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Analyse Asia with Bernard Leong

Analyse Asia with Bernard Leong

Author: Carol Yin and Bernard Leong

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Analyse Asia with Bernard Leong is a weekly podcast dedicated to the pulse of technology, business and media in Asia. We interview thought leaders and leading industry players and gain their insights to how we perceive and understand the market.
347 Episodes
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Fresh out of the studio, Pradeep Parameswaran, President - Mobility from Uber APAC joined us in a conversation on Uber's continued focus on mobility in Asia Pacific and the future of mobility. We begin the conversation with Pradeep sharing his background and the key lessons learnt from his career journey. Following that, he dived deep into Uber's footprint in Asia Pacific excluding Southeast Asia and China and focus on the challenges and opportunities in expanding Uber's mission into new and uncharted areas. Last but not least, he also offered his thoughts on the future of mobility specifically on autonomous and electric vehicles and the likely impact to transportation in the near future for Asia Pacific.  
Fresh out of the studio, Jon Russell & Nadine Fresischlad from The Ken joined us to discuss the 40 billion Grab SPAC (and largest in the world till date) and its impact to the entire Southeast startup ecosystem. Kicking off the conversation, Jon and Nadine analysed why Grab decided to take the SPAC route, summarize the key takeaways from the current businesses to where future growth engines will come from. They discuss what it means for Uber, the investors, the employees, the startup and venture capital ecosystems across Southeast Asia. Last but not least, they examine what it means for their rivals competing in the Indonesia market: Goto and Sea Group. Podcast Information: RSS Feed Apple Podcasts Spotify Libsyn Google Play Overcast FM SoundCloud Luminary Twitter Facebook Video Facebook Page Linkedin Stitcher Castbox RadioPublic Acast PodBean ListenNotes TuneIn The show is hosted and produced by Carol Yin (@CarolYujiaYin) and originally created by Bernard Leong (@bernardleong, Linkedin). Sound credits for the intro music: Taro Iwashiro, "The Beginning" from Red Cliff Soundtrack.
Fresh out of the studio, in episode 341, Zhou Xin, political economy editor from South China Morning Post, joined us in a conversation to discuss the Two Sessions in China for the year 2021, and what it means for the rest of the world. Zhou Xin dived deep into the key agenda for the Two Sessions for 2021 and how the Chinese government will focus on in the next 5 years from technology development to boosting the small and medium businesses segment in China. We discuss the implications on how the Chinese economy impacts the rest of the world for the year ahead. Special offer for our readers: SCMP has kindly offered a one-month free discount for 1-year subscription plan to all listeners of Analyse Asia podcast. Go to https://sc.mp/Analyse-Asia and enter the promo code: ANALYSEASIA, T&Cs details available at sc.mp/promo-code. Podcast Information: RSS Feed Apple Podcasts Spotify Libsyn Google Play Overcast FM SoundCloud Luminary Twitter Facebook Video Facebook Page Linkedin Stitcher Castbox RadioPublic Acast PodBean ListenNotes TuneIn The show is hosted and produced by Carol Yin (@CarolYujiaYin) and originally created by Bernard Leong (@bernardleong, Linkedin). Sound credits for the intro music: Taro Iwashiro, "The Beginning" from Red Cliff Soundtrack.
Fresh out of the studio, in episode 340, Rama Mamuaya from DailySocial in Indonesia joined us to discuss a potential merger between Gojek, Indonesia's largest ride-hailing app and Tokopedia, the largest ecommerce site in Indonesia, and what it would mean for the most important market in Southeast Asia as well as their key rivals: Grab and SEA Group with Shopee. Rama introduced the backstory of Tokopedia, and discuss the dynamics on how Tokopedia and Gojek would merge under a SPAC backed by Peter Thiel and Richard Li. He provided the key reasons to why Grab and Gojek will not merge and offered his perspectives on how this will mean for the future of Indonesia startup scene.
Fresh out of the studio, in episode 339, John Artman, the technology editor of South China Morning Post (SCMP) joins us on a conversation with China AI Deep Dive: Computer Vision Report 2020 published by SCMP research. We began the conversation with John’s reflections on the year of 2020 during the pandemic and then dived deep into the report, where John provide a comprehensive overview of the computer vision market in China with the four dragons: SenseTime, Megvii, CloudWalk and Yitu and what the tech giants in China are focusing on in the same sector. John also discuss the implications of the US-China tensions as to how it impact the CV market and offered his thoughts on where the key players will focus on, given the impending regulatory measures introduced by the Chinese government on data privacy and anti-trust. Podcast Information: RSS Feed Apple Podcasts Himalaya Spotify Libsyn Google Play Overcast FM SoundCloud Luminary Twitter Facebook Video Facebook Page Linkedin Stitcher Castbox RadioPublic Acast PodBean ListenNotes TuneIn The show is hosted and produced by Carol Yin (@CarolYujiaYin) and originally created by Bernard Leong (@bernardleong, Linkedin). Sound credits for the intro music: Taro Iwashiro, “The Beginning” from Red Cliff Soundtrack.
Fresh out of the studio, in episode 338, Shai Oster, the Asia Bureau chief for The Information is back on his annual review with us again to discuss the state of China technology giants and SoftBank in the time of COVID-19 pandemic and predict what is to come in 2021. Starting the conversation, Shai reviewed the predictions he made in 2019 and explored the impact of COVID-19 pandemic on how they played out in 2020. From there, Shai reflected on the year that dominated the headlines in 2020: the diffusion of the China-US tensions to other regions: India and Australia against China tech giants, Tik Tok's problems in the US, Ant's botched IPO and SoftBank's attempt to go private. Last but not least, Shai offered his predictions for 2021 and what is to come for the Chinese technology giants and SoftBank for the year ahead. Here are the interesting show notes and links to the discussion: Shai Oster (@beijingscribe, LinkedIn, TheInformation Profile), Asia Bureau Chief in The Information  So since your last appearance on the show, what have you been up to? 2019 Predictions:  China & US: Trump’s impeachment China economy: growth  Tiktok will retreat from US, scale back & renew focus china, maybe India, Southeast Asia and Africa: accurate  Huawei  The shift of Chinese money to other markets 2020 Events that shook China and SoftBank: The China-US tensions have exacerbated and percolated to other regions now (and that includes Australia and India) to Chinese companies: 1/ India banning 47 apps including Wechat, Tik Tok and many apps from China and 2/ Australia and US banned Wechat. Let’s go to India first, given that the major unicorns are invested by Chinese tech giants, for example, PayTM by Alibaba, and the rise of local giants such as Reliance Jio backed by a strong US consortium: Facebook, Google, Silver Lake Partners, KKR, how do you see the challenges moving ahead for Xiaomi, which is dominant in India as well?  How do you think the Biden administration will handle the current tensions with China?  In the year ahead, do you think China will come down hard on US companies that are heavily invested here, like Apple or Starbucks Coffee? Currently, the Chinese government has directed the local companies to be self-reliant, and specifically in the semiconductor industry, does that mean that we will see the decoupling of the supply chain accelerate much quicker? Given that Tencent owns a few major gaming companies, for example, Epic, and with the recent lawsuit between Apple and Epic, do you see a possibility that the US government will pressure Tencent to divest their holdings in the US? Tik Tok’s problems in the US and elsewhere: First, Kevin Mayer, the former CEO of DisneyPlus was poached and then became the CEO of Tik Tok US and Group COO, and subsequently resigned in July 2020, given the Trump’s administration insistence that the company has to be sold. Finally, after talks with rumors that Microsoft might acquire the entity completely, the eventual decision is that Oracle becomes the beneficiary of being an investor (along with Walmart) for Tik Tok US to ensure that data resides in the US. What are your thoughts on Tik Tok’s current situation in the US?  Can ByteDance grow further given that there is so much pushback from other markets? Where do you see ByteDance’s growth markets are? Will be they turn inwards towards domestically or expand to other markets where the push back is lesser, for example, Southeast Asia? The Botched IPO of Ant Financial and what’s going to be next? The Chinese government has ended Ant Financial’s IPO with direct interference from President Xi as reported by various outlets. What are the causes in your opinion as to why the IPO ended up not happening? What are the implications for Alibaba Group as a whole with Ant Financial not able to IPO? What must Ant Financial do in order to convince the authorities to allow them to IPO?  The billion-dollar question: Will Ant Financial eventually IPO? A lot of people did not realize that the Ant Financial IPO has left a lot of money on the table in the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, do you think that the companies which are going to IPO in HKSE will benefit from this event?  Does this offer a lesson to how Chinese tech companies should conduct themselves? Which companies do you think might run into trouble with the state?  COVID-19 Pandemic:  Which tech companies in China are the major beneficiaries of the COVID-19 pandemic?  China has managed the COVID-19 pandemic much better than the US. What are the implications to the Chinese economy from now with the various successful vaccines, for example, Pfizer vaccine being approved?  SoftBank in 2020 and its current strategy to go private After the Wework debacle, SoftBank has gone on a few different directions: 1/ Selling their Alibaba stake, 2/ Sell ARM to NVDIA and Boston Dynamics to Hyundai, 3/ Ran a stock market gambit with futures in tech,  4/ DoorDash’s IPO giving them 10B gain that will write off Wework’s investment, and 5/ quietly buying back shares to go private? How do you assess SoftBank’s performance in 2020 and do you think that with DoorDash’s success, will SoftBank Vision Fund 2 happen? Has SoftBank’s enormous influence on the tech industry waned after WeWork’s debacle? Where do you think that they will spend the remainder of the $100B Vision Fund on? Do you think that SoftBank will go private according to Tim Culpan’s analysis on Masa’s strategy? Do you think that SoftBank will manoeuvre and make a comeback after being private?   2020 is now closing to the end, what are your predictions for 2021 so that we can have a future conversation a year from now? Closing Any recommendations?  Shai's recommendations: Rui Ma and Ying Ying Lu, Techbuzz China podcast and subscribe to The Information with the key breaking news it broke in 2020. How does our audience find you? Editor's note: Our team in Analyse Asia thanked our audience for your support and wished everyone a Happy New Year 2021. The episode is recorded in the last week of 2020. Podcast Information: RSS Feed Apple Podcasts Himalaya Spotify Libsyn Google Play Overcast FM SoundCloud Luminary Twitter Facebook Video Facebook Page Linkedin Stitcher Castbox RadioPublic Acast PodBean ListenNotes TuneIn The show is hosted and produced by Carol Yin (@CarolYujiaYin) and originally created by Bernard Leong (@bernardleong, Linkedin). Sound credits for the intro music: Taro Iwashiro, "The Beginning" from Red Cliff Soundtrack. analyseasia · Reflections and Predictions on China and SoftBank in 2020 with Shai Oster
In episode 337, Rui Ma from TechBuzz China podcast joined us in a conversation to break down what just happened to Ant Group's IPO and why it was halted at the eleven hour by the Chinese government. At the start of the conversation, Rui Ma shared the back story and explained how Ant Financial have built their business from the escrow and payments app to now a vast financial business with lending and investment services included. Last but not least, Rui Ma dived deep into the regulatory landscape and offered the different scenarios to when Ant Group might be able to IPO in the future. Here are the interesting show notes and links to the discussion: Rui Ma, Creator & Host of Tech Buzz China podcast by Pandaily produced by SupChina (LinkedIn, @ruima) Since our last conversation in April 2020, what have you been up to?  Ant Group and why China slams the brakes on their IPO Before we start talking about the IPO, let’s understand the company a little bit more. Can you talk about how Ant Group was initially started as Alipay by Jack Ma and then became Ant Financial? I believe there was a huge controversy about the founding of Alipay as well right? What is the current ownership of Ant Group like and who are the key stakeholders?  Can you talk about the many branches of business that they offer and how these businesses are structured? For example, the lending & investment business? Alipay is just one of the different products which sits within Ant Group. There are other products, for example, Zhima Credit, Huabei, Jiebei, MYBank, Ant Insurance, etc. Can you talk about how these products are organized by the different businesses within Ant Financial? Ant Financial changed their name to Ant Group in June 2020 wanting to stress that they’re not just a finance company but a tech company. Why do you think they wanted to shift away from this kind of branding and do you believe in this rhetoric? How has Ant Financial worked within the regulatory landscape in the financial services sector in China? But as we all know, one day after the US Elections on Nov 4, the Chinese government halted the IPO. What happened and what is the current status of Ant IPO?  If the Ant IPO did take place, what would have been the prospects of growth for the company? What are the implications of Ant Financial’s botched IPO towards the Alibaba Group?  Do you think that they will be going public in the next half a year or beyond? Closing Can you recommend something that has inspired you recently? Rui Ma's recommendation: Esther Perels, Where Should We Begin podcast Where can my audience find you?  Podcast Information: RSS Feed Apple Podcasts Himalaya Spotify Libsyn Google Play Overcast FM SoundCloud Luminary Twitter Facebook Video Facebook Page Linkedin Stitcher Castbox RadioPublic Acast PodBean ListenNotes TuneIn The show is hosted and produced by Carol Yin (@CarolYujiaYin) and originally created by Bernard Leong (@bernardleong, Linkedin). Sound credits for the intro music: Taro Iwashiro, "The Beginning" from Red Cliff Soundtrack. analyseasia · The Ant Group's Botched IPO with Rui Ma
In episode 336, Eugene Tang, business editor from the South China Morning Post (SCMP) joined us to discuss the China Fintech Report 2020 where he dissect the latest important trends in the fintech market. Eugene started the conversation with a story of his career and interesting learnings in his journey. From there, he dived into the key themes of the China Fintech Report 2020, from explaining how the fintech space in China are currently dominated by the tech giants in China, the impact of AI in the industry and most important, what the new digital cryptocurrency launched by China would mean for its domestic economy and the rest of the world. Here are the interesting show notes and links to the discussion: Eugene Tang (LinkedIn), Business Editor, South China Morning Post (or SCMP in short) What is your current role and responsibilities as the business editor for South China Morning Post?  How did you get started in your career?  In your career journey, what are the key learnings you can share with our audience? China Fintech Report 2020 by SCMP (Promo Code for 20% off: ANALYSEASIA) What are the key themes for the China Fintech Report 2020?  What is the intended audience for the report? Let’s start with the key observations, in the report, the tech giants in China for example, Alibaba Group, Tencent and Baidu and JD and Ping An are currently leading in the fintech race. Can you explain how these companies have built their digital only banks and help to broaden economic development with micro loans to customers and extending credit to SMEs?  What are the underlying technologies in China Fintech that have helped to propel their advances in the past few years, for example in the payments space? How do you see artificial intelligence (AI) influence fintech growth? Can you provide any examples that are stated in the report (for example MYBank and Daokou Fintech)? Global expansion for Chinese fintechs has been ongoing in the recent years. Can you expand on how fintech in China can help different parts of the world, specifically in broadening financial inclusion? Can you discuss the state of blockchain technology in China and the vision for China to establish the first central bank issued digital currency? What are the implications for the Chinese economy as of when and if the digital currency is launched? What are the regulatory shifts for Chinese fintechs?  What are the new rules in play that will change the landscape in the next year? Recently, the Ant IPO has been delayed because of the clash with the financial regulatory body in China. Can you offer your perspectives on the issue?  What will be the key challenges for Chinese Fintech in the year ahead?  Closing Can you recommend a book, movie, podcast or anything which have inspired you recently? Eugene's recommendation: Investigation of Competition in Digital Markets by US Congress How can your audience find you? Editor's Note: SCMP has kindly offered a 20% discount for the China Fintech Report 2020 to all listeners of Analyse Asia podcast and please click on this link and enter the promo code: ANALYSEASIA Podcast Information: RSS Feed Apple Podcasts Himalaya Spotify Libsyn Google Play Overcast FM SoundCloud Luminary Twitter Facebook Video Facebook Page Linkedin Stitcher Castbox RadioPublic Acast PodBean ListenNotes TuneIn The show is hosted and produced by Carol Yin (@CarolYujiaYin) and originally created by Bernard Leong (@bernardleong, Linkedin). Sound credits for the intro music: Taro Iwashiro, "The Beginning" from Red Cliff Soundtrack. analyseasia · The SCMP China Fintech Report 2020 with Eugene Tang
In episode 335, Stephanie Davis, Vice President of Google Southeast Asia, joined us in a discussion on the latest e-Conomy Southeast Asia (SEA) report and dissect the latest digital trends and discuss how the different industries are moving under the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. Stephanie started on the key themes, takeaways and intended audience for the report and broke down the key verticals which have benefitted during the COVID-19 pandemic and which industries have faced the strongest headwinds, for example travel. Last but not least, Stephanie offered an optimistic outlook to what 2021 will look life given the uncertainty ahead. Here are the interesting show notes and links to the discussion: Stephanie Davis, Vice President, Google Southeast Asia (LinkedIn) What is your current role and responsibility in Google?  How did you start your career and end up in Singapore? In your career journey, what are the key learnings you can share with our audience here? e-Conomy Southeast Asia (SEA) 2020 by Google, Temasek and Bain & Company This is the 5th year of the e-Conomy report, and it is assembled by Google, Temasek (Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund and a key investor to many startup unicorns from China to Silicon Valley) and Bain & Co (one of the well-known consulting firms). To start the conversation, what are the key themes from the e-Conomy 2020 report this year? Who are the intended audience of the 2020 report? Southeast Asia has often been touted as the next geographical region after China and India. In 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic has dominated the headlines of every nation in the world, and has acted as a catalyst to digital growth & transformation. How has COVID-19 pushed the population of Southeast Asia to come online or accelerated this process, and where is this new growth coming from? What are the three key verticals which have benefited from the COVID-19 pandemic?  Given that most of the world is still caught in a lockdown, you’re probably WFH as well, what is both the quantity and quality for digital engagement of users in the Southeast Asia region? Has the economic growth in Southeast Asia slowed down? Which countries within Southeast Asia have shown growth and which ones have slowed down? Can you talk about how ecommerce has thrived this year and what kind of headwinds do you see in the coming year?  As more people go digital in the years to come, we see that fintech, entertainment and gaming will continue to grow, where do you see the behaviour and activity of different stakeholders such as consumers, businesses, and regulators within this ecosystem? One of the sectors that is gravely affected this year is, of course, the travel industry. Where do you see the signs of recovery?  The Chinese word for crisis consists of 2 characters that mean danger and opportunity, and as Einstein has once said, “In the midst of every opportunity, lies great opportunity.” So what are the two verticals that have emerged this year?  Temasek is a co-publisher of the report, they’re Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund and a key investor of many startups from China to Silicon Valley, so how do you see the startup space evolving with regards to deal activity, diversification of portfolios by investors from private equity to venture capital?  What is the outlook for businesses in the year ahead? Should we be optimistic given that the pandemic has both accelerated digital transformation but also shut down many businesses at the same time? Closing Do you have any recommendations (for example, books, podcasts, videos or articles) which you can recommend to our audience? Stephanie's recommendations: Podcasts 1/ Mental Health, Disability and the Invisible 9%, 2/ How Authority and Decision Making differs across Cultures, 3/ Transgender Inclusion; Books: How to be an anti-racist by Ibram X. Kendi How do my audience find you?  Podcast Information: RSS Feed Apple Podcasts Himalaya Spotify Libsyn Google Play Overcast FM SoundCloud Luminary Twitter Facebook Video Facebook Page Linkedin Stitcher Castbox RadioPublic Acast PodBean ListenNotes TuneIn The show is hosted and produced by Carol Yin (@CarolYujiaYin) and originally created by Bernard Leong (@bernardleong, Linkedin). Sound credits for the intro music: Taro Iwashiro, "The Beginning" from Red Cliff Soundtrack. analyseasia · The Google e-Conomy Southeast Asia 2020 Report with Stephanie Davis
In episode 334, Matthew Brennan returned to discuss his new book "Attention Factory: The Story of Tik Tok & China's ByteDance". Matthew began with the inspiration and the key themes behind the first English book specifically focused on ByteDance, observing the rise of the company. He discuss the backstory of Zhang Yiming, founder of ByteDance and how he learned from his past experiences to build Toutiao first before embarking on Douyin that eventually led to Tik Tok. Last but not least, Matthew debunked the common misconceptions on Tik Tok and ByteDance, explained how their business models work and offered a glimpse to the challenges ahead for the company in the near future. Here are the interesting show notes and links to the discussion: Matthew Brennan, Co-founder of China Channel and author of “ (chinachannel.co, @mbrennanchina , Linkedin, Wechat:Yowdy-CQ) As the highest recurring guest on the podcast, it’s great to welcome you back. First question: what have you been up to since our last conversation? “Attention Factory - The Story of Tik Tok and China’s ByteDance” by Matthew Brennan What is the inspiration behind writing this book? What are the key themes for this book? Who are the major audiences that you want to target in this book? Tik Tok and ByteDance are often characterized by Western commentators and media as a threat to Facebook, Twitter and even to the US government itself. What are the key misconceptions about Tik Tok and ByteDance?  Probably this is the first book which dives in depth into the background of Zhang Yiming, the founder of Bytedance, and the surprise is that he used to work for China’s twitter clone, Fanfou (started by Wang Xing, now founder and CEO of Meituan-Dianping) and was shut down by the authorities. Can you elaborate more on his background and his stint as a CEO with another startup called 99Fang before coming to ByteDance? What has 99Fang taught Zhang Yiming in the process? After he resigned from 99Fang, he started ByteDance and it was not with Tik Tok that he started his foray. He did Toutiao, can you talk about the design concepts and what Toutiao taught the ByteDance team? One can think of the success of Tik Tok in three stages: Douyin in China, acquisition of Musical.ly and then expanding globally across the decade of 2010 to 2020. Let’s start with Douyin first, how did the app cross the chasm to drive users? Tencent has tried to challenge Douyin on the homeground with Weishi, what did they get wrong and why have they failed to challenge Tik Tok?  What are the key business models for Tik Tok and Douyin from ByteDance? How does the app bring revenues to the company? How are the apps localized or globalized to ensure a better user experience?  There are different ways to look at Tik Tok. One interesting insight was from Eugene Wei’s recent article “Tik Tok and the Sorting Hat”, where Tik Tok does not need the social graph but rather rely on the recommendation engine algorithm to push the interests of the user, which makes Tik Tok a more direct competitor to Youtube. What are your thoughts on how one should think of Tik Tok as a mobile app or social network or video network? Probably, we should talk about what happened to Tik Tok in the US this year. They have hired Kevin Mayer, former head of Disney+ and then Donald Trump threatened to shut them down, and first there was supposed to be an acquisition from Microsoft, but ended up with Oracle and Walmart clinching a partnership deal. Can you share your thoughts on what happened and where this is likely to go before & after the US elections? What are the key challenges you see for ByteDance in the coming year? Closing Do you have any recommendations that have recently inspired you? Where can our audience find you and your new book “Attention Factory”? Podcast Information: RSS Feed Apple Podcasts Himalaya Spotify Libsyn Google Play Overcast FM SoundCloud Luminary Twitter Facebook Video Facebook Page Linkedin Stitcher Castbox RadioPublic Acast PodBean ListenNotes TuneIn The show is hosted and produced by Carol Yin (@CarolYujiaYin) and originally created by Bernard Leong (@bernardleong, Linkedin). Sound credits for the intro music: Taro Iwashiro, "The Beginning" from Red Cliff Soundtrack. analyseasia · Attention Factory: The Story of Tik Tok & China’s ByteDance with Matthew Brennan
In Episode 333, Nadine Freischlad, writer from The Ken, joined us in a conversation on the influence of both US and Chinese tech giants in the third most important market in Asia Pacific: Indonesia, the secondary exits spanned by venture capitalists and founders in Southeast Asia and the story of Kopi Kenangan in Indonesia. We began the story with Nadine's journey from startups to The Ken, and why Indonesia is an interesting and hot market after India and China. We discuss the influence of tech giants from US and China in Indonesia and how Google has fired the first salvo with bringing their cloud platform in Jakarta. Following on, Nadine explained why venture capitalists in Southeast Asia are exiting in secondary markets. Last but not least, she discuss why Kopi Kenangan in Indonesia will not follow in the footsteps of Luckin Coffee. Here are the interesting show notes and links to the discussion: Nadine Freischlad, Writer, The Ken (@nfreischlad, LinkedIn, The Ken Profile, newsletter) How did you start your career?  What brought you to Asia and eventually to write for The Ken?  Why are you in Indonesia and why is Indonesia the most interesting market in Southeast Asia? Influence of US & China Tech Giants in Indonesia Reference: “Google’s Kormo, AI Hurdles & Indonesia’s job recruitment nightmare”, “Google fires first volley in Indonesia’s cloud wars” and “Facebook, Paypal’s payments play a super app-ortunity for Gojek” Can you describe how the US tech giants, for example, Google, Facebook and Paypal,  have built their influence in Indonesia?  Google has recently launched a job recruitment site called Kormo in Indonesia, can you explain why that came about and what Google wants to achieve out of Kormo? In terms of cloud infrastructure, Google is the first to enter the market before Amazon and Microsoft, does it hurt local hosting providers?  Facebook and Paypal have invested in Gojek (along with Google and Tencent), how does that supercharge Gojek’s ambitions to be a super app in their war against Grab? While the US tech giants have invested into Indonesia’s top unicorns, what are the Chinese tech giants doing in Indonesia? Given the recent pushback from India and US on Tik Tok, will the Indonesian government follow suit with the influence of chinese apps in Indonesia?  Secondary market for Southeast Asia startups Reference: Southeast Asia’s startups surf a secondary wave Given the number of exits from startups are few and far between in Southeast Asia, how are investors justifying their returns to the LPs (limited partners)? We do not see a lot of IPOs in Southeast Asia. Can you talk about how VCs managed to generate liquidity by secondary shares sales and elaborate how the secondary share sales work? Are there platforms where the secondary shares sales can be transacted between investors, employees and founders of the startup?  Are there sources of friction generated between founders of startups & their investors (VCs, PE firms) on the secondary sales shares given that it will disrupt the capitalization table (or cap table in short) of the company? Do you see secondary shares sales as an important mechanism for VCs and PE firms to generate liquidity? Is this similar to how Silicon Valley VCs and angel investors sold their shares to SoftBank two years back?   Kopi Kenangan in Indonesia Reference: “Kopi Kenangan wants to walk in Luckin’s path, not in its shoes” Can you briefly describe the company Kopi Kenangan in Indonesia?  Indonesia is a coffee country most well known for the javanese coffee beans, how is the coffee culture in Indonesia and how does it help Kopi Kenangan to reach its customers? How has Kopi Kenangan as a business scaled up in the recent year for example, their number of retail outlets and customer reach? Are they having any issues of massive burn? Can you explain the unit economics of Kopi Kenangan in Indonesia and contrast this with Luckin Coffee in China? (Refer to Part 2 of The Anonymous Report on Luckin Coffee’s flawed unit economics)  In your perspective, what makes Kopi Kenangan able to move away from the shadow of Luckin Coffee given the latter’s recent scandal? Closing Can you recommend your book, podcast and something which has recently inspired your life? How can my audience find you? Editor's Note: Our apologies as there were some issues during the recording on Nadine's end. Hence you will hear a little background noise towards near the end during the Kopi Kenangan part of the conversation. We will hope to improve our recording with our guests in the future Podcast Information: RSS Feed Apple Podcasts Himalaya Spotify Libsyn Google Play Overcast FM SoundCloud Luminary Twitter Facebook Video Facebook Page Linkedin Stitcher Castbox RadioPublic Acast PodBean ListenNotes TuneIn The show is hosted and produced by Carol Yin (@CarolYujiaYin) and originally created by Bernard Leong (@bernardleong, Linkedin). Sound credits for the intro music: Taro Iwashiro, "The Beginning" from Red Cliff Soundtrack. analyseasia · Tech Giants, Secondary Exits & Kopi Kenangan in Indonesia with Nadine Freischlad
In episode 332, continuing our last conversation with Benedict Evans, we discuss the major topics that are dominating the global technology landscape. First, Benedict dissect the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and explain how the forced experiments will shift the immediate future where we work and interact with each other. Moving forward, he discuss what lies beyond the smartphone, specifically touching on VR and AR and analyzed why other technologies such as AI and blockchain are lurking in the background. Finally, he offers his perspectives on our expectations on technology with the dawn of 5G. Here are the interesting show notes and links to the discussion: Benedict Evans (@benedictevans , LinkedIn, Personal Site, Essays, Newsletter), Venture Partner of Mosaic Ventures & Entrepreneur First & Independent Analyst COVID 19's Forced Experiments Reference: COVID and forced experiments, Presentations: Tech and the New Normal & Tech in 2020: Standing on the shoulders of giants and What comes after Zoom?.  The COVID 19 have accelerated digital transformation in the past three months more than the last 5 years for certain industries. What are the forced experiments which COVID-19 can help us to understand the evolution of technology, for example, Zoom for video conferencing and what it has and has not solved for us?  Beyond the Smartphone Reference: Should you care about the 5G? Where is the smartphone in the S-curve: the beginning, the middle or the late stage? If we slice and dice the other platforms in the horizon: IoT (or ambient computing), VR or AR, they don’t seem to show the scale that smartphones can extend in terms of their adjacencies. What are the signs that you will identify to show that the smartphone platform is in the decline? What do you think that the contribution of 5G is to the entire telecommunications industry?  Closing Do you have anything from book, article, movie or podcast to recommend to our audience that have inspired you recently? Benedict's recommendation: History of Germany economy in the 1930s-1940s. How can our audience find you? Podcast Information: RSS Feed Apple Podcasts Himalaya Spotify Libsyn Google Play Overcast FM SoundCloud Luminary Twitter Facebook Video Facebook Page Linkedin Stitcher Castbox RadioPublic Acast PodBean ListenNotes TuneIn The show is hosted and produced by Carol Yin (@CarolYujiaYin) and originally created by Bernard Leong (@bernardleong, Linkedin). Sound credits for the intro music: Taro Iwashiro, "The Beginning" from Red Cliff Soundtrack. analyseasia · Beyond the Smartphone & COVID-19's Forced Experiments with Benedict Evans
In episode 331, Benedict Evans, the independent analyst and venture partner from Mosaic Ventures & Entrepreneur First, joined us in the first of the two episodes to discuss the major topics that are dominating the global technology landscape. We began the conversation with his recent stint with Andreessen Horowitz (a16z) in Silicon Valley and the key takeaways during his stay there. Then we dived deep into  the key topics which dominate the global technology landscape: tech regulation of the major Internet giants, the app store conversation featuring Fornite vs Apple and the decoupling of the global supply chain with China and India. Here are the interesting show notes and links to the discussion: Benedict Evans (@benedictevans , LinkedIn, Personal Site, Essays, Newsletter), Venture Partner of Mosaic Ventures & Entrepreneur First & Independent Analyst When we had the first conversation with you, you were a partner in the renowned Silicon Valley venture capital firm, Andreessen Horowitz, the first question for us, what are the key takeaways thinking about technology from the lens of a venture capitalist in Silicon Valley? Since you have moved back to the United Kingdom, what have you been up to? Tech Regulation and App Stores Reference: Regulating Technology , Would breaking up big tech work? What would? and App Stores, Trust & Anti Trust Let’s start with the recent movement in the US by the Congress to call for the break up of the four major tech companies: Google, Facebook, Amazon and Apple and potentially restricting their M&A activity. We have the leaders of these four tech companies brought before the Congressional hearings.  From looking at the hearings, what does the regulators get right and wrong about big technology companies and insist that the only way is to ‘break them up’? Can we learn from history on how we should think about breaking up big technology companies? For example drawing on what they did to Standard Oil during the gilded age in the 1900s in the U.S.?  The decoupling of global supply chains Currently, China’s market is 3x times larger than the US. The Indian market is teaming up with US companies to move their supply chain out from China to India, for example, Apple. Will the Chinese and Indian Internet outsize the US market so that it is no longer the axis of innovation and technology growth in the next few decades? Do you think that the future of the Internet is going to be “balkanized”: China, India, Europe, US and the rest of the world?  Will the decoupling of supply chains between China and the US change the way the technology sector will evolve in the next few decades? Podcast Information: RSS Feed Apple Podcasts Himalaya Spotify Libsyn Google Play Overcast FM SoundCloud Luminary Twitter Facebook Video Facebook Page Linkedin Stitcher Castbox RadioPublic Acast PodBean ListenNotes TuneIn The show is hosted and produced by Carol Yin (@CarolYujiaYin) and originally created by Bernard Leong (@bernardleong, Linkedin). Sound credits for the intro music: Taro Iwashiro, "The Beginning" from Red Cliff Soundtrack. analyseasia · Technology Regulation, App Store & Global Decoupling with Benedict Evans
In episode 330, Gareth Nicholson, deputy technology editor on the technology desk from South China Morning Post (SCMP), joined us to discuss the China Internet Report 2020 and its impact to the rest of the world. We discuss the key major trends: the impact of COVID-19 on China tech and how it transform food delivery, the accelerated self-reliance of Chinese companies due to the US and China tensions, the year of 5G for mass adoption in the Chinese domestic market, live streaming and ecommerce, and finally, why the Chinese companies are now moving their US listings back to China. Last but not least, Gareth shared the key trends that he will watch out for in 2021. Here are the interesting show notes and links to the discussion: Gareth Nicholson, deputy Technology Editor on the Technology desk, South China Morning Post. Since our last conversation, what have you been up to? China Internet Report 2020 by South China Morning Post Now let’s talk about the report. It’s SCMP’s 3rd annual report, what are some of the key sections and themes that the China Internet report has always focused on? As we understand that SCMP has been delivering the China Internet Report every year since 2016, what are the key themes which the report have discussed every year till now? I love how the report starts off with ‘China in a glance’ which provides readers with a general background of the Chinese internet space. The graphic comparisons for the China vs US internet landscapes are helpful. For example, I didn’t know that China has about 3 times the number of internet users at 904M in comparison to US’s almost 300 million (298M). Can you provide us a snapshot on how the Chinese Internet is now compared with respect to the US? Who are now the key players within the Chinese tech ecosystem, as we notice that Baidu has dropped down to number 11?  Trend #1: Impact of COVID-19 to China Tech Sector What is the impact of COVID-19 on China’s tech sector?  How did the Ministry of Industry & Information Technology in China respond to COVID-19 pandemic? with plans along the 5 themes: building a strong infrastructure network, applying digital technology in all sectors, enhancing data security, strengthening tech innovation and optimizing broader industry development? Trend #2: China Accelerated Self-Reliance on Tech With the ongoing tension escalating between the US and China, how is China doing on the path of becoming technologically self-reliant? What are some of China’s major challenges? What is the impact of this move to self-reliance for Huawei and other Chinese companies? Where are the competencies that Chinese tech firms will need to develop to bridge the gap between them and the US? Trend #3: The year of mass adoption for 5G Is this the year for mass adoption for 5G? What will be the impact of 5G for Chinese tech in the next two to three years? Trend #4: Live Streaming's 3rd Phase in China What are the 3 phases of livestream in China and what’s after the 3rd phase? Trend #5: China companies listing back at home (Hong Kong and Shanghai) We are seeing a lot of Chinese companies looking to list in HK or Shanghai. Do you see this a part of the great trend due to the tensions between the US and China?  At the same time, we see accounting scandals for example, Luckin Coffee and TAL education and this leads to more scrutiny to Chinese companies, do you think that more and more chinese companies will delist from the US and move back to China? What topics are covered in the pro-report as compared from the free report? Closing How do our audience find you? Podcast Information: RSS Feed Apple Podcasts Himalaya Spotify Libsyn Google Play Overcast FM SoundCloud Luminary Twitter Facebook Video Facebook Page Linkedin Stitcher Castbox RadioPublic Acast PodBean ListenNotes TuneIn The show is hosted and produced by Carol Yin (@CarolYujiaYin) and originally created by Bernard Leong (@bernardleong, Linkedin). Sound credits for the intro music: Taro Iwashiro, "The Beginning" from Red Cliff Soundtrack. analyseasia · China Internet Report 2020 with Gareth Nicholson
In episode 329, Jon Russell, editor of The Ken Southeast Asia, joined us in a conversation to discuss the continuing epic rivalry between Gojek and Grab in the era of COVID-19 pandemic. Starting from the perspective of Gojek, we discuss the impact and changes made after the founder's departure and how they are re-organizing to tackle Grab's onslaught in Indonesia and expanding out to other parts of Southeast Asia from Indonesia. With new investments from US tech giants, Facebook and Paypal, we discuss how Gojek is shaping itself to be a worthy rival against Grab backed by SoftBank and Alibaba in Southeast Asia. Last but not least, Jon discuss why the media streaming giants of Southeast Asia, HOOQ & iFlix failed to take on Netflix and the key takeaways for unicorn start-ups in the era of COVID-19 pandemic. Here are the interesting show notes and links to the discussion: Jon Russell (@jonrussell, LinkedIn, Newsletter, Personal Site, The Ken Profile) Since we have last spoken, you have moved out of TechCrunch and now joined The Ken. Can you talk about The Ken and what is your new role there? Grab vs Gojek in 2020 Let’s start from Gojek, a lot of things have happened. Their founder and former CEO, Nadiem Makarim has left the company and become a Minister of Education & Culture under President Jokowi’s cabinet in Indonesia. What’s the impact on Gojek after his departure? (Ref: Up for Grab? Gojek after Nadiem Makarim) They have started the expansion to Southeast Asia last year but it has not grown very well. (Ref: Gojek’s stunted SE Asia expansion story), can you talk about their challenges in expanding out of Indonesia while dealing with Grab who is competing in their backyard? That being said, they have been doing well on the fundraising front: Gojek has been invested by Facebook and Paypal (Source: CNBC).  What are the implications to Gojek as Google, Paypal and Facebook are lining up against Grab? (Ref: Facebook, PayPal’s payments play a super app-ortunity for Gojek) The US tech giants are in Indonesia just as the Chinese tech giants, for example, Meituan-Dianping which is a super app entering the market. What can Gojek and Grab learn from Meituan-Dianping? (Ref: The Gojek-Grab SE Asia super app battle with a Meituan twist) What is the impact of COVID-19 on Grab and Gojek? Both Gojek and Grab have done layoffs in the past month. How do you look at the approaches from both companies? (Grab CEO’s memo, Gojek’s layoffs) SoftBank has been taking a hit from Wework and Oyo. What is the downstream impact to Grab based on the current troubles in the Vision Fund? Is the race to dominate Southeast Asia going down to whether Grab or Gojek wins Indonesia and not the other countries (Vietnam, Thailand, Philippines and Malaysia, Singapore)?  What will the key battleground for Grab and Gojek in the coming 2021?  Impact of COVID-19 to Southeast Asia  You have written a lot of media streaming companies similar to Netflix, for example HOOQ from Singapore and iFlix from Malaysia. The COVID-19 pandemic have led to HOOQ being shut down and iFlix being acquired from Tencent. What are the key learnings from HOOQ’s downfall and iFlix’s acquisition?  What are the key takeaways from the COVID pandemic for Southeast Asia? (Ref: 7 takeaways from Covid-time digital winners and losers in Southeast Asia) Closing Can you recommend a book or movie or podcast or anything which recently made an impact to your work and personal life? Jon's recommendation: Sarah Frier, "No Filter: The Inside Story of Instagram" How do my audience find you?  Podcast Information: RSS Feed Apple Podcasts Himalaya Spotify Libsyn Google Play Overcast FM SoundCloud Luminary Twitter Facebook Video Facebook Page Linkedin Stitcher Castbox RadioPublic Acast PodBean ListenNotes TuneIn The show is hosted and produced by Carol Yin (@CarolYujiaYin) and originally created by Bernard Leong (@bernardleong, Linkedin). Sound credits for the intro music: Taro Iwashiro, "The Beginning" from Red Cliff Soundtrack. analyseasia · Gojek vs Grab in Southeast Asia 2020 Edition with Jon Russell
In episode 328, Lim Xinyi, senior director for corporate development from Pinduoduo, joined us to discuss the social ecommerce company and its impact on agriculture. Starting from the conversation, Xinyi shared her background and how she came to discover and eventually join Pinduoduo. She discuss Pinduoduo's current mission and vision and how the company pioneered social ecommerce in China. Last but not least she shared Pinduoduo's contributions to the agriculture sector in China and how they are helping farmers to get their agricultural produce to the consumers during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Here are the interesting show notes and links to the discussion (with time-stamps included): Lim Xinyi (LinkedIn), Senior Director, Corporate Development at Pinduoduo (@PinduoduoInc, LinkedIn, Medium) How did you start your career? In your career journey, what are the interesting career lessons you can share with our audience. Pinduoduo’s Social E-Commerce Model and its impact in agriculture  Can you briefly introduce us to your company Pinduoduo in China and its mission and vision?  How do you explain Pinduoduo as a social e-commerce company to the audience out there?  Before Pinduoduo came into the scene in 2015, the ecommerce industry led by Alibaba and Jingdong (JD) generated a combined revenue of $433B gross merchandise value (GMV), and within 5 years, it skyrocketed from a startup to 57B company with buying base of 585M generating $144B of GMV (reference from Pinduoduo & the rise of Social E-Commerce by YCombinator) and by 2020, it’s the 2nd largest ecommerce platform in China behind Alibaba. Can you talk about how Pinduoduo pioneered the concept of social shopping in China? What are the features of social shopping that have been introduced by Pinduoduo? (For example, 1/ creating community via team purchase, 2/ Daily Check ins, 3/ Price Chop, 4/ Card program, 5/ mini games and 6/ personalized recommendations referenced in the YC article) What are the misconceptions from the Western world which Pinduoduo has been mis-understood as a company? How does Pinduoduo contribute to the agriculture sector in China? (See reference by Parmesh Shah from World Bank) Why is Pinduoduo well-suited to help farmers and digitize agriculture? What are the benefits for the farmers in China?  How does Duo Duo Farms help to alleviate poverty and create a sustainable future via the team purchase feature in Pinduoduo? Can you elaborate about the Duo Duo Farm project in Yunnan and what are the key learnings there? Given the current COVID-19 pandemic, what have been Pinduoduo’s response to the situation and what you have done to help the farmers to tide over this tough period? What are the key trends you see in the future of social commerce and does this extend beyond agriculture for Pinduoduo? Closing Can you recommend anything (a book, movie or article) which has inspired you recently? Xinyi's recommendations: understanding the Black Lives Matter movement in the United States. How do our audience find you? Podcast Information: RSS Feed Apple Podcasts Himalaya Spotify Libsyn Google Play Overcast FM SoundCloud Luminary Twitter Facebook Video Facebook Page Linkedin Stitcher Castbox RadioPublic Acast PodBean ListenNotes TuneIn The show is hosted and produced by Carol Yin (@CarolYujiaYin) and originally created by Bernard Leong (@bernardleong, Linkedin). Sound credits for the intro music: Taro Iwashiro, "The Beginning" from Red Cliff Soundtrack. analyseasia · Pinduoduo on Social Ecommerce & Agriculture with Xinyi Lim
In episode 327, Geoffrey Cain, author of "Samsung Rising" joins us in a two parts conversation on his journey across Asia as a journalist and author and discuss the backstory of his new book behind the Samsung Group and how it rise to be the most powerful Chaebol (large family-owned business conglomerate) in Korea. In the second part of the conversation, Geoffrey discuss Samsung's complicated relationship with Apple as both a supplier and competitor and how their arrogance and hierarchical culture led to the Samsung Galaxy Note 7 fiasco. He reveals why he did not include the story of Lee Boo-jin, the daughter of Lee Kun Hee who is often tapped as a potential successor to the Samsung Group and why it is unlikely that there will be a female leader to helm the Samsung Group. Last but not least, Geoffrey offered his perspectives on how Samsung is responsible for exporting culture out of Korea to the rest of the world, particularly the movie Parasite and his thoughts on whether there is a future for another Samsung-like Group emerging in another market out there.  Here are the interesting show notes and links to the discussion (with time-stamps included): Geoffrey Cain, author of “Samsung Rising”, and also regular commentator on The Wall Street Journal (WSJ), Time & The New Republic and former correspondent in The Economist (Website, @geoffrey_cain, LinkedIn) Samsung Rising (Random House, Amazon, Apple Books) [0:30] What are your perspectives on Samsung’s dual relationship with Apple, as a supplier of solid state drives and OLED screens for the iPhone while competing with their flagship phones, the Galaxy series phones? [0:34] Samsung Galaxy note 7 fiasco is well covered in the press. In your view in covering that story, what lessons have Samsung learned from that disaster that almost ended their smartphone dominance? [3:56] What are the fundamental flaws that are in Samsung that are not functioning in today's world? [8:06] The battles within the Lee family for the succession to Samsung's empire. [11:28] Comments on Lee Boo-jin, the sister of Jay Lee as a potential successor to the Samsung Group, and why it is not included in the book "Samsung Rising" Samsung's family connection with the Oscar best movie in 2020 "Parasite" [22:24] Do you think that the success that Samsung has attained after 80 years of work can be replicated in other countries today?  [27:40] Closing Do you have any recommendation of a book, movie, podcast or anything which have inspired you recently? [32:25] Geoffrey's recommendations: Joe Studwell "How Asia Works", James Fallows "China Airborne". Where do our audience find you? [33:45] Podcast Information: RSS Feed Apple Podcasts Himalaya Spotify Libsyn Google Play Overcast FM SoundCloud Luminary Twitter Facebook Video Facebook Page Linkedin Stitcher Castbox RadioPublic Acast PodBean ListenNotes TuneIn The show is hosted and produced by Carol Yin (@CarolYujiaYin) and originally created by Bernard Leong (@bernardleong, Linkedin). Sound credits for the intro music: Taro Iwashiro, "The Beginning" from Red Cliff Soundtrack. analyseasia · Samsung Rising Part Two with Geoffrey Cain
In episode 326, Geoffrey Cain, author of "Samsung Rising" joins us in a two parts conversation on his journey across Asia as a journalist and author and discuss the backstory of his new book behind the Samsung Group and how it rise to be the most powerful Chaebol (large family-owned business conglomerate) in Korea. In the first part of the conversation, Geoffrey discuss the inspiration and the main themes behind "Samsung Rising", and shares the origin story of Samsung and how they went from an agriculture business to a global technology giant today along with Apple and Huawei by a family owned enterprise spanning three generations. Here are the interesting show notes and links to the discussion (with time-stamps included): Geoffrey Cain, author of “Samsung Rising”, and also regular commentator on The Wall Street Journal (WSJ), Time & The New Republic and former correspondent in The Economist (Website, @geoffrey_cain, LinkedIn) [0:26] How did you start your career? [0:55] What have you learned from covering North & South Korea, China and Cambodia in your career journey? [8:35] In your career journey, what are the key lessons you can share with the younger audience? [10:55] Comments on how the history of Samsung aligns with the story of South Korea's rise as one of the top economies in Asia. Samsung Rising (Random House, Amazon, Apple Books) [15:45] What is the inspiration behind writing the book “Samsung Rising”? [16:20] Who are the intended audience of the book? [20:32] If you will to summarize the key takeaways of the book, what would they be so that you can spark their interest to learn more? [22:22] Can you talk about the origins of Samsung and what type of businesses that the family behind the company have grown from a small trading company  to modern technology giant today? [25:05] What does Chaebol means in South Korea? [33:05] The family behind Samsung have gone through three generations: the founder Lee Byung-chul (or B.C Lee in short), Lee Kun-hee and recently to Jay Lee. Can you talk about how each leader has been different and what their contributions to Samsung have been? [36:50] Can Jay Lee step up for Samsung as his father and grandfather have in the past? [49:04] Jay Lee's investments in Silicon Valley and how he is thinking about Samsung's future given that the environment is currently becoming more complex with US protectionism. [52:00] Podcast Information: RSS Feed Apple Podcasts Himalaya Spotify Libsyn Google Play Overcast FM SoundCloud Luminary Twitter Facebook Video Facebook Page Linkedin Stitcher Castbox RadioPublic Acast PodBean ListenNotes TuneIn The show is hosted and produced by Carol Yin (@CarolYujiaYin) and originally created by Bernard Leong (@bernardleong, Linkedin). Sound credits for the intro music: Taro Iwashiro, "The Beginning" from Red Cliff Soundtrack. analyseasia · Samsung Rising Part One with Geoffrey Cain
In episode 325, Tim Culpan from Bloomberg joined us to dissect the most important deal that rocked the Asian business and technology landscape with Facebook investing 5.7B into Reliance Jio. We began the conversation with Tim to set the context behind the deal and what both Facebook & Reliance Jio Platforms stand to gain from this partnership and their ambitions to win the market with a super app concept that is now popular in China & Southeast Asia. Tim also examined the implications to what it means for the Chinese technology giants from Alibaba to Xiaomi in India and the US technology giants such as Google and Amazon. Last but not least, Tim discuss the recent debacles which SoftBank faced with their investments and whether there is a silver lining for the Vision Fund. Here are the interesting show notes and links to the discussion (with time-stamps included): Tim Culpan (@tculpan, Linkedin, Bloomberg), Columnist at Bloomberg [0:29] Since our last conversation, what have you been up to? [1:23] Facebook investment in Reliance Jio and its impact on India [2:39] Ref: Facebook and Ambani Can Be Happy Together by Tim Culpan and Why Facebook is betting big in India by Ravi Agrawal (Source: Foreign Policy) To start, Facebook has invested $5.7 billion for a 9.99% stake in India’s Reliance Jio Platforms, a three-and-a-half-year-old subsidiary of the nation’s most valued firm, Reliance Industries, and the biggest telecom operator in the country with more than 370 million subscribers and valued Jio at a pre-money valuation of $65.95 billion, makes Facebook the largest minority shareholder in the Indian telecom network. To help our audience to start the conversation, what does the telco Reliance Jio do and why they are influential in the India telco market? (Note: Mukesh Ambani is the richest tycoon in India - see AA episode 264 with James Crabtree who profiled him and his family in the book “The Billionaire Raj”) What is Jio Platforms and Mukesh Ambani, the person behind Jio Platforms and his ownership of Reliance Industries, the largest Indian conglomerate. [4:38] Why did Facebook invest in Jio? [6:58] How will Facebook extend its influence of its platform (and we include Whatsapp and Instagram) across India through this investment in Reliance Jio? [8:33] How would this partnership between Facebook and Reliance Jio Platforms help the small and medium businesses and jumpstart their Jio Mart initiative? [10:51] Does Jio Mart will built or be built into the super app under Whatsapp based on this alliance? [13:25] What does this alliance between Facebook and Reliance mean for the China tech giants (Bytedance, Alibaba via Paytm, Xiaomi and Tencent) in Indian market? [15:00] Will Google and Amazon consider the same path now that Facebook did the investment? [18:10] What does Reliance Jio gain from the alliance with Facebook in India? [19:51] How will ecommerce or the mobile landscape change in India with this alliance? [21:25] What does this mean for China and US tech giants entering into India which is becoming more protectionist in the past two years? [22:44] Will SoftBank’s Vision Fund fail in the end? [25:31] Ref: Masayoshi Son's Impatience Just Cost $17 Billion, Bankers Keep Vision Fund Going With Rubber Bands and Being a Sore Loser Doesn't Make WeWork’s Neumann Wrong Why did the Vision Fund experience a set of continued problems from its investees such as Wework and Oyo? [25:54] What can we learn from SoftBank’s other failed investments for example, Zume, the pizza startup in the Bay Area? (QOTD: “A visionary founder with a fire hose of money can’t solve every problem.” by Sarah McBride in the article)  [28:42] What has happened to companies which have gone public such as Slack and Uber? [31:06] Are there any silver linings for the Vision Fund, for example, Grab, Didi or Bytedance? [32:43] Does the Vision Fund have a future? [35:50] Closing  [37:01] Any book or stuff to recommend? [37:19] Tim's recommendations: dance music in the 1980s, 1990s & 2000s and Youtube Where can our audience find you? [38:01] Podcast Information: RSS Feed Apple Podcasts Himalaya Spotify Libsyn Google Play Overcast FM SoundCloud Luminary Twitter Facebook Video Facebook Page Linkedin Stitcher Castbox RadioPublic Acast PodBean ListenNotes TuneIn The show is hosted and produced by Carol Yin (@CarolYujiaYin) and originally created by Bernard Leong (@bernardleong, Linkedin). Sound credits for the intro music: Taro Iwashiro, "The Beginning" from Red Cliff Soundtrack.
In episode 324, Rui Ma, co-host of Tech Buzz China podcast and a trusted voice on China Tech joined us on a conversation to dive deeper on the anonymous report that unveiled Luckin Coffee's recent debacle. We start with a quick history of Luckin Coffee with Rui Ma breaking down the backstory on how Luckin Coffee's alleged fraud came to light and the impact after the fallout. Rui Ma dived deeper beyond the original story with an analysis of the anonymous report entitled "Luckin Coffee: Fraud + Fundamentally Broken Business". Last but not least, she discussed the implications of Luckin Coffee's debacle and how investigative reporting and corporate activism will impact the public listings of Chinese companies in the US. Here are the interesting show notes and links to the discussion (with time-stamps included): Rui Ma, Creator & Host of Tech Buzz China podcast by Pandaily produced by SupChina (LinkedIn, @ruima) [0:26] Since our last conversation, what have you been up to? [0:30] Luckin Coffee Debacle [1:36] Disclaimer: The information provided here by our host and guest are not here to encourage buying or selling any equities mentioned here and investing is strictly our audience’s own responsibility. So, please do your homework.  Origins of Luckin Coffee has been covered by Matthew Brennan in Episode 279 and it was starting to challenge Starbucks Cafe in China two years back. Highly recommended: Rui Ma and Ying Ying Lu in Techbuzz China Episode 65 (Extra Buzz Special): Luckin’s luck ran out To help our audience, Luckin Coffee (瑞幸咖啡) started off with the on demand delivery model and did not have physical stores similar to Starbucks. Then it started scaling up by burning investment cash and building physical stores. The investors came from a variety of sources (according to CB Insights): venture capital (JOY Capital), asset management fund (BlackRock), private equity (Centurium Capital), China International Capital Corporation or CICC (investment bank) and GIC (the sovereign wealth fund in Singapore).   Let’s start from today and work backwards to what happened that led to alleged fraud of Luckin Coffee being announced by the company. How was alleged fraud for Luckin Coffee come to public attention? (Source: Luckin Coffee’s filing of 6K) [3:04] What was the alleged fraud about and how much has been uncovered? [4:23] Who are the people behind the alleged fraud? [5:27] What is the impact given the announcement of the alleged fraud by Luckin Coffee, from stock crashing to customers rushing to claim their coffee? (Source: SCMP) [7:08] Luckin Coffee has been a strange story in China. What is the business model that led to them going public? [9:11] The Anonymous Report titled “Luckin Coffee: Fraud + Fundamentally Broken Business” [11:40] Citing the Extra Buzz Newsletter #7: “The report was very extensive 89 pages, utilized 92 full time, 1418 part time staff on the ground who recorded 11,000 hours of video, which is almost 3 years worth of store days covering 620 stores in 38 different cities.” Basically, it is this report that fanned the flames for Luckin Coffee in their present state. However, there’s a lot of confusion of who did the report, for example, 燃财经 Rancaijing and Muddy Waters leeched off from the report (and somehow Western Media mistakenly attributed to them). So, the first question, what are the key facts behind the report? [12:24] The report have two interesting parts titled “The Fraud” and “The Fundamentally Broken Business Model”. Let start from the first part “The Fraud”, what are the key smoking gun evidence and red flags cited that led to the alleged fraud claim in the report?  What are the business model flaws cited in the report that claims that Luckin Coffee has the fundamentally business model? [15:16] Let’s zero in to one key red flag from the “Fraud” section: “Number of items per store per day inflated by 69% in 2019 3Q and 88% in 2019 4Q, supported by 11,260 hours of store traffic video”, can you explain how the report presents its investigation and use the numbers to get to the conclusion? [18:44] The anonymous report took a very strong look at the unit economics of Luckin Coffee (Business Flaw #3) at page 78: what are the key arguments from the report that establish that Luckin Coffee is not able to be profitable? [20:40] With such a construction of an elaborate report and this entire episode can be turned into a “Billions” TV series episode (by Showtime), the $1m dollar question: who is behind the report and what is their motivation behind it? [24:06] Aftermath  Who benefits from the entire Luckin Coffee’s debacle? [25:44] The hedge funds Starbucks in China, given that 30% of their revenues came from China before Luckin’s entrance to challenge them.  One interesting consequence of this Luckin Coffee episode, is the quality of investigative reporting for corporate fraud in China. The anonymous report took a lot of effort in constructing the actual picture by people going undercover to find out the actual numbers. We notice that this is getting better whenever each scandal pops up in the market. Does that mean that we will see more of these exposes? [27:16] What are your first thoughts when the report was first released into the public? [30:00] Do you think that how Chinese companies should do to dispel myths or being challenged about their businesses? [31:48] What do you think that the US investor learn from this episode? [33:30] Do you think that the English and US media have reported the Luckin Coffee narrative properly? [35:47] Closing [37:52] Rui Ma's recommendation: Dan Grover "How Chinese Apps Handled COVID-19" Carol's video on how millennials cope with COVID-19 with the apps on their smart phone. Podcast Information: RSS Feed Apple Podcasts Himalaya Spotify Libsyn Google Play Overcast FM SoundCloud Luminary Twitter Facebook Video Facebook Page Linkedin Stitcher Castbox RadioPublic Acast PodBean ListenNotes TuneIn The show is hosted and produced by Carol Yin (@CarolYujiaYin) and originally created by Bernard Leong (@bernardleong, Linkedin).  Sound credits for the intro music: Taro Iwashiro, "The Beginning" from Red Cliff Soundtrack. analyseasia · The Anonymous Report that brought down Luckin Coffee with Rui Ma
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