TAIPEI, Aug. 11, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- From July 31st through August 1st, Taiwan Startup Stadium (TSS) held their fifth annual Term Sheet Bootcamp (TSB) in Taiwan, co-hosting with BE Capital, Hong Kong Polytechnic University of Science and Technology, KK Fund, National Kaohsiung University of Science and Technology (NKUST) and Youth Bureau of Kaohsiung City Government. This is the first time for TSB to take place in the South of Taiwan in Kaohsiung. It was both in-person and live-streamed online for the participation of overseas audiences under the travel restrictions of COVID-19. The Bootcamp attracted 42 participants in person and more than a hundred participants online from across Asia.
The two days consist of solid lecture training, fireside chats, role plays, and mentor office hours. Lecture training provided startups with the hard knowledge necessary to fundraise while the fireside chats touched on the various tips and know-hows startups should know when interacting with the different types of investors. Some notable discussions are presented below.
In the fireside chat "Meet Your Match - Fundraising in the COVID-19 Landscape", the discussion started with speakers sharing about local startups' reaction to the "Meet Your Match" opportunity. The platform has attracted hundreds of startups to sign up; however, Co-Founder & CEO of TSS Leroy Yau observed that compared to the other Southeast Asian countries, startups in Taiwan are rather reserved and hesitant to respond to such great opportunities. The speakers agreed that fundraising is like finding one's other half, one's partner in crime and that it's never too early to meet with investors. Relationships should be built early.
With the continuous impact of COVID-19, startups often ask the question "how should we prepare ourselves to face COVID". Frankly, the speakers indicate that COVID doesn't change much about investor meetings. "All the crucial materials such as traction and market expansion plans still need to be well-prepared by the startups before meeting with investors. The only real difference is that a lot of these meetings are going virtual - from offline to online", said Bryan Heng, Investment Analyst at KK Fund. "With the pitches going online, the numbers you can showcase becomes the key points of attraction to investors", added Bobby Liu, Co-Director of TFI. Being able to clearly express the pain point and justify number predictions such as revenue, cost, and cash balance are essential metrics to winning investors' favors.
Some of the advice these venture capitals (VCs) would like to give to startups include: to accurately establish one's online presence, to think about profit-making in the long run, to demonstrate product readiness and time commitment, and to do thorough research before meetings.
In another fireside chat, "Corporate Venture Capitalists (CVC) Methods", the speakers discussed the various aspects CVCs look at when working with startups. Cecilia Tang, Head of Corporate Strategy at LINE Corp pointed out, "when CVCs scout for startups, the main point of evaluation lies within the synergy, not the actual financial return. Take LINE as an example, we are dedicated to building an ecosystem; however, it's hard for us to do everything just by ourselves, that's why we look for startups outside to complete or supplement our ecosystem. In our case, we do it through the PROTOSTAR program". When being asked why he chose CVC over VC, Kevin Chan, CEO of LINE TAXI replied, "lack of funding wasn't the main concern for TaxiGo; however, we perceived the resources from LINE as more valuable".
Furthermore, "it's not necessary to receive investments or to get merged or acquired by corporates if startups can just leverage on the resources provided. But once the corporate buy out a team, they share the same KPI", Cecilia added.
Participants found the Bootcamp to be helpful in shaping their goals and developing connections. "As founders, there are millions of things on our minds. In the past two days, being here and being able to talk to mentors, brainstorming and sharing insights with other founders helps us focus on what's important to us moving forward", said Emily Wu, Co-Founder of Ghost Island Media.
"TSB 2020 is a well-structured program. It's a very intensive two-days, but participants are able to spend time with the experienced industry experts, speakers, and mentors", said Cecilia.
In conclusion, the biggest takeaway for startups is to do the homework well, know one's value and to maintain relationships with investors long term to build up mutual trusts.
TSB this year has officially come to an end, TSS plans to continue taking TSB outside of Taiwan to different Asian countries in the upcoming years. TSS would like to thank all investors and entrepreneurs for the support and will continue to provide startups with various opportunities. In the latter half of 2020, startups can look forward to Startup Bootcamp, training workshops, and cross-border resource sharing events such as #AsiaRocks to help accelerate growth.
SOURCE Taiwan Startup Stadium