Echelon Thailand Bangkok SatelliteJudges at Echelon Thailand Bangkok Satellite. From left: Thaddeus Koh from e27; Thanapong Na Ranong, Intouch Group; Michael Waitze, Ardent Capital; Adrian Stewart, Galaxy Ventures; and Alan Hsu, GREE Ventures
Bangkok Satellite winnersGolfDigg, winners of Echelon Thailand Bangkok Satellite
Last Wednesday, the Pocket Playlab office in Bangkok played host to Echelon Thailand‘s next satellite event. Among all the satellite events, the Bangkok Satellite has most startups pitching, with over 20 of them showcasing their products to a panel of judges and an audience made up of players and enthusiasts from the Thai tech and startup scene.
The startups that pitched at the Bangkok Satellite included familiar names like Hipflat. There was a varied mix of startups pitching — some such as STYLHUNT focussed on e-commerce, and others like NewsTag and 500 Trendson curation.
The judging team comprised Asia-focussed venture capitalists and investors Michael Waitze from Ardent Capital, Galaxy Ventures’ Adrian Stewart, as well as Kuanhua Hsu from GREE Ventures. Intouch Group’s Thanapong Na Ranong and e27′s very own Co-founder, Thaddeus Koh, rounded off the panel.
GolfDigg scores a hole-in-one Winning both Bangkok Satellite and People’s choice prizes was GolfDigg, which had also won the best startup award for the Online and Digital Category at AIS The StartUp 2014. True to its name, GolfDigg is a last-minute booking app for golf courses, which according to Co-founder and COO Wichartbhol Surapolbhichet solves two problems: It helps golf courses reduce unsold time slots by offering them as last minute golf deals, and it lets golfers tailor their playing sessions, often allowing them to play at courses that would have exceeded their budget had they booked in advance normally.
Screenshot of GolfDigg
GolfDigg was soft launched back in March 2014, and currently offers deals from six golf courses on weekdays as well as on weekends, and boasts over 3000 downloads. While GolfDigg’s users and golf courses are mainly in the Bangkok area right now, Surapolbhichet shared that they have been steadily expanding to Hua Hin, Chiang Mai and other regions of Thailand.
Amid the pitching, Stewart had some advice for the startups: “Despite seeing a few good ideas and pitches, it was also rather apparent to me that some startups still do not have a full grasp of the crucial business fundamentals and the do’s and don’ts on how to pitch their ideas.” He added, “I’m sure attending the upcoming Echelon Thailand would help them improve in those areas.”