Jaarvis Labs, a Hong Kong-based accelerator fund that typically backs O2O marketplaces has added two new ventures to their portfolio. Both startups announced a seed round of US$1 million from Jaarvis and a group of unnamed angel investors.
One is SpotHelp, a startup that provides on-demand concierge and personal assistant services, which handles a wide-range of chores and tasks requested via text, WhatsApp or Facebook messaging. The other, a gifting app called PRESSIE, where users can send gifts from a variety of Hong Kong merchants for in-store pick up.
Coincidentally, both startups’ seed round, launch and expansion plans are intertwined as they plan on running operations in Hong Kong with future moves into Singapore, Australia and India.
Jaarvis Labs Co-Founder and CEO Gabriel Fong explained to e27 that the funding amount is coincidental but they believe that US$1 million will provide the startups with “sufficient runway.” As for the markets SpotHelp and PRESSIE are looking to enter, Fong said that Jaarvis has presence in Singapore, Australia and India so they’ll be able to provide their companies with a soft landing.
The cash will be used for developing SpotHelp and PRESSIE’s platforms, hiring, as well as ramping up marketing efforts. As the startups are in similar development stages, Fong said they’ll be able to cut overhead costs and share resources as Jaarvis portfolio companies.
Fong was GoGoVan’s (Hong Kong’s successful ‘Uber for vans’ startup) executive chairman last year as well as the startup’s early angel investor. According to Co-founder and CEO Steven Lam, Fong was integral in GoGoVan’s growth during the early stages, mentoring the startup and opening up his business network. GoGoVan has raised US$26.5 million to date, with their Series B round led by the ‘Facebook of China’ RenRen.