Press in 2016

Awareness in all our geographies

We are frequently mentioned in international media, and invited to share our thoughts at well-regarded events across the globe. Our companies get extensive coverage.

For press enquiries, please contact [email protected].

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Large corporates raise the game

The Straits Times

The Straits Times asks VCs to round up key developments in 2016 and look ahead to 2017’s biggest trends.

It notes that while the sector has grown immensely, in both breadth and depth amid a maturing venture capital landscape and a rising number of companies displaying regional or global aspirations, it still needs to develop in deep-tech areas like robotics.

“Fintech has been significantly hyped up by the ecosystem. More attention will be put on fintech and on attracting foreign teams to set up in Singapore,” says Mr James Tan, managing partner of Quest Ventures, “There is a push for ‘deeper’ tech but I am not seeing interesting start-ups in areas such as robotics. We need to focus on the areas that are tackling real-life problems in this region, and not just Singapore.”


23 influential people in tech putting Singapore on the world map

Vulcan Post

Quest Ventures’ Managing Partner James Tan made the list of 23 “influential people” in the technology scene who are putting their marks on the world and making Singapore proud at the same time.

Quest Ventures has “invested heavily in many recognisable tech startups in Singapore, some you have already seen on this list (, Carousell), as well as some others like Shopback, Carro…”

James “has steered Quest Ventures into becoming one of the leading VC firms in both China and Singapore, especially when investing in tech related startups.”



新传媒 前线追踪


新加坡副总理兼国家安全统筹部长张志贤在节目里说:“我们很高兴 第一次把新加坡日带到美国西岸。我们也希望让新加坡跟充满活力的旧金山湾区建立关系,因为这里有很多的科技起步公司。”




To do an MBA or not, that is the question

The Sunday Times

Quest Ventures’ Managing Partner James Tan was mentioned in this article on the value of an MBA. Dave McClure of 500 Startups was quoted, while Grab founders and public officials were highlighted.

“In the public sector, notable examples include Minister in the Prime Minister’s Office Chan Chun Sing, who was in the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s 12-month Sloan Fellows programme, as well as Senior Minister of State for Defence Ong Ye Kung, who has an MBA from the Institute of Management Development in Lausanne, Switzerland.

Ms Grace Fu, the Minister for Culture, Community and Youth, has an MBA from NUS.

For those interested in joining start-ups or looking for a partner to start one, business school seems like a good place to begin.

Other examples include Grab founders Anthony Tan and Tan Hooi Ling, who met at Harvard Business School and came up with the idea that won them runner-up position in the school’s business plan contest, as well as Mr Roger Egan and Mr Vikram Rupani, who met at Insead and went on to start online grocery service RedMart.

Another success story is Mr James Tan, co-founder of China’s second-largest group buying site 55tuan, now called Wowo.

It listed on Nasdaq last year, raising about US$37.3 million. Mr Tan hit on his winning idea when he went to Tsinghua University in Beijing for a two-year MBA in 2008 and met his four co-founders.”


As JFDI pivots to corporate sector, does the start-up scene need to do the same?

The Edge Singapore

Quest Ventures’ Managing Partner James Tan was interviewed for his opinion on the recent closure of the Joyful Frog Digital Incubator’s (JFDI) accelerator programme, one of the earliest accelerators in Southeast Asia.

James said that “accelerators provide a ‘soft landing ground’ for start-up founders, and those who fail to build their own start-up would have gained experience for their next venture” and that “through SG-Innovate, there will be more accelerators tackling different verticals.”

Alex Lin, head of Infocomm Investments Pte Ltd (IIPL); Ken Ng, CEO of insurer NTUC Income; and Lim Kuo-Yi, managing partner of Monk Hill’s Ventures also provided their opinions.


ACE Silicon Valley Chapter to help Singapore tech start-ups tap into US networks and in-market expertise


In conjunction with Singapore Day in San Francisco, California on 24 Sep 2016, the ACE Silicon Valley Chapter was launched by Singapore Deputy Prime Minister and Coordinating Minister for National Security, Mr Teo Chee Hean. With this initiative, ACE will be partnering with the Bay Area Tech Singaporeans (BATS) to help Singaporean tech start-ups tap on in-market expertise and networks in the US so as to provide access to the US market with greater ease.

As Deputy Chairman of ACE and responsible for driving internationalisation, Quest Ventures’ managing partner James Tan, with the chairpersons of BATS and SingaporeConnect, launched the chapter together with DPM Teo.


Back to School – Views from Alibaba’s Jack Ma, Quest Ventures’ James Tan and others on Asia’s appetite for education


As students head back to school after the summer break, CNBC Asia interviewed entrepreneurs and investors for their views on education.

Alibaba’s Jack Ma described the education landscape in China and what he wanted to do for education in the rural areas.  He was followed by James Tan, managing partner at Quest Ventures. James described the EdTech landscape in Southeast Asia, the scale of the difference in investments between China and the US, and the opportunity to use technology to level the playing field for students in frontier markets who may not have access to good local education resources.


Mobile classifieds startup Carousell makes first acquisition weeks after raising $35M


Watch Over Me has been acquired by Carousell. As the first investor in both companies, Quest Ventures was actively involved in the exit and is delighted with the possibilities that this acquisition brings for both companies.

“Less than a month after raising $35 million in new financing, social commerce and classifieds startup Carousell has made its first acquisition. The Singapore-based company has picked up most of the team from Watch Over Me, a safety app for principally for women that is based in Malaysia, in an acquihire deal that beefs up its engineering chops.”


Startup Weekend Singapore draws huge interest from aspiring entrepreneurs

Startup Weekend

Quest Ventures managing partner James Tan joins Vishal Harnal of 500 Startups, Arthur Brejon of Lazada Singapore, Rob Finlay of DBS Fintech incubator and Nicolas Chaussin of Aviva on the final day of the 2016 Startup Weekend Singapore to be part of the judging panel.

At his opening remarks, James highlighted the track record of Startup Weekend Singapore in discovering startups that have gone on to great heights, specifically Carousell (started as SnapSell by Startup Weekend participants) and VulcanPost (started by Startup Weekend organisers) that Quest had invested in.


YT Start-Up Deal Tracker: The Fight For Funds


Entrepreneurs should raise capital when it is available and not when it is required. “You want the confidence that you can run your business for the next 12 months at least. You’d be able to give that confidence to your employees… Make sure that you run the business frugally, have enough cash for the next 12 to 18 months, don’t wait till the last minute to raise the next round, in fact if the times are good and even if you have money, go and raise the next round”, says Kris Gopalakrishnan, Co-founder & former CEO of Infosys, and now Partner at Axilor Ventures.

In this segment on funding, CNBC India also spoke with Shashank ND, Co-Founder & CEO of Practo; Girish Mathrubootham, Founder & CEO of Freshdesk; and James Tan, Managing Partner of Quest Ventures.


Indian Startup Ecosystem Versus China – More Similarities Than Differences

Entrepreneur India

Sneha Banerjee, Senior Correspondent at Entrepreneur India, interviews James Tan for a feature in one of India’s most well-read magazines.

“On the qualities the firm looks for in an entrepreneur, James said that he doesn’t particularly check whether an entrepreneur is a product or a business person because ultimately every founder has to have a team. “No one is an all-rounder. Even Jack Ma has a team behind him. We want to see whether the team members of a startup compliment each other and there must be a little bit of “healthy” competition between so that they drive each other along”, he added.“


Investors rush to fund China tech start-ups

The Straits Times

The Straits Times interviewed two venture capitalists in China, GGV‘s Jenny Lee based in Shanghai and Quest Ventures’ James Tan based in Beijing, for their thoughts on the funding landscape in China, and the opportunities and risks that are present in this gold rush.

“According to research firm Preqin, private investors had poured around US$26.2 billion (S$35 billion) into 796 Chinese tech firms as of the middle of this month.

Beijing-based James Tan… find Chinese tech firms to be very good at localising new ideas from Silicon Valley and achieving superior results on the mainland.”


Quest Ventures now a co-investment partner with Malaysia’s Cradle Fund

Deal Street Asia

Quest Ventures inks co-investment partnership with Cradle Fund, an agency under Kementerian Kewangan Malaysia (Ministry of Finance), becoming a part of the MYR200 million (USD50.92 million) co-investment war chest for Malaysian tech startups.


Dana Pelaburan Bersama Cradle Bernilai RM161.2 Juta Dengan 6 Lagi Rakan Kongsi


Firma dana modal teroka, Cradle Fund Sdn Bhd bekerjasama dengan enam lagi rakan pelaburan bersama untuk menyokong syarikat permulaan teknologi Malaysia, menjadikan dana pelaburan bersama kini bernilai RM161.2 juta berbanding RM159.2 juta dalam kumpulan kelimanya pada Februari.

Enam rakan kongsi baharu itu dan Quest Ventures — menjadikan Cradle Fund mempunyai 25 rakan pelaburan bersama ekuiti berbanding 19 pada masa ini.


His startup survived 5,000 rivals in China to list on Nasdaq. Here’s what he learned.

Tech In Asia

Managing partner James Tan was interviewed by Tech in Asia on execution and going public.

James was the first Singaporean founder in the C-suite to list a Chinese tech company on NASDAQ. This came after several hurdles were crossed, including new Chinese regulations on ownership that affected all foreign-listed entities (eg, Baidu).

Going public with about $1 billion in gross merchandise volume, 55tuan was the first ‪‎O2O‬ Chinese company to list, and the first tech IPO of a Chinese company on NASDAQ that year.


Essential online shops for farm-to-table produce

Michelin Guide Singapore

Cafebond, a new e-commerce startup aims to bring the liveliness of the Australian coffee culture to specialty coffee lovers in Singapore. Their website started taking orders on June 1, and the startup already has plans to penetrate coffee markets in China, Taiwan, and Hong Kong with the backing of Chinese investment giant Quest Ventures.


Quest Ventures selects 2016 WIT Indonesia Start-Up of the Year

Web In Travel

An “admittedly intimidating judging panel of industry experts, including Kei Shibata (Venture Republic), David Peller (, Brett Henry (AngelVest) and Timothy Hughes (Agoda), Kusumo Martanto (GDP Venture), Steven Vanada (Cyber Agent Ventures), and James Tan (Quest Ventures)”, selected Deepdive as WIT Indonesia’s Start-Up of the Year after several rounds of pitching competition.







Quest for the Best

The Edge Markets

In this cover story, Quest Ventures Managing Partner, James Tan, tells The Edge Markets what he looks for in startups, why he enjoys kopitiam sessions and why he thinks you should drop out of school if you need to.

“Although small, it has an impressive track record… When selecting start-ups to invest in, Tan says he looks first for ideas that are both scalable and replicable. “We try to differentiate between scale and replication,” he says. “If you go from a $1 million business in Kuala Lumpur to a $10 million business, that’s scale. But to move from KL to Penang, and from Penang to Bangkok, that’s replication. That’s not scaling.”


We’re Karl Mak & Xiao Ming, co-founders of SGAG. Ask us anything!

Tech In Asia

Quest Ventures-backed SGAG joins Tech In Asia Ask Me Anything (AMA) session. Today SGAG’s content is consumed by over 3 million people weekly across our 6 content distribution platforms with the mission to make every Singaporean’s day a better one. Ask them anything!


5 bootstrap alley startups that stole the show at Tech In Asia Singapore 2016

Tech In Asia

Quest Ventures-backed Cafebond named “Most Decorated Booth” at Tech In Asia Singapore 2016, out of 200 aspiring startup booths that exhibited at the Boothstrap Alley.


A Singaporean acquisition story you have never heard


Before Block 71, before heavy government support, AllDealsAsia was paving the way for startups in Singapore; and now it has been acquired. Co-founder Goh Yiping is a venture partner at Quest Ventures.


Echelon Indonesia 2016


Goh Yiping, founding member & CPO of and venture partner of Quest Ventures discusses best practices in product management for startups at Echelon 2016 in Jarkata.


New app to track big players’ shares trades

The Straits Times

Backed by Quest Ventures, Spiking, a home-grown app that gives investors up-to-the-minute information on share trades went live yesterday.

Spiking allows investors to make better sense of spikes in stock prices by sending instant information to their phones on trades made by company directors and substantial shareholders.


WIT Ajak Startup Founders Ikuti Startup Pitch Competition

Pikiran Rakyat

Penyelenggara mencari ide-ide terobosan dan menerima pengusaha yang pintar dan cerdas untuk ambil bagian. Ini adalah kesempatan bagi para startup founders untuk dilatih oleh para praktisi dunia digital dan mendapat spotlight pada Konferensi WIT Indonesia 2016.

Adapun juri dari kompetisi ini antara lain James Tan (Managing Partner, Quest Ventures), Steven Vanada (Cyber Agent Ventures Indonesia), Kei Shibata (CEO, Venture Republic, Japan), Kusumo Martanto (COO, GDP Venture).


ChinaBang Awards 2016


Quest Ventures’ Associate Director, West China, Cheng Lei joins VC Meetup session at ChinaBang Awards in Chengdu, China. The annual ChinaBang Awards searches for the most promising and valuable startups in China with the aim of founding China’s innovation.


Online Panel: Startup ecosystem in China

Tech In Asia

China has always been on the radar scopes of many in the startup industry. Tech In Asia puts together a panel of experts to answer any questions you have about the ecosystem in China. This Online Panel lineup features: James Tan, Managing Partner of Quest Ventures, Rui Ma, and Junde Yu.


2016 Asia Beat Xiamen

China Daily

Quest Ventures’ analyst joins Asia Beat 2016 as a judge at its startup battle. Asia Beat 2016 gathered over 3000 participantsaround hundred Asian startup projects and representatives of numerous investment firms from China and around the world.










社群經濟再進化 旋轉拍賣率先導入社群概念 推出全新社團功能




2024  |  2023  |  2022  |  2021  |  2020  |  2019  |  2018  |  2017  |  2016  |  2015  |  2014  |  2013  |  2012  |  2011

For press enquiries, please contact [email protected].

Brand assets available here.