H.E.R.O.’s Journey in Tech (25 October 2018) – At 34, Akiko Naka Gone From Goldman to Failed Artist to Startup Queen in Wantedly + Escaping the Two Foes of Happiness

H.E.R.O.’s Journey in Tech (25 October 2018) – At 34, Akiko Naka Gone From Goldman to Failed Artist to Startup Queen in Wantedly + Escaping the Two Foes of Happiness


  • At 34, Akiko Naka Gone From Goldman to Failed Artist to Startup Queen in Wantedly (Bloomberg)
  • China’s Top Selfie Touch-Up App Isn’t Looking So Pretty For Investors; This year, Meitu’s Hong Kong-listed shares have dropped more than 60% since hitting their peak in January, wiping out $4.4 billion in market capitalization. Investors appear to be increasingly disenchanted with Meitu’s future prospects, as the Xiamen-based company struggles to fend off rising competition and rein in mounting losses. (Forbes)
  • Chinese Automotive Marketplace TuanChe Files $150M US IPO (CMN)
  • Who dares wins: Catch or Kogan.com? (AFR)

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

  • Alibaba Used Shoppers’ Data to Invent a Spicy Snickers Bar; The e-commerce giant is vacuuming up data from people shopping, searching and sharing online and providing it to companies like Mars. (Bloomberg)
  • Alibaba vs. Amazon: The Battle Of Disruptive Innovation Beyond Traditional E-Commerce (Forbes)
  • China’s Pause on Videogame Approvals Expected to Drag Into Next Year; The halt, in place since March, is said to have cost companies such as Tencent and NetEase roughly $1.4 billion in lost revenue (WSJ)
  • Tencent teams up with ParknShop, Yonghui Superstores in latest bid to shake up China’s bricks-and-mortar retail market (SCMP)
  • Did Pony Ma just crowdsource Tencent’s future R&D direction? (SCMP)

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

  • Megacap FAANG Bloc Collapses as Growth Stocks Lead Sell-Off (Bloomberg)
  • The Problem with Facebook and Virtual Reality (Stratechery)
  • Facebook Ad Demand May Be Waning, and Analysts Are Worried (Barron’s)
  • Microsoft’s Cloud Strategy Pays Off; Even with deceleration, Azure’s growth remains robust as sales rise 76% in the fiscal first quarter (WSJ, Reuters)

Asia Tech & Innovation Trends

  • Stirring up the hornet’s nest, travel startup Mafengwo accused of copying reviews from rivals; Chinese travel website faces public scrutiny in the lead up to an imminent fundraising. (KRA)
  • Fujifilm Holdings will sell a Chinese plant that makes lenses for automotive cameras to smartphone industry supplier O-film Tech as competition squeezes profit margins in a field primed for growth (Nikkei)
  • Workers in Japan to be able to receive salaries via smartphones; Digital money options will make it easier to compensate foreign workers (Nikkei)
  • Dailyhunt: Betting on vernacular video; By harnessing the power of video on its app and using machine learning to serve personalised content, news aggregator Dailyhunt plans to touch 200 million users in 2020 (Forbes)
  • Uber Rival Grab Challenges China’s Tech Giants With Mastercard Deal; The ride-hailing firm is launching a new payment card after ousting Uber from Southeast Asia (WSJ)
  • Smartphones emerge as bright spot for Indian manufacturing (Reuters)

Global Tech & Innovation Trends

  • A fascinating interview with SingularityNET CEO Ben Goertzel; What is exponential impatience? And how can we teach robots empathy? (e27)
  • Does virtual reality need a dash of magic? ‘We’ve been waiting a long time for VR to enter everyday life’ (FT)
  • Investors Are Craving Food Delivery Companies; Runup in valuations is reminiscent of meal-kit bubble, some market watchers say (WSJ)
  • Artificial Intelligence Faces Age-Old IT Challenge: Data Standardization; ‘AI starts with data, and if the data is lousy … ‘ (WSJ)
  • Chip Stocks Extend Worst Rout in Decade as Slowdown Fears Mount (Bloomberg)
  • Algorithms to Boldly Go Where No Scientist Has Gone Before; Researchers tend to cluster and mine the same familiar territory. AI can overcome that tendency and point to new questions. (Bloomberg)
  • Lyft Acquires Blue Vision Labs To Elevate Its Moves In Self-Driving (Crunchbase)
  • Cloud Stocks Dip, Dragging SaaS Valuations Down (Crunchbase)
  • Goldman-Backed Travel Booking Start-Up GoEuro Is Said to Be Valued at Up to $1 Billion (Bloomberg)


  • Escaping the Two Foes of Happiness (DL)

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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