A Look At Mentors – Dan Kaplan

Dan is a full stack developer and the 1st employee at SidePrize (https://www.sideprize.com). His specialities include Ruby on Rails, Javascript, Ember, Postgres, and of course HTML/CSS.  

Previously, he worked for Enova where he revamped a monolithic code base into a SOA, created and led a Culture Guild, and worked to Open Source a bunch of the companies technology.

He was also the 1st employee at G2 Crowd (https://www.g2crowd.com/) where he helped build the trademarked G2 Crowd Grid, a dashboard of realtime company metrics, and was the lead developer for the companies SEO strategy .

Dan attended the University of Wisconsin where he studied Economics/Communications and was the founder and President of the DECA Business Club. He came to be a developer via a coding school in Chicago, the Starter League.  He also has participated in a Startup Weekend in Chicago, and participated in the StartupBus (http://startupbus.com/)

You’ll be able to see Dan in person in the upcoming weekend, 16th – 18th October, only at Startup Weekend Georgetown 2015. Come join the amazing workshop with us!


A Look At Mentors – KoeKoe

Koekoe is an illustrator, visual designer and icon enthusiast. Even though she has a computer science degree and went for internship at Motorola and Microsoft Research India, her field preferences gradually shift from technical to UI/UX, branding and visual designs in the past 7 years. She has a passion for vibrant yet clean vector artworks, avatar design, comics and cats. She is part of the team of two that was selected to participate in Startup Chile, a Global Accelerator Program back in 2012.

She spends most of her crafting pixel-perfect icons and interfaces for web and mobile apps like Flvrd, Catmoji, PleaseVoteMe, Picmoji, PlayRally and Lootpop. When she’s not rocking it with her team, she works on t-shirt design, illustrations and webcomics.

Koekoe is coming to Startup Weekend Georgetown this 16th  – 18th October to mentors teams during workshop. You don’t want to miss the chance to listen to her experience in startup and design.

See you there!


A Look At Mentors – Gaurabh Mathure

Gaurabh Mathure is Creative Director at R/GA, a design nerd, and an avid traveler. With 10 years of experience, he has deep expertise in creating compelling digital experiences that influence user behavior, and create business impact.

Having lived and worked in various geographies from India, Denmark, UK and the US, Gaurabh brings a unique global perspective to every team he works with. His work has shaped the product and service experiences for various brands such as Nokia, Samsung, Kodak, Nike, Google & Fossil.

He believes that good products encourage long term engagement between consumers & products. The projects he has led have ranged from designing the digital experience for Nike+, an activity tracking platform and social network that empowers people to stay active, a smart kitchen appliance that learns from user behavior and the redesign of a stock trading platform to empower traders to make better, informed decisions.

In addition to designing for big brands, Gaurabh has been immersed in startups (in India & US) as an advisor and a hands-on expert. Working with the founders, he helps envision, grow and sustain new business ideas through design.

Gaurabh will be coming to Startup Weekend Georgetown this coming weekend, at Wisma Yeap Chor Ee. He will be mentoring teams at the workshop, catch the chance to talk to Gaurabh about his expertise.

See you there!


A Look at Mentors – Matthew Phiong

Matthew is a mobile and a full-stack web developer. He graduated from Universiti Sains Malaysia with a computer science degree and interned at Motorola and Microsoft Research India before venturing into the startup world. He is part of the team that was selected to participate in Startup Chile, a Global Accelerator Program back in 2012.

He built his first website when he was 15 and was one of the first few to build a WordPress theme back in 2005. Throughout the years, he has been working on several web and mobile apps like Flvrd, Catmoji, PleaseVoteMe, Picmoji, PlayRally and Lootpop.

Talk to Matthew about his startups and experience at Startup Weekend Georgetown this 16th – 18th October, at Wisma Yeap Chor Ee. See you there!


A Look At Mentors – Geetika Agrawal

Geetika is Creative Director at R/GA. Currently a digital nomad traveling for a year to 12 countries across Europe, Asia, South America.

As Creative Director, Geetika leads a team of diverse creatives and provides strategic and creative vision to develop breakthrough services, products and communications for global brands. She also serves on the R/GA Accelerator design team that is a launchpad for start-ups in the connected devices and IoT space.

During her 10+ years of interactive experience, Geetika has worked with clients such as Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, Bitfinder, MasterCard, MTV, Disney, Samsung, Nokia, Microsoft, AARP, Barnes & Noble and Walmart. Her team’s work has been featured at TEDIndia, Fast Company, CES and won several industry awards.

Geetika is an Adjunct Professor at School of Visual Arts in New York teaching Interaction Design to 3rd and 4th year students. She has judged award shows, guest lectured at institutions like Ecole Intuit Lab, IxDA, Girls Who Code and advises young designers on a regular basis. She holds a Masters in Industrial Design from Art Center College of Design, California and a Bachelors in Interior Architecture from CEPT, Ahmedabad, India



A Look At Mentors – Daqing Lee

A look at our mentor’s profile. Daqing Lee is one of the mentors for Startup Weekend Georgetown 2015.

Daqing is currently the Technical Evangelist for Microsoft Malaysia, with almost 12 years of experience in IT industry. He currently focuses on technologies for cloud platform, modern apps development, and also working actively to grow the local startup ecosystem. Prior joining Microsoft, he was a tech consultant, solution architect, trainer, and also a Microsoft MVP for 5-years.

Come meet Daqing and talk to him in person at Startup Weekend Georgetown happening this weekend, at Wisma Yeap. See you there!



Your Mentors In Startup Weekend Georgetown 15

Dr. Lau Cher Han

Director of MaGIC Academy

Previously big data scientists and CTO of several startups. He builds many web and mobile applications using a wide range of technology stack, including the most recent mybanjir.com. Dr. Lau is a senior member of QUT Mobile Innovation Lab that delivers app training and develop apps. Dr. Lau developed a news detection system using machine learning and text mining for FairFax Digital (Australia). During his PhD, he created a news mining system to detect news from microblogs, by processing tweets with big data analysis technique, using a wide range of tools of Python, Ruby and Rails, .NET, MongoDB and AngularJS.


Karol Pokojowczyk

CEO, Founder of Colibri.IO

He is a growth Hacker who can code, leveraging online marketing, global sales and SaaS development.

Colibri.IO is a growth Hacking and Inbound Marketing tool to improve your brand visibility on Social Media and your rankings in Search Engines. Colibri shows you where and what your prospects and existing clients are talking about on Twitter, blogs and a bunch of other social networks. This allows you to inject yourself in these discussions with the aim of building relationships, offering value and increasing awareness of your startup and presence. This works even better when you can publicly solve problems through the use of your product or service, garnering powerful social proof. It also integrates seamlessly with Google Analytics to provide you with insight into how your campaigns perform and identify the best conversion funnels.

Karol previously founded 2.0 Web Solutions (Drupal Agency), managed developers and helped numerous companies grow online. He’s an online marketing freak and chief editor of GrowthHacker.am.


Alvin Koay

Founder & CEO of MobileAds.com

He runs an internet company called MobileAds.com. MobileAds.com is a free online ad creator for agencies to build interactive rich media mobile ads in HTML5. The ads are MRAID-compliant and run perfectly in-app, on mobile and also desktop web. The self-served solution can also be white-labelled by DSPs, ad exchanges & networks, retargeting companies, agencies, etc. It also acts as a mobile ad server with detailed analytics.

His expertise lies in partnerships, sales and product development. Alvin is also a certified hypnotherapist, NLP practitioner and life-coach, with accreditation from the International Institute of Neuro Semantics and Meta Coach Foundation.


Johnson Lam

VP of TIME Dot Com Innovation Division

This division is constantly on a lookout to Invest, Incubate or Nurture potential businesses or young startups; either by providing guidance, sent in a satellite team to help the start up, accelerate their grown by providing resources or just invest financially.

On the personal level, He started own business during my College days just to fill the needs of friends/consumers and more importantly, pay for college. It was a Computer and IT Solutions company and later expanded to outsourcing and forming service networks. Then, He started up a Photography and Video production company. It’s a hobby turned into a business and learning platform, followed by Automotive segment.


Howie Chang

UX and Design Specialist

Howie is passionate in all things digital and enjoy designing interfaces, products and services that are attractive, thoughtful, and enjoyable to use. Over the years, he have helped redesign large-scale websites, crafted mobile apps big and small, and freelanced with startups of all kinds. He is now a co-founder of a startup based in Singapore currently in stealth mode.

Formerly the Director of Product Management at RedMart, he is responsible for creating and executing RedMart’s customer facing product roadmap, assisting with the overall strategic vision and in a hands-on fashion, guide all front-end and some middle-layer projects from inception to launch. Prior to RedMart, he was Head of UX and Design at Viki where he led an entire redesign to the web and mobile applications. Viki was later sold for a reported USD200 million to Rakuten.

A proud Penangite and Old Free, Howie received his formal education at Nanyang Polytechnic (Singapore), where he graduated with a Diploma in Multimedia Infocommunication Technology and subsequently received his Bachelor of Science in Multimedia Technology & Design at SIM University (Singapore).


Tan Yin See

Founder & CTO of ARMS Software International / Co-Founder of SmartShopper Malaysia

“Not single core, not duo Core, but Hard Core!” – aka Daddycat, passionate about coding, tiny little computers, and anything that blinks, beeps and vibrates.

He earned several awards with his technology creation such as:

– Winner of HITB 2011 Hackweekday

– GoMobile 2012 most promising apps award (ARMS F&B iPad)

– BB10Jam KL 2012 Hackathon Champion (Augmented Reality app for BB10)

– Malaysia APICTA awards best apps in Hospitality (ARMS F&B POS for iOS)

– Hongkong Appsanity awards (Kwongwah newsreader iOS App)

– DigiCFC 2014 Winner (SmartShopper for iOS and Android)


Marta Olszewska

Head Of Marketing, PiktoChart

She is a marketer by education, SEO (Search Engine Optimization) specialist and web strategist by experience and photographer by passion. Having worked on both the agency and on the customer side for more than 8 years now, she has formed and implemented digital marketing strategies for a range of different industries and products. She has managed small and large web projects starting from the conceptual phase and goal setting through creation of site’s architecture, mocking up a design, forming SEM (Search Engine Marketing), content and social marketing strategies and finishing with analytics and reporting.

She has also managed agency relations as well as companies’ resources including graphic designers, web developers, copywriters and SEO specialists to deliver multilingual websites and conduct effective web marketing campaigns. Apart from providing high level consulting services to a wide variety of clients, She has hands-on experience in SEM, web copywriting, social marketing, PR and blogging. She is passionate about web design and love improving website usability by creating simple and esthetic design concepts.


Christine Liew

UX Director & Co-founder @Shoppertise, The Hipster, Life Learner

Christine believes that selling goods online professionally should be as simple as snapping a photo with your smartphone and share it with the world. By marrying art and science together, she has built a dead-simple yet elegant mobile commerce platform, to empower SMBs to go from selling offline to selling online professionally from their mobile. Solving problems creatively paired with good usability is what makes Shoppertise a young, successful startup today.

Having spent 6+ years as a Regional Art Director for AGENDA Asia (Wunderman), Christine has worked directly with clients like Walmart and Usana in the States, Nokia and Haier in China, as well as YTL and Maybank in Malaysia just to name a few.

First joined the startup scene in 2012 – as the core team member of Soft Space, a mPOS solutions technology company for 2+ years, building mobile payment solutions that’s similar to Square.


Heislyc Loh

Community builder and thought leader on technology start-ups in the Southeast Asian region

He founded StartupMamak (https://www.facebook.com/groups/startupmamak/), a community group for technology start-up entrepreneurs in 2011. Currently, the group boasts of over 2000 members and frequently engages in high-level discussions. He organizes community meet-ups on every first Thursday of the month.

Heislyc is also the Co-Director of the Malaysian chapter of Founder Institute (http://fi.co/), the world’s largest training ground and launch pad for start-up entrepreneurs in 40 different countries. The local accelerator helps aspiring founders build technology companies that withstand the test of time.

As the Malaysian Brand Ambassador for AngelHack (http://www.angelhack.com/), a global hackathon movement, Heislyc gathered 250 software developers, designers and entrepreneurs to enable the creation of over 50 technology prototypes in the span of 24 hours. The hackathon – widely known as “The Hackathon of the Year” – gained the support of local giants TM, Huawei, AMD, Microsoft, RadioShack, MDeC and MaGIC.

When he’s not helping entrepreneurs grow and scale their impact, Heislyc works on changing how people read online with his own start-up project, CoRate.


There are more mentors & speakers coming in too. They are here to help! So, do ask for their guidance.





Things To Do Before Attending Startup Weekend Georgetown (MY)

Prepare Your Pitch If You Have Idea

Image credit to twentyfifteen.sg
Image credit to twentyfifteen.sg

If you have an idea, you are given a 60 seconds opportunity to pitch about your idea to the audience. This is to get the other delegates who support your idea to join you in building product for the next 2 days. So, you should get your idea pitching ready before attending the event and remember to practice using a timer.


Bring Your Laptop & Power Cord, For Building Product

Startup weekend is ideal for building a product instead of company. You need your laptop for important tasks such as market survey, prototype development, interface design, presentation design and so on. Oh ya, do bring a lot of your creative energy too.


Prepare for Self Introduction & Make Friends

You are here to make friends, or maybe your future business partner. During the weekend, you shall see some common questions like “So, what you do?” “Where are you from?” “What is your background?”. So, please get ready to talk to people and introduce yourself as creative as possible. It also helps in building closer relationship which resulted in better teamwork. It would be great if you have a namecard too.


Do Some Research About Startup Tools

There are tools used by startups to build product prototype, conducting survey and preparing your presentation. Startup Weekend has the list of resources to help you – http://startupweekend.org/resources/

Steve Blank – silicon Valley serial-entrepreneur and academician who is based in Pescadero, California has also compiled a list of tools and it is available here – http://steveblank.com/tools-and-blogs-for-entrepreneurs/


Read about Business Model Canvas

You should read a brief about what is business model canvas. Although you will be coached in using the canvas, however, simple understanding before the event can help you and your team better in creating the suitable business model for your products.
For quick review, you may watch these 2 videos.

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ARVE Error: id and provider shortcodes attributes are mandatory for old shortcodes. It is recommended to switch to new shortcodes that need only url


Asking Questions, Get Ready To Communicate with Mentors

There will be mentors helping you to build your product and giving advice in Startup Weekend. They are here to help. Interaction is important to have better understanding. Therefore, don’t be shy to ask questions. You can also prepare your questions to ask before the event.


And, finally, make sure you get lots of rest prior to the event. See you in Han Chiang College.

Why Attend Startup Weekend?

Startup Weekends are all about learning through the act of creating. Don’t just listen to theory, build your own strategy and test it as you go.

Build your network:
This isn’t just a happy-hour. Startup Weekend attracts your community’s best makers and do-ers. By spending a weekend working to build scalable companies that solve real-world problems, you will build long-lasting relationships and possibly walk away with a job or even an investor.

Co-Founder Dating:
We all know it’s not just about the idea – it’s about the team. Startup Weekend is hands down the best way to find someone you can actually launch a startup with.

Learn a new skill:
Step outside of your comfort zone. With a whole weekend dedicated to letting your creative juices flow, Startup Weekends are perfect opportunities to work on a new platform, learn a new programming language, or just try something different.

Actually launch a business:
Over 36% of Startup Weekend startups are still going strong after 3 months. Roughly 80% of participants plan on continuing working with their team or startup after the weekend.

Get face time with thought leaders:
Local tech and startup leaders participate in Startup Weekends as coaches and judges. Get some one-on-one time with the movers and shakers in your community.

Save money & get stuff:
Startup Weekends typically cost between $75 and $150 (less for students). Your ticket covers seven meals, snack, access to exclusive resources from our sponsors, and of course, all the coffee you can drink.

Join a global community:
Join over 45,000 Startup Weekend alumni, all on a mission to change the world.

Source: http://startupweekend.org/

The first ever Startup Weekend arrives at Johor Bahru!


Over the weekend, we saw tremendous support and enthusiasm from the Johor Bahru community during Startup Weekend Johor Bahru.

The first ever Startup Weekend in Johor Bahru was held from 14th to 16th of November 2014 at MSC Cyberport, Johor Bahru. SWJB was organized as the kick start event for StartupJohor, a social enterprise envisioned to build the local startup community in Johor through creating meaningful startups and educational events as well as connecting technopreneurs around the southern region of Malaysia.

With an overwhelming attendance rate, participants ranging from students to working adults, 29 pitches were presented on the very first day. With the help from the mentors and facilitators, 16 prototypes were produced in the next 54 hours.

After a variety of ideas were pitched on the first day, a voting process on the popularity of the idea was held. The participants decided on which ideas they are interested to work on and formed teams, working on said idea for the weekend. Throughout SWJB, we had guest speakers and mentors guiding the participants on the different stages of starting up; from ideation, to market validation, design, creating prototypes and pitching.

On the final day, 16 pitches were presented in front of the panel of judges and the top 3 teams were awarded. The grand prize was awarded to Jomla! A mobile application that helps students find part time jobs within a few clicks.


Grand Prize Winner: Jomla!

HandyMate, a trade service booking platform that connects handymen and homeowners, came in as the first runner up and the second runner up went to RentAStay; a localized homestay listing and booking portal for Malaysians.


First Runner Up: HandyMate


Second Runner Up: Rent A Stay

What’s next for the winners? Jomla!, HandyMate and RentAStay will be incubated by MSC Cyberport for the next six months and will receive mentorship with different specialization in their journey of developing their project into a commercially viable product. They will also participate in Global Startup Battle 2014, the largest virtual startup battle, in the Champions track, representing Malaysia to compete regionally with the Startup Weekend winners in Asia Pacific. The top 2 regional winners will then compete globally.


“We’re going to bring our startup project into market in the coming 6 months. Meanwhile, we’re representing Malaysia to Global Startup Battle! We’ll be specially trained by entrepreneurs & mentors in the 6 months, and be ready to kickstart.”

– Zi Kang Tai, Jomla!.



Startup Weekend Johor Bahru was the result of months of preparation ever since the ideation of StartupJohor in July 2014. StartupJohor will continue holding events to create impact to the local startup community and will keep working to unleash the potential of Johoreans entrepreneurs.Global Startup Battle 2014 is also open for the teams that participated in SWJB in other tracks. The identified teams that have high potential in creating a commercially viable product will also be supported.


“#SWJB may be over, but the startup scene in JB has just started. We want to make JB a sexy place for startups where talents will come back”

– Feng Lim, organizer of SWJB. 


Want to be kept updated about the coming events? Follow StartupJohor at https://www.facebook.com/groups/startupjohor/