commerce leader draws $51m pan-Asian investment; SBI, Daiwa and SoftBank participate in Sendo Technology funding (Nikkei)

Global Tech & Innovation Trends

  • We Still Don’t Know Whether Uber Is a Real Business: It has never had to live on the cash it generates. (Bloomberg) Is Uber Really Worth $62 Billion? (Barron’s)
  • Why Two of Europe’s $1 Billion Startups Just Had Their Valuations Cut (Bloomberg)
  • From blue lipstick to Facebook Live, home shopping networks refine their pitch (Reuters)
  • Meet the man who’s building Sonos’ audio internet (Wired)
  • A Decentralized Reputation System: How Blockchain Can Restore Trust In Online Markets (Forbes)
  • The Trade Desk is a global tech company that enables ad buyers to purchase and manage data-driven digital advertising campaigns through a self-service omnichannel software platform. (Barron’s)
  • Making Music Social: What Drives Streaming Revenues (Medium)


  • Lessons From Da Vinci on Work and Life. (Medium)
  • The Trajectory of Great Ideas (Morgan Housel)
  • How Companies Thrive by Making You Obsessed: Customer service is still king (Medium)
  • Claude Shannon: How a Genius Solves Problems (Medium)

About bambooinnovator
Kee Koon Boon (“KB”) is the co-founder and director of HERO Investment Management which provides specialized fund management and investment advisory services to the ARCHEA Asia HERO Innovators Fund (www.heroinnovator.com), the only Asian SMID-cap tech-focused fund in the industry. KB is an internationally featured investor rooted in the principles of value investing for over a decade as a fund manager and analyst in the Asian capital markets who started his career at a boutique hedge fund in Singapore where he was with the firm since 2002 and was also part of the core investment committee in significantly outperforming the index in the 10-year-plus-old flagship Asian fund. He was also the portfolio manager for Asia-Pacific equities at Korea’s largest mutual fund company. Prior to setting up the H.E.R.O. Innovators Fund, KB was the Chief Investment Officer & CEO of a Singapore Registered Fund Management Company (RFMC) where he is responsible for listed Asian equity investments. KB had taught accounting at the Singapore Management University (SMU) as a faculty member and also pioneered the 15-week course on Accounting Fraud in Asia as an official module at SMU. KB remains grateful and honored to be invited by Singapore’s financial regulator Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) to present to their top management team about implementing a world’s first fact-based forward-looking fraud detection framework to bring about benefits for the capital markets in Singapore and for the public and investment community. KB also served the community in sharing his insights in writing articles about value investing and corporate governance in the media that include Business Times, Straits Times, Jakarta Post, Manual of Ideas, Investopedia, TedXWallStreet. He had also presented in top investment, banking and finance conferences in America, Italy, Sydney, Cape Town, HK, China. He has trained CEOs, entrepreneurs, CFOs, management executives in business strategy & business model innovation in Singapore, HK and China.

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