Category Archives: business

Fifteen Prominent Singaporean Entrepreneurs Recognised at Asia Pacific Entrepreneurship Awards 2017, (APEA)

Singapore, 18th August 2017: The Asia Pacific Entrepreneurship Award 2017 honoured fifteen prominent entrepreneurs and business leaders from Singapore in a grand gala dinner at Sands Expo & Convention Center, Singapore.

The Asia Pacific Entrepreneurship Awards, better known as APEA, is a regional recognition program organized by Enterprise Asia, the region’s foremost association and think-tank for entrepreneurship. The Awards are presented to a handful of entrepreneurs across Asia Pacific each year, with award ceremonies held in thirteen countries every year.

The Awards is often compared to the Olympics for the stringent entry criteria and highly competitive judging parameters. The nomination is by-invitation only with each nominee subjected to a rigorous judging process, including financial verification by an appointed audit firm and mandatory physical site audit and interview, culminating in a confidential balloting process by Enterprise Asia’s committee. This year, the award received close to eighty nominees from Singapore and fifteen winners across ten industry categories were selected.

RECIPIENT LIST OF ASIA PACIFIC ENTREPRENEURSHIP AWARDS 2017 SINGAPORE

 

Special Category – Lifetime Achievement Award

 

Mr Kwek Leng Beng, Executive Chairman of Hong Leong Group

 

 

Entrepreneur of The Year

 

for Electrical & Electronics Industry

 

Mr Albert Phuay, Founder & Chairman of Excelpoint Technology Ltd

 

 

for Trading & Wholesaling Industry

 

Mr Cheam Hing Lee, CEO of Rhodium Resources Pte Ltd

 

 

APEA Winners 2017 Singapore

 

Mr Scott D Smith, CEO of Beyonics International Pte Ltd

Dr Terence O’Çonnor, Group CEO of Courts Asia Ltd

Mr Ronald Goh Wee Huat, Managing Director of Electronics & Engineering Pte Ltd

Ms Danielle Warner, Founder & CEO of Expat Insurance Pte Ltd

Mr Ori Leshem, CEO of Genesis Retail Pte Ltd

Mr Adam Simkins, Director of Getz Bros. & CO. (Singapore) Pte Ltd

Mr David Kim, Managing Director SEA -ANZ of Tmax Singapore Pte Ltd

Ms Chin Wei Jia, Group CEO of Health Management International Ltd

Mr Low Cheong Kee, Managing Director & Founder of Home-Fix D.I.Y Pte Ltd

Mr Suneet Goenka, Founder &  Group Managing Director of Red Apple Travel (S) Pvt. Ltd

Mr Tan Poo Seng, Founder & Managing Director of TopZone E&C Pte. Ltd

Ms Doris Wee Hui Cheen, Director of Wendell Trading Company

Co-founder of HugProperty Shares About The Pattern of Dodgy Property Agents

Article Contributed by PropertyHug

Co-authored by Mr. Ku Swee Yong, Co-founder of HugProperty with Janice Chin Li Ping, undergraduate from the Department of Real Estate, National University of Singapore. 

In today’s competitive services market, real estate agents are not only caught in the strife of industry competition, they also have to grapple with being made redundant by technology. To say that there are many real estate agents in Singapore is an understatement — there are more than 28,000 licensed agents or about 1 agent serving every 140 residents; and this is probably the principal cause of the stiff competition in the industry. The competition is exacerbated by the growing number of buyers, sellers, landlords and tenants who opt for self-service through web applications. We are concerned that some agents have compromised their integrity and their “duty of care” for their clients in order to trump the competition.

Infographic 1: Summary of the key points in the article . Image: HugProperty

So, buyers, sellers, landlords and tenants: beware! We want to highlight to you that many of the listings on property portals and websites are not real. Those seemingly attractive and enticing deals may just be potholes for you to step into. We have encountered several of these unfortunate events ourselves, and in this article, we highlight some red flags that you should keep a lookout for. It is vital that you take precaution to ensure that you do not fall into the traps created by a few crafty agents.

Scenario A — Fake news and listings are increasingly common: The agent you call does not have an actual listing of the property you saw online.

 

A property listing is an advertisement of a property that is put up for sale or for lease. Listings may appear on property portals or in traditional print media, such as the classified ads in the newspapers. Sellers and landlords may appoint one or more licensed real estate agents to list the properties to attract buyers and tenants. Conversely, buyers and tenants may also engage real estate agents to source for suitable properties that meet their budgets and needs.

 

To think that all listings of properties are genuine and available at any point in time is to picture a world of sunshine and rainbows. The sad truth is: there are many cases of fake listings put up to bait direct buyers and tenants.

 

We term these fake listings “imitations”. Why so? They look almost identical to other real listings, but upon careful inspection, something may be amiss. These imitations sometimes use photos or descriptive information copied from listed properties posted by other property agents. Sometimes, even after a property has been sold, unscrupulous agents might copy the property’s photos for use in their fake listings. We have experienced several of such cases and we have highlighted these imitations to the owners of the apartments. These agents would quickly remove the imitations after the owners have called to inquire if the agents were given the permission to represent them for sale or for rent.

Usually, imitations use very attractively low prices to entice buyers and tenants because they look like “good deals that should not be missed”. Then when direct clients call these agents to enquire, the usual responses are that the property is “sold” or “taken” or “no longer available”, and the agents will immediately ask, “May I show you another apartment in the same block?” If the agent received calls from other property agents who are representing buyers, they either do not pick up the calls or they do not return calls. This is commonly seen in districts 9, 10 and 11 where transaction values are higher and the probability of attracting unsuspecting foreign buyers and tenants is likewise higher. Higher value properties also translate to a higher quantum of the 1% agent fees, which is sufficiently rewarding for the agents to put in efforts to pull such tricks.

 

We estimate that up to 20% of the listings posted online are not genuine. The percentage could be higher for luxury developments. Buyers who receive such replies from agents should immediately congratulate the agent that the property is already sold or leased out, and then hang up the phone. To avoid being further prospected by that agent, buyers would do well to appoint a trustworthy agent to do their home search. Let your agent represent you and let him sieve out and deal with the numerous imitations in the property portals.

 

Scenario B — The agent has actual properties to list, but the information is misleading

 

Fake-lister agents deliberately post listings of properties with incredibly low prices to attract direct buyers and tenants. Unsuspecting buyers and tenants will then ring the agents up because they may reflect the lowest dollar per square foot price ($psf) or rental for that condominium unit. The $psf may give a different impression in different contexts. For example, if a buyer wishes to compare prices in the same district or perhaps properties with similar attributes but in different condominium blocks, $psf will be a key metric in measuring the relative value of the properties. Merely showing the buyers how cheap a property is based on $psf comparisons without describing much about the size and layout of the property does not reveal much about whether the property is really well-priced.

 

The buyer may see an advertisement for a 750 sqft apartment for sale at $980psf (i.e. $735,000) in a condominium where the average transacted prices in the last year were around $1,200 psf. It gives the impression of a $220 psf discount from the recent transacted average. However, only when the buyer views the apartment will he realise that the very “cheap” 750 sqft apartment is a shoebox unit with 450 sqft of built-in area, a 260 sqft patio and another 40 sqft air-conditioner ledge. Or it could be a “penthouse” unit with 400 sqft of built-in area, a 300 sqft roof terrace and a 50 sqft stairwell. The low $psf price is deliberately highlighted to create the impression that the property is a great buy. Buyers and tenants, do take note! Many other variations of the same pattern exist. Most times, information that is not revealed is more important than information that is highlighted.

 

While some agents withhold information, other agents offer a lot of information about the properties to show how knowledgeable they are about a particular condominium or district. They would purposely post many listings in a particular district they claim to be active in, to impress upon prospective buyers and tenants that they “specialise” in that neighbourhood. Unsuspecting clients may be dazzled by these agents, but tell-tale signs could be seen from their overenthusiasm. For example, in a listing for a condominium in Sentosa Cove, the agent included a description “near HarbourFront MRT Station”. An agent who understands the needs of the residents in Sentosa Cove will not highlight the MRT station, and will certainly not say that HarbourFront Station is near.

 

While we would love to believe that some agents are really familiar with certain districts or market segments, we need to be mindful that many of them just want to create that impression so that they have a higher chance of being contacted by prospective clients.

 

We have merely touched on a handful of examples of the many patterns we have encountered. To discuss all the cases we regularly see will require too many pages. The ultimate aim of these agents is simple: to cut out other agents in order to get direct clients to call them, to swing these clients to their own actual listings or to get the clients to appoint them as a buyer’s representative.

Unfortunately, in trying to outwit the competition, they create misinformation in the market.

 

In the speech on Budget 2017, the Minister of State for National Development Dr Koh Poh Koon spoke about how “it may be more important for property agents now to hone their skills in servicing clients and building up their credentials rather than just competing on marketing and closing transactions.” We wish that more agents will adopt this attitude and compete on service, rather than conjuring smoke and mirrors.

 

 

 

We at HugProperty are deeply concerned about the clients’ interest and we wrote this piece to raise awareness about the patterns displayed by dodgy agents to fend off competition. We recommend clients to carefully select an agent that they feel comfortable with and to appoint the agent exclusively to represent them, whether it is for a property search (for purchase or rent), or to list a property (for sale or let). The appointed agent will be fully motivated to represent the clients’ best interests and diligently assist clients in marketing or searching for properties.

 

More importantly, your exclusive agent will be able to ward off the dodgy agents with colourful patterns.

 

P.S: While we were researching and preparing this article, the Council for Estate Agencies published a disciplinary case in their 02/2017 newsletter titled “Cost of misleading and false ads – $17,500”. The CEA highlighted several cautionary points arising from the errant property agent’s actions: placing fake or dummy advertisements, placing advertisements without property owners’ consent and omitting mandatory details in advertisements. Readers who are keen to know more about the case may refer to the online newsletter here: https://www.cea.gov.sg/docs/default-source/module/newsletter/2-2017/website/cost-ofmisleading-and-false-ads.html

 

Sage hires FinTech heavyweight to lead Asia Pacific business

Australian and Former Western Union Business leader Kerry Agiasotis to take senior leadership role

Singapore – August 11 2017 – Sage, the market leader for integrated cloud accounting, payroll and payment systems, has announced the appointment of Kerry Agiasotis into the role of Executive Vice President for Sage Asia Pacific.

Starting at Sage on 11th September, Agiasotis will report to President Blair Crump and take responsibility for ensuring Sage’s continued growth and success in the Asia Pacific (APAC) region as well as resume responsibilities for the Australia business. Agiasotis will maintain Sage’s focus on providing customers with newly-launched global cloud technologies and support, new customer acquisition and ensure a loyal following for local payroll, payment and accounting solutions, all of which contribute to quality growth.

Agiasotis joins from Western Union Business Solutions, where he had been President of Western Union’s global Business Solutions division since October 2013. Previously, he led the company’s Sales function and held the position of Regional Managing Director for the APAC region. He also spent time in leadership roles Oracle’s sales business and at Siebel Systems.

Kerry has more than 20 years’ experience in business management, sales and consulting gained primarily in the Financial Services and IT Industries and has a deep understanding of business builders, having had his own business consultancy practice serving SMEs in the past.

Kerry Agiasotis added: “Sage has taken great strides across the APAC region to support businesses – the engine room of the economy – with emerging cloud technologies that help them grow and thrive. I’m excited to work with colleagues to build on this success and serve customers with the transformative power of Sage’s software solutions.”

The Australian-born Mr. Agiasotis holds an Executive MBA degree from the Australian Graduate School of Management and will be based in Sydney, Australia.

Agiasotis steps into the leadership role after Alan Osrin, Managing Director, Sage Australia announced his impending retirement a few months ago.

 

Super Evil Megacorp Raises $19M From Its Existing Investors

Super Evil Megacorp, creators of Vainglory, has raised $19 million in funding from its existing investors bringing total funding amount to date to $63 million. Super Evil Megacorp’s backers include General Catalyst, Index Ventures, Signia Venture Partners, Korea Investment Partners, CrossCut Ventures, Initial Capital, The Raine Group, ZhenFund, Yuri Milner, and Jim Breyer of Breyer Capital

“Already the most competitive mobile MOBA on the market, with an active global esports scene and growing community, Vainglory is off to a great start,” CEO Kristian Segerstrale said. “Together with our investors we’re doubling down on our missions to build the best core gaming experiences for the touchscreen generation, and to create a home for talented game developers who are passionate about pushing the boundaries of the industry.

Super Evil will utilize the additional funding to continue to grow its team of masters-at-their-craft game designers, engineers and artists. Having recently doubled its San Mateo office space, the company has grown from 50 to 80 in the last six months alone and is looking to expand further. Super Evil will also use the investment to continue developing its proprietary, console-grade, multi-platform E.V.I.L. engine that has made Vainglory’s stunning graphics, beautiful visual effects and realistic animations possible. Currently, the studio is heavily focused on developing Vainglory’s upcoming 5v5 game mode, which will add to the strategic depth of the game and offer more to the already thriving Vainglory competitive community.

About Vainglory

Vainglory is a multiplayer online battle arena (MOBA) video game, developed and published by Super Evil Megacorp for iOS and Android devices. The game features traditional elements of the PC game genre, where players of two opposing teams fight to destroy the enemy base by controlling the path between the bases, which is lined by turrets and guarded by AI controlled enemy creatures. Players may also battle for control points that supply extra resources, often giving teams the edge in destroying the enemy base.

 

Optimized for touch-based controls and portability, Vainglory features simplified gameplay mechanics and an intuitive interface for the ultimate mobile MOBA experience. Powered by the proprietary E.V.I.L.™ engine, Super Evil games deliver console-quality graphics, precision controls and online gameplay experiences not possible with an out-of-the-box tablet engine solution.

Contributed Article By NICE – How automation is shaping the workplace of the future?


Darren Rushworth, President of NICE Asia Pacific

By Darren Rushworth, President APAC, NICE Ltd

It is inevitable that robots will become our co-workers. Any repetitive task that requires accuracy and speed, but little judgment, would be better performed by a robot. When humans are made to perform manual, mundane processes repeatedly, it can cause frustration over time and be error prone. Given the tight labour market for good talent[1], it simply is not a good use of precious resources either.

The solution is called Robotic Process Automation (RPA) and it’s here in Asia today. Through RPA, Asian businesses can automate many repetitive processes, in both front and back offices, and improve efficiencies and effectiveness to become more competitive in today’s digital landscape.

While IDC expects 40 percent of digital transformation initiatives in Asia Pacific to be supported by Artificial Intelligence (AI) capabilities by 2020, only 12 percent of Chief Information Officers (CIOs) in the region believe that AI will have a positive impact on their businesses in the next five years.[2]

It is not uncommon for CIOs who are saddled with shrinking budgets and increasing demands from business users to be sceptical about yet another new technology. What they want to know is how the technology will work, if it will really deliver on the hype, and what’s the Return on Investment (ROI)? Here are the answers to these questions:

Happier customers, better business

Customer satisfaction is all about giving the customer what they want, when they want it. All industries today are under immense pressure of providing the ultimate customer experience in a consumer-centric world, while keeping costs as low as possible.

By replacing lengthy manual tasks with faster, automated processes, Asian organisations, across industries, can now look forward to higher customer satisfaction and cost savings.

In fact, we saw a financial services organisation reduce its average call-handling time by 82 percent through automating the entire customer alert process. With RPA taking over this routine, yet critical job, the human call centre agents are now able to focus on more value-added tasks such as fraud investigation and customer service. The organisation is now handling more than 8,000 alerts each month, with 99 percent accuracy, and ensuring satisfaction throughout the entire customer journey[3].

Applicable across industries, we also saw a retail company eliminate 100 percent of order entry errors by adopting RPA to facilitate delivery requests and customer follow-ups. This resulted in improved accuracy for the business, a growing base of loyal, happy customers, and increased revenue growth over the years3.

RPA, the most reliable co-worker

“Robots are taking away our jobs.” This is a real fear of many employees today[4], but the truth is that RPA works best by working hand-in-hand with humans, not by replacing us. While RPA can act as a standalone tool for automated processes, it can also assist human employees in performing tasks quickly and more accurately. By relieving employees of repetitive, menial tasks, they can then be assigned to more strategic work and given opportunities to take up new skills to stay relevant and competitive.

According to industry analysts, RPA is enabling enterprises to execute business processes five to ten times faster, with an average of 37 percent fewer resources. These productivity gains are not resulting in job losses, but are enabling companies to re-deploy employees to handle higher-value tasks and a greater volume of work[5].

For example, when a transportation company implemented RPA for its package re-delivery scheduling, the contact centre agents were freed from routine processes and high-stress tasks, enabling them to be more proactive and productive in their relationships with customers3.

Killing two birds with one stone, RPA enables companies to improve customer service, while increasing employee satisfactions levels. Automation has been around for many years and RPA simply takes it one step further, by bringing it from the factory floor into offices, contact centres, risk management functions, and more. When the upside is happier customers, happier employees, improved productivity, and revenue growth, there’s no reason not to get started today.

About NICE

NICE is the worldwide leading provider of both cloud and on-premises enterprise software solutions that empower organizations to make smarter decisions based on advanced analytics of structured and unstructured data. NICE helps organizations of all sizes deliver better customer service, ensure compliance, combat fraud and safeguard citizens. Over 25,000 organizations in more than 150 countries, including over 85 of the Fortune 100 companies, are using NICE solutions

 

[1] THE CREATIVE CIO, Harvey Nash and KPMG, 2016

[2] IDC FutureScape: Worldwide IT Industry 2017 Predictions, IDC, November 2016

[3] NICE ROBOTIC AUTOMATION CASE STUDIES EBOOK, NICE

[4] More Robots, Fewer Jobs, Bloomberg, 8 May 2017

[5] ISG: RPA Increasing Productivity, Not Job Losses, Information Services Group (ISG), 3 May 2017

Malwarebytes Research: 1 Out of 3 SMEs in Singapore Victims of Ransomware

Ransomware Attack Downtime, Not Ransom Demand, is the Business Killer

Singapore, – 1 August, 2017 – Malwarebytes, the leading advanced malware prevention and remediation solution, released its “Second Annual State of Ransomware Report” today. The multi-country study surveyed 1,054 small and medium enterprises (SMEs) across Singapore, France, U.K., Germany, Australia, and North America. The report, conducted by Osterman Research, explores ransomware attack frequency, impacts of attacks in SMB environments, costs of attacks, attitudes towards ransom payments, preparedness and more.

 

Ransomware is a relatively common problem for SMEs in Singapore, with the research revealing that more than one-third, 35%, of Singapore-based SMEs having experienced a ransomware attack in the last year. Close to a fifth (21%) of those who had been hit by ransomware had to cease all business operations immediately, and 11% lost revenue as a direct result of the attack.

 

The impact of ransomware is often measured in terms of cash lost through ransomware payments. However, the report finds that downtime caused by ransomware can have a more significant impact on one’s business. The majority of cybercriminals (53%) who strike SMEs in Singapore with ransomware ask for payments of less than USD 1,000. With only 7% asking for sums more than USD 10,000.

 

It seems that most of the pain incurred from being a ransomware victim can be tied to either the loss of files, with 33% of SMEs who refused to pay the ransom losing access to files as a result, or the downtime that it causes. More than 61% of companies in Singapore hit by ransomware, experienced downtime of more than 9 hours from a single incident of ransomware; the equivalent to a full working day.

 

It is clear that SMEs in Singapore view ransomware as a major problem, with ransomware ranking as the top security problem for SMEs along with malware infiltration thorugh email; 72% of respondents indicated they are critical problems. This was followed by email phishing (70%) and malware infiltration via web browsing (64%). The bottom three concerns were: insider theft of data (55%), phishing through social media (39%) and the physical theft of laptops and mobile devices (23%).

 

Despite being a top concern for SMEs in Singapore, only one out of 10 (9%) were confident that they would be able to stop ransomware attacks. Even SMEs who have been hit by ransomware previously are finding it difficult to pinpoint how they were infected, with a third of respondents (30%) indicating they did not know how they were infected. Not knowing how a ransomware infection started, can make removal of malware more difficult, and also makes it hard to determine what the company’s cybersecurity gaps are.

 

“Businesses of all sizes are increasingly at risk for ransomware attacks,” said Jeff Hurmuses, Managing Director and Area Vice President, APAC, Malwarebytes. “However, the stakes of a single attack for a small business are far different from the stakes of a single attack for a large enterprise. Osterman’s findings demonstrate that SMBs are suffering in the wake of attacks, to the point where they must cease business operations. To make matters worse, most of them lack the confidence in their ability to stop an attack, despite significant investments in defensive technologies. To be effective, the security community must thoroughly understand the battles that these companies are facing, so we can better protect them.”

 

“Second Annual State of Ransomware Report” top findings for Singapore include:

 

  • The impact of ransomware on SMBs can be devastating. For roughly one in six impacted organizations, a ransomware infection caused 25 or more hours of downtime, with some organizations reporting that it caused systems to be down for more than 100 hours. Further, among SMBs that experienced a ransomware attack, 21% reported that they had to cease business operations immediately, and 11% lost revenue.
  • Most organizations make addressing ransomware a high priority, but still lack confidence in their ability to deal with it. Of the Singapore SMEs surveyed, 73% place a high or very high priority on addressing the ransomware problem. Despite these investments, nearly one-half of the organizations surveyed expressed little to only moderate confidence in their ability to stop a ransomware attack.
  • For many, the source of ransomware is unknown and infections spread quickly. For 30% of organizations in Singapore that suffered a ransomware infection, decision makers could not identify how the endpoint(s) became infected. Notably, more than 20% of ransomware infections spread to other devices.
  • Most SMBs do not believe in paying ransomware demands. 62% of Singapore based respondents believe that ransomware demands should never be paid. Most of the remaining organizations believe that demands should only be paid if the encrypted data is of value to the organization. Among organizations that chose not to pay cybercriminals’ ransom demands, about one-third (33%) lost files as a result.
  • Current investments in technology might not be enough. About one-quarter of SMEs in Singapore claim to have been running anti-ransomware technologies. However, 35% of businesses in the country have experienced a ransomware attack.

 

“It’s clear from these findings that there is widespread awareness of the threat of ransomware among businesses, but many are not yet confident in their ability to deal with it,” said Hurmuses. “Companies of all sizes need to remain vigilant and continue to place a higher priority on protecting themselves against ransomware.”  

 

To view the full global “Second Annual State of Ransomware” report for more detailed findings and analysis, visit link

 

Criteo Reports Strong Results for 2nd Quarter 2017

SINGAPORE – August 3, 2017 – Criteo S.A. (Stock Quote: CRTO), the commerce marketing technology company, today announced financial results for the second quarter ended June 30, 2017.

 

  • Revenue increased 33% (or 35% at constant currency[1]) to $542 million.
  • Revenue excluding Traffic Acquisition Costs, or Revenue ex-TAC,[2] grew 32% (or 34% at constant currency) to $220 million, or 41% of revenue.
  • Adjusted EBITDA2 grew 38% (or 42% at constant currency) to $54 million, or 25% of Revenue ex-TAC.
  • Cash flow from operating activities increased 214% to $60 million.
  • Free Cash Flow2 increased $37 million to $33 million.
  • Net Income decreased 44% to $8 million, driven by the accounting impact of the HookLogic, Inc. (“HookLogic”) acquisition and restructuring costs in China in the second quarter.
  • Adjusted Net Income per diluted share2 increased 18% to $0.39.

 

Operating Highlights

 

  • The year-over-year growth in same-client Revenue ex-TAC accelerated from the prior quarter to 17% at constant currency, the result of better technology and a broader supply network.
  • We added a total of 950 net clients, ending the quarter with more than 16,000 commerce and brand clients, while maintaining a 90% client retention across the business.
  • Criteo User Device Graph, continued to grow in scale and efficiency, with 76% of Revenue ex-TAC generated from users matched in the graph.
  • Criteo Direct Bidder, our next generation header bidding technology, is now connected to over 450 publishers globally, helping increase their average yield by 20% to 40%.
  • We are testing several new product initiatives with promising results, including app installs, CRM onboarding for brands and retailers, and Store-to-web retargeting campaigns.

 

 

 

[1] Growth at constant currency excludes the impact of foreign currency fluctuations and is computed by applying the 2016 average exchange rates for the relevant period to 2017 figures.

[2] Revenue ex-TAC, Adjusted EBITDA, Adjusted Net Income per diluted share and Free Cash Flow are not measures calculated in accordance with U.S. GAAP.

 

Read full press release

Criteo reports strong 2017Q2_result

 

This Kickstarter Project by Hong Kong Start-Up Got Fully Funded Within 7 hours.

ORII’s bone conduction technology delivers clear audio with complete privacy by sending sound vibrations through the finger and directly into the wearer’s ear.

Origami Labs, a maker of connected devices, wants to shake the world with its latest smart ring – ORII. The company claims that it is the world’s first voice-powered ring that allows users to make calls, send messages, or command a voice assistant, such as Siri or Google Assistant, by simply placing their fingertip to their ear.

It uses a technology called “bone conduction” – one that is used in the medical field to create devices for the hearing impaired. ORII uses this technology that could transmit sound through the finger to enable on-the- go voice communication.

The product is currently listed in the Kickstarter and it is fully funded within 7 hours.

This company is also recognised by Hong Kong Business Magazine as one of Hong Kong’s top 10 Hottest Startups in 2017.

REA GROUP ANNOUNCES NEW ASIA COMMUNITY PARTNERSHIP PROGRAM

REA Group (Stock Quote – ASX:REA) today announced a new Asian community partnership program through a three-year commitment with the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC).

Henry Ruiz, REA Group Asia Chief Executive Officer

As part of the partnership, REA Group will provide financial and in-kind support to regional projects and local Red Cross/Red Crescent societies. REA Group which owns and operates the iProperty Group will support the Singapore Red Cross, in the form of matched employee donations and volunteering.

 

Henry Ruiz, REA Group Asia Chief Executive Officer, said the business is incredibly proud to be partnering with the ICRC to support the organisation’s efforts around ensuring humanitarian protection and assistance for people in need.

 

“We’re incredibly pleased to be bringing our community partnership program to Asia for the first time and having the opportunity to work alongside the ICRC to improve the lives of others across the region.

“The ICRC is the largest humanitarian network in the world and we feel humbled to be able to play a role in supporting the incredibly important work they do,” Mr Ruiz said.

Arnaud De Baecque, ICRC’s Deputy Regional Director for Asia and the Pacific welcomed REA’s three year commitment, and commented: “Expressions of solidarity like this one from REA Group and its employees makes it possible for the ICRC to continue our work in some of the most difficult areas in support of those most affected by conflict and violence.”

 

Established in 1863, the ICRC is an impartial, neutral and independent organisation whose exclusively humanitarian mission is to protect and assist victims of armed conflict and other violence. In 2016, the ICRC provided food to 14.8 million people, delivered curative medical consultations to over 3.8 million people, and helped repair, build or upgrade water-supply, sanitation and other infrastructure benefitting 28.4 million people. The ICRC also helped 910 people, mostly minors, reunited with their families.

Announcing the new Surface Pro for Singapore

Microsoft announced that the new Surface Pro and Surface Pro Signature Type Cover are now available for pre-order in Singapore starting 20 July from the Microsoft Store, as well as authorised retailers including Best Denki, Challenger, Courts, Harvey Norman, and Newstead. Pre-order for commercial customers is also available via Authorised Device Resellers including AsiaPac Distribution Pte Ltd, Insight Technology Solutions Pte Ltd, JK Technology Pte Ltd, SoftwareOne Pte Ltd and UIC Asian Computer Services Pte Ltd.

Unveiled earlier in May, the new Surface Pro has been redesigned from the inside out to give people more performance with improved battery life. Everything has been streamlined and refined — from softer, rounded edges to cameras built to fade into the bezel. At just 8.5mm thin and starting at 767 grams, the new Surface Pro packs the power of a 7th generation Intel® Core™ processor into a new fanless, whisperquiet design.

 

The Surface Pro delivers the most performance and battery life in a laptop that is this thin, light and quiet. It features up to 13.5 hours of battery life, providing unmatched versatility and mobility in a lighter, more refined design.

 

Pricing 

 

Product Suggested Retail Price

(inclusive of GST)

Surface Pro Configurations
Intel® Core™ m3, 128 GB SSD, 4GB RAM, Intel® HD Graphics 615 S$1,188
Intel® Core™ i5, 128 GB SSD, 4GB RAM, Intel® HD Graphics 620 S$1,488
Intel® Core™ i5, 256 GB SSD, 8GB RAM, Intel® HD Graphics 620 S$1,788
Intel® Core™ i7, 256 GB SSD, 8GB RAM, Intel® IrisTM Plus Graphics 640 S$2,288
Intel® Core™ i7, 512 GB SSD, 16GB RAM, Intel® IrisTM Plus Graphics 640 S$3,188
Accessories
Surface Pro Type Cover

(Available in Black)

S$199
Surface Pro Signature Type Cover

(Available in Platinum, Burgundy and Cobalt Blue)

S$249
Surface Pen

(Available in Black, Platinum, Burgundy and Cobalt Blue)

S$148
Microsoft Surface Arc Mouse

(Available in Light Gray, Burgundy, Cobalt Blue. Black available as the Microsoft Arc Mouse.)

S$118