Launched 11 months ago, iCook allows anyone to easily share his or her food recipe into the online community. One can access these recipes through the online web app or through their mobile app. To date, iCook has more than 70,000 registered users, with more than 10,000 user generated food recipe on their platform.
According to CyberAgent ventures, the food recipe social sharing community is slowing getting the attention of main stream population. The reason for this is that there is a demand for food recipes. In Japan, there are similar proven business models that revolves around user generated food recipe platforms. CyberAgent Ventures believes that iCook.tw has strong potential to become the leading player in Taiwan and will take advantage of CyberAgent Inc’s wide network of resources to enhance the company’s growth and value. With the investment, funds will be used primarily to facilitate further growth of users and content.
According to an article by BNext (article in Chinese), founder Fox Hsiao shared that iCook modelled and studied closely how Japan based Cookpad reached its growth and popularity. The article also revealed that CyberAgent Ventures has been following the development of iCook closely since the last seven or eight months, and is impressed by its slick user interface as well as user generated content.
The investment is definitely a good sign for the local Taiwan startup community. Before that when we were in Taipei and interacted with a couple of startups based there, some of them revealed that they faced difficulties in raising fundings from venture capitalists. This funding by CyberAgent proves that funding follows where quality startups are, and is not limited geographically.
Based in Japan, CyberAgent Ventures is a venture capital firm with a US$36 million war chest to fund startups around the world. More so than most venture capitals, CyberAgent has an international focus, with offices across Asia, including, Beijing, Shanghai, Shenzhen, and Ho Chi Minh in addition to its headquarters in Tokyo. They also previously invested in lifestyle and restaurant portal iPeen and Taiwanese dating website iPartment.