“Alphacap in itself is an ecosystem,” explained Rayson Wong, the founder of the Malaysia-based tech startup incubator.
Alphacap was formally incorporated in July 2015. Since then, it has made tremendous strides towards attracting a total of 25 startups and companies to participate in its incubation and investment programmes.
“Personally, I have been in the tech business sector for about 14 years. Throughout those years, we faced two major challenges: the first one was funding and another one was resources in terms of knowledge, mentorship and network,” Rayson reflected.
Prior to founding Alphacap, Rayson founded and co-founded a series of IT companies, amongst them are game company Mediasoft, which eventually went on to become today’s largest game production company in Malaysia, and the first Malaysian company to become a Sony PS4 console game developer. To date, Mediasoft has accumulated a user base of more than 10 millions people globally.
There are a lot of startups with very good innovative ideas but lack the capacity and capability to bring their ideas to commercialisation and globalisation.
“It was not an easy journey,” Rayson continued, “However, over the years and through the growth of ourselves locally and internationally, we have accumulated a substantial amount of knowledge and network. We were also able to obtain incredible insights about the tech industry, especially in Asia.”
“In the meantime, amidst all this, we realised that there are a lot of startups with very good innovative ideas but lack the capacity and capability to bring their ideas to commercialisation and globalisation. They lack the means to bring their products to the world. These are wasted opportunities.”
“After much thought and careful consideration, we feel that we can come in to assist these startups by leveraging our experiences, knowledge, resources and network. We can use our existing ecosystem to help these startups,” said Rayson.
You Are Only as Good as Your Ecosystem
“That was the key leading to the establishment of Alphacap,” Rayson explained, “Essentially, Alphacap is an ecosystem player. We believe in the power of ecosystem.”
More often than not, people overlook ecosystem as a key factor contributing the success or failure of a startup. In today’s highly interconnected world, no one can exactly survive alone, and businesses depend greatly on each other to grow.
One good example of this symbiotic relationship would be of the e-commerce and the logistics industries. In Southeast Asia, e-commerce players are patiently waiting for the coming of a more comprehensive and efficient delivery infrastructure. Before which, e-commerce would not be able to truly realise it full potential.
However, this type of symbiotic relationships are non-exclusive and non-linear.
Going back to the example for e-commerce and logistics, both of these industries are also dependent on the adoption of online payment gateways. And then, all three aforementioned sectors are then relying on the penetration of internet and etc.
Beyond that, we need friendly regulations and a vibrant funding community to enable a robust entrepreneurial society.
“Strategically immersing yourself in an ecosystem where all actors of the industry come together can be highly beneficial in helping each other gain insight into market dynamics and discover potential opportunities for your business,” Rayson elaborated further.
On that note, Rayson stressed that “Alphacap aims to become one of the most comprehensive tech startup ecosystem in Southeast Asia by building on its existing foundation and expanding its reach to collaborate with more players in the industry.”
Many Ecosystems Within One Big Ecosystem
“Alongside our strategic coaching and mentorship programmes, we also run our own business angel network and a series of programmes to engage small and medium enterprise, corporates, the venture capital community and government agencies.”
“The idea is to build a vibrant ecosystem, where our startups, not only can they help and benefit each other, but a place where they are able to access resources — be it funding, talents or knowledge — easily,” Rayson said.
To date, Alphacap has 12 startups participating in its incubation programme. Amongst them are startups from high growth vertical such as logistics, virtual reality, artificial intelligence, fintech as well as marketplaces.
Strategically immersing yourself in an ecosystem where all actors of the industry come together can be highly beneficial in helping each other gain insight into market dynamics and discover potential opportunities for your business.
When you take a closer look into the Alphacap startups, you would realise that they are strongly interconnected. Here are a couple of examples. Property/fintech startup Wonderbucks and real estate legal tech startup Lepro are depending on each other to drive traction and adoption; Interior design tech startup Furmingo may be benefited from virtual reality startup Havson’s research and technologies in the future; and the list goes on.
Apart from that, Alphacap has also made strategic investments in 13 other companies, further strengthening its investment portfolio.
All these startups and companies, a part from aggressively focusing on building its own growth trajectories, also generously contributing and sharing resources with all members of the Alphacap ecosystem, thus pooling together for a larger, more comprehensive ecosystem.
As management expert Ken Blanchard puts it “none of us is as smart as all of us”. Alphacap is said to be founded upon this very idea of everyone contributing, working together and thus progressing together in more efficient and effective way.
Applying that concept, with the addition of each startup/company, the Alphacap ecosystem would naturally grow bigger and stronger.
Alphacap is actively engaging with relevant organisations/corporations across the world to drive more opportunities for its startups and stakeholders.
“It has been an exciting journey. We look forward to more collaborations and more good news to come,” concluded Rayson.