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News  4, Sep 2012

Red Dot Ventures welcomes Zopim cofounder as Entrepreneur-in-Residence

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Julian Low, cofounder of live chat solution Zopim, joins Red Dot Ventures as Entrepreneur-in-Residence

Red Dot Ventures (RDV), one of the seed stage investment firm which was selected as a startup incubator under the Technology Incubation Scheme, is recently joined by Julian Low, the cofounder of Zopim. At Zopim, Julian was handling business development, sales, operations as well as being an active evangelist for the company. With the service now growing faster than ever, having recently launched Zopim 2.0 and servicing more than 45,000 clients worldwide, Julian has left the company in search for newer ventures. Together with Leslie Loh who has three investment exits under his belt, Julian will add valuable experience to the Red Dot Ventures team.

The departure from Zopim

Julian said in an email interview, “Building Zopim with the rest of my co-founders was definitely one the highlights of my life and leaving them was not an easy decision. As a team, we came to a mutually-beneficial arrangement for all parties involved and I am still a shareholder (and firm believer) in the company. However, a startup goes through many different phases in its growth and I guess I am more of a firestarter-kind of guy. I love the exciting phase of starting new companies and which is why being at Red Dot now is a natural fit for me. I’m really grateful for Leslie to allow me to learn so much from him. He’s the only friend I know in Singapore that has started, nurtured, listed and then sold a successful company (System Access) and even after three months on the job, I’m still learning.”

Zopim team hopes the best for Julian at Red Dot Ventures

Royston, one of the other cofounder at Zopim, hopes the best for Julian. “No departure is ever a smooth one, especially when it involves a founder who went through the toughest times with us, and is someone we still treat as a very close friend. That said, it was an amicable departure. There are professional reasons involved of course, but that is confidential and not something we feel the need to disclose. I think the ability for startups, and entrepreneurs to be able to compartmentalize personal emotions from professional decisions is really important. And I’m really proud that both Julian and ourselves achieved that, in reaching an arrangement that mutually benefitted both parties. We still hang out for drinks these days. It’s gratifying for us to hear that Julian is doing really well at Red Dot, and passionate about his ability to help many startups who were in the same position as we were when Zopim first started all those years back.”

Julian LowMain role at Red Dot Ventures

At Red Dot Ventures, Julian takes the role of an Entrepreneur-in-Residence. His job involves reviewing startup investment opportunities in a myriad of fields including Biotech, MedTech, Web, Mobile, E-commerce as well as working with local research institutes to commercialize new technologies and bring them to market. At Red Dot Ventures, the team is very hands-on and Julian will get to work with the startups that they have invested in and to do everything to help them grow and scale. “It’s like being in multiple startups at the same time and their energy is simply infectious. They are one of the prime reasons why I love working at Red Dot Ventures.”

Julian to bring extensive experience at Zopim to assist his role at Red Dot Ventures

When asked how would his experience at Zopim would help him in Red Dot Ventures, Julian replied confidently: “As someone who has roughed it out with the rest of my team at Zopim, I think I can say with much confidence that I can empathize with my fellow startup entrepreneurs with their struggles and fears. I know what it is like to go on a few hundred bucks a month while your peers are making tons more because you believe in a dream. I know what are the personal sacrifices an entrepreneur has to make just to stay in business and keep their dreams alive despite what their naysayers and critics say.”

Julian adds on by saying: “Being part of the team that grew Zopim also allows me to know what are the things a startup should focus on early in its growth phase, like hiring, customer acquisition and how they should spend their time. On the topic of time, I always tell the startups I meet that the real limiting factor for them is not money but time. Money can be earned or raised, but time once squandered cannot be retrieved. For the startups that pitch to us, you’ll have my assurance that we will do our utmost not to waste any of your time because I know how precious it is. All we hope for in return is that you repay the favor.”

Finally, Julian calls out for startups whom are looking for investment or just startup advises. “So if you are in the process of building an awesome company, please email us (contact[at]reddotventures.com) and tell us what you are passionate about as well as how we can help. I really look forward to having that conversation with you all.”

The team at e27 wishes Julian all the best at Red Dot Ventures and looks forward to sharing more news from him.

Featured Image Credits: Quarkbase

Jacky Yap

Jacky Yap

Having spent one year abroad in Shanghai under the NUS Overseas College Programme, Jacky has an avid interest in entrepreneurship and web based startups. Jacky used to run N-House, Singapore's first entrepreneurial themed residence in NUS, and was also part of the organizing team for Startup Weekend Singapore 2012. You can reach him at jacky [at] e27 [dot] co

  • boon kiat han

    whatever… I probably think that it’s better Zopim made something significant of itself – then to be another ‘so-so’ somewhat profitable outfit that dots the landscape

    my ignorant view
    but if you believe in it, make it something before you leave
    (I’ve seen early Zopim and frankly nothing much has improved)

    this is regardless of whether you have a more exciting option or understanding partners
    as such
    I harbour doubt any entrepreneur will benefit from your mentorship

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