Category: News

BondbloX raises US$6 million in Series B funding round – Beacon VC, the corporate venture arm of Thailand’s Kasikornbank, joins as new investor

Posted on by beaconvcadmin

Singapore-based Fintech BondEvalue Pte. Ltd. has added new investor Beacon Venture Capital, the corporate venture arm of Thailand’s Kasikornbank, to its cap table as part of a US$6m Series B round. Beacon Venture Capital joins existing shareholders MassMutual Ventures and Citigroup who also participated in the round.

Other investors include existing shareholders Potato Productions, a company helmed by entrepreneur Lee Han Shih, and Octava, a Singapore-based family office.

The latest round follows a Series A raise of US$6m in 2021. This additional funding will allow the Company to scale BondbloX Bond Exchange (BBX), its digital exchange for trading fractional and full-size bonds, as well as grow its international expansion to Gujarat International Finance Tec-City (GIFT City) in India, which recently went live.

Powered by distributed ledger technology, BondbloX enables investors to buy and sell bonds in denominations of US$1,000 instead of the usual US$200,000, and through a public exchange where prices are highly transparent.

BBX has seen strong interest from global clients since launching the platform to individual investors last month. BBX also has future plans to list US Bonds (Treasuries as well as Corporate Bonds) on the platform.

This announcement follows the announcement made last month that Citi is the first digital custodian participant of BondbloX Bond Exchange (BBX) for the institutional market. The partnership will allow Citi’s clients that meet certain criteria to become BBX participants and begin trading bonds (both fractionalised and full-sized) almost immediately.

“We are immensely honoured to welcome Beacon VC to our Series B round, as well as other new and existing shareholders including Citi and MassMutual Ventures,” said Dr. Rahul Banerjee, Co-Founder and CEO. “The bond market is broken globally, and BondbloX is on a mission to allow individual investors the same access to the market that institutional firms enjoy. We look forward to working together with Beacon VC and other investors to redefine Bond investing” he added.

In joining the recent round Thanapong Na Ranong, Managing Director of Beacon VC, said, “BondbloX is truly innovating Bond investing and disrupting an asset class which has lagged in digitization. The use of distributed ledger technology coupled with traditional financial custodians excites us and has great potential to re-shape the bond market for all.”

Henry Salmon, Head of Investments, Securities Services, Citi, said: “The digitization of markets, assets and processes is an accelerating industry trend and a key investment theme for Citi. We are delighted to continue our investment in BondbloX. I believe their embrace of new technology and the innovation in the bond market has delivered a unique value proposition.”

About BondbloX

Founded in 2016, we are a team of debt capital market bankers and technologists, spread across Singapore, India and Mexico, working to realize one vision – provide easy access to bonds for all investors. The BondbloX Bond Exchange is the world’s first fractional bond exchange, regulated as a Recognized Market Operator by the Monetary Authority of Singapore. We are backed by Citi and MassMutual Ventures as investors. Additional information may be found at

Source: BondbloX

Beacon VC 2023 H1 Update

Posted on by [email protected]

2023 has been keeping Beacon VC very busy with exciting and motivating challenges. In this mid-year update, Beacon VC wishes to bring you our observations on the VC landscape, an update to our fund thesis, as well as news about our latest transactions, research publications, and up-coming events.

H1 2023 in review

Valuation adjustments have been and will still be in motion

The global recession was triggered by slowdowns in large economies, increased geo-political risks, staggering inflation, and shrinking consumer spending, which has resulted in sluggish performance from startups. The overall market has witnessed a decline in startup valuations, driven by a rise in downrounds and flat rounds (by up to 18% and 9%, respectively, in recent fundraising). Conversely, the proportion of startups raising at increased valuations relative to their past rounds decreased to 71% in Q1 20231. Notably, late-stage startups have significantly contributed to this decline. Investors and analysts alike have noted that the high valuations that the market experienced in Y2021 are unlikely to be seen again soon.

Beacon VC believes that the correction will persist through the next few quarters, especially within emerging markets. 

Beacon VC has also noticed increased usage of public multiples by other fund managers in their valuation approach, with the belief that most private companies will eventually be subjected to public multiples, and the growth of the startups under this difficult economic period may not justify private premiums.

Global CVC putting brakes on investment, except in Asian and some EU market

Global corporate venture capital (CVC) funding has slowed down and is facing challenges due to geopolitical tension, inflation, and economic instability2. In Q1 2023, funding declined 12% QoQ, reaching a five-year low. This drop is in line with the broader decline in global venture funding, which fell by 13% QoQ.  Funding experienced a decline across various sectors, including fintech, retail tech, and digital health. The most significant drop was in fintech, decreasing by 48% QoQ to $7.8B (lowest level since 2017). CVC-backed retail tech funding also dropped below $1B for the first time since Q4 2017, falling from $1.3B in Q1 2023 to $0.9B in Q2 2023.

However, there have been some positive signals in Q2 2023 that the venture market has started to rebound.  Venture funding increased by 4% QoQ for the first time since Q3 2021, reaching $14.6 billion. In Asia, where 40% of the transactions were carried out, deal count also increased for the first time since Q1’22. Germany followed a similar trend, seeing a remarkable quadruple increase in CVC-backed funding compared to Q1 2023, resulting in a record-breaking high of 36 deals.  Positive signals can also be seen in the increase in  CVC-backed mega-rounds (rounds larger than $100M).

Thai CVCs and ecosystem players have worked hard to keep Thai ecosystem ablaze 

The VC landscape in Thailand has long been dominated by CVCs. Thai CVCs have closed more deals than other institutional VCs by twofold3.  The investment focus of the CVCs tends to be later stage companies that are ready to collaborate with the business units, as most CVCs look for strategic investments. Given this focus, little capital from CVCs is flowing to pre-seed to seed stage startups. Coupled with a lack of early stage institutional investors in Thailand, this has resulted in a funding gap for early-stage startups in the Thai market.

In order to mitigate the funding gap, government agencies such as NIA and DEPA have launched several initiatives for Thai startups. These programs include demo days for startups to present themselves to potential investors (e.g. Growth 4 by NIA Demo Day), as well as grants or direct investments into startups (e.g. dVenture and Digital Startup Fund). Government agencies are partnering with a variety of private sector players to stimulate interest and activity in the Thai ecosystem. 

Corporate interest in AI/ML technology and impact-driven companies is also becoming more prevalent4. AI/ML technology has the potential to disrupt several industries and is expected to have a profound impact on productivity and daily life.. Additionally, as the world becomes more and more concerned about sustainability, impact investment becomes integral to increasing funding to companies who can generate positive and measurable impact (both social and environmental) in addition to achieving financial return.   

Funds getting more sophisticated in looking at ESG/ incorporating ESG metric

The idea of profitability as the only guiding principle of investment is giving way to an increased focus on integrating ESG (Environmental, Social, and Governance) performance into every step of the investment-making processes, from selection, due diligence, and valuation, all the way to deal execution. According to EY, 26% of investors decided not to invest with a manager in 2022 because of inadequate ESG policies. More specifically, 53% of hedge funds/PEs have incorporated ESG philosophies into their investment process and 20% of VCs currently take ESG into account when making investment5

Consequently, startups looking for venture capital funding will have to follow suit and integrate good ESG practices into their strategies and operations. While this may sound like an additional burden, there are long-run benefits, as ESG regulations are getting implemented more strictly and public markets are focusing more on sustainability.

ESG due diligence can extend beyond just the startup itself. Investors may also review ESG compliance of the companies’ suppliers and customers to determine the holistic ESG risk of the investment6. ESG risks are increasingly embedded into the financial valuation of the company because of potential harm from regulatory penalties or reputational damage affecting sales. Apart from valuation considerations, startups might also be asked to sign representations and warranties regarding ESG compliance. 


Beacon VC’s Growing Investment Mandate

This January, Beacon VC expanded our investment mandate to include impact investment. Beacon VC currently has three mandates: the Synergistic Fund, the Opportunistic Fund, and the Beacon Impact Fund.

  • Synergistic Fund: Invest in growth stage startup companies to promote synergistic relationship between the startup and KBank. These companies must demonstrate strong strategic fit with KBank, in addition to operational and technical excellence.
  • Opportunistic Fund: Invest in emerging startup companies that are on path to become game changers for the financial services industry. These companies must be enabled by a scalable business model and robust technology, including but not limited to cloud computing, blockchain, or AI/ML.
  • [New] Beacon Impact Fund: Invest in emerging startup companies that have strong intentions to solve the world’s most pressing ESG problems. These companies must demonstrate that the intended impact is core to its financially feasible business model.

To give more color to the impact fund, Beacon VC believes that if we give people the tools to make good decisions and reward businesses for making good decisions, thereby encouraging businesses to explicitly internalize the cost of externalities, we can create positive impact because everyone will make decisions that create a better world.

Through our investments within the Beacon Impact Fund, Beacon VC hopes to achieve tangible impact in the following areas:

  • Environment: Slow the rate of climate change and move towards a more sustainable economy to reduce waste and unsustainable business practices (such as over-production and reliance on non-decomposable materials) by encouraging the mass adoption of green technology/sustainable practices by both consumers and businesses 
  • Social: Improve the quality of life for all people by breaking the poverty cycle, promoting equitable economic growth at all societal levels, and ensuring equal access to necessities under the human rights framework
  • Governance: Promote fairness, ethical practices, protection of vulnerable stakeholders, and transparency for any business activities, and empower consumers and other stakeholders with sufficient information to make informed decisions. 


Beacon VC transactions within H1 2023

Approved deals

The first half of 2023 has been a busy yet exciting time for Beacon VC. At the moment, Beacon VC has gotten approval for six new investments. Out of the six, four investments have already completed closing, while the other two investments are still in the closing process.

Completed Deals

  • [Direct] Algbra: A Shariah-compliant neobank. Algbra aims to improve financial inclusion to Islamic communities across the globe, starting in the UK, which is its home country. Algbra’s Shariah-compliant core-banking-as-a-service is poised to help Islamic Banks worldwide digitize.
  • [Fund] Wavemaker Impact: Wavemaker Impact has the ambition to decarbonize the globe by incubating startups that can reduce 10% of global carbon emissions. Wavemaker has extensive experience in startup investments and hopes to bring their expertise to solve one of the world’s most imminent problems.
  • [Fund] Quona Opportunity Fund: Quona is a global leader in the financial inclusion space. The fund covers all emerging markets from Asia, Africa, to Latin America.
  • [Fund] Siam Capital: This female-founded fund, run by Sita Chantramonkrasri, is making investments to create new consumption infrastructure, thereby helping consumers make more responsible choices for the society and the planet, starting in North America, one of the world’s largest consumer markets.

Deals in Closing Process

  • [Direct] Solar rooftop solution provider: This Thailand-grown company provides comprehensive solutions for businesses to plan, install, and monitor their solar power usage. The company has strong ties with dominant real estate and residential developers in Thailand.
  • [Direct] Bond fractionalization investment platform: This Singaporean company wants to make bond investment more accessible to retail investors. It leverages the blockchain technology to fractionalize corporate bonds and make initial ticket size up to 90% smaller.


Approved exit within H1 2023

Photo credit: LINEMAN Wongnai

Beacon VC also made the fourth exit in our portfolio – a strategic acquisition of FoodStory by Lineman Wongnai. This exit is in line with the bigger exit trend within the Thai market, whereby the majority of exit opportunities for Thai startups would be strategic acquisition.


Published researches in H1 2023

This year we have been busy familiarizing ourselves with the inner workings of the ESG and Impact Investing landscape. As part of this journey, Beacon VC published three articles in this area that might interest or benefit our readers: Digital Inequality, Economy Post- Carbon Tax, and Intersection of ESG and Blockchain. More articles to be published this year will focus on themes of Sustainable Finance, and roles of startup in ESG transition.


Things to look forward to in H2 2023

The second half of 2023 is full of exciting community building events hosted or sponsored by Beacon VC. Below are some of the events that we want to highlight:

Coinfest Bali Side-Event Sponsorship with APAC DAO

Coinfest Asia is Asia’s immersive web3 festival. Coinfest Asia 2023 converges Web2 and Web3 industries to explore real-world insights and valuable connections through an immersive festival experience.

Held at a casual cliff top venue in Bali, the event will give all participants a platform to engage and network in a unique and casual setting. Coinfest Asia 2023 is hosted by Coinvestasi, Indonesia’s #1 crypto media (an Indonesia Crypto Network company).

KATALYST Startup Launchpad 2023

The KATALYST Startup Launchpad is an incubation program in partnership with Stanford University since 2019. It aims to empower Thai startups through a nine-week intensive program focused on tech industries such as FinTech, ESG, AI, HealthTech, and enterprise solutions. The primary goal of the program is to help startups improve their business operations and achieve sustainable growth.

The Launchpad program provides valuable knowledge on building a startup, covering various aspects such as forming effective work teams, establishing a solid business foundation, and implementing strategies for business expansion. Additionally, it offers the opportunity for collaborations with leading partners, including Microsoft Thailand, AWS, True Digital Park, and others.

By supporting and nurturing these startups, KATALYST reinforces KBank’s commitment to strengthening the Thai entrepreneurial ecosystem and fostering a sustainable economy. For more information, visit the official website at:

Author: Woraphot Kingkawkantong (Ping)

Contributors: Warittha Chalanonniwat (Paeng)Wanwares Boonkong (Pin), Supamas Bunmee (Jae), Benjamas Tusakul (Air)

Editor: Krongkamol Deleon (Joy)



Beacon VC announces its new fund “Beacon Impact Fund”, Leads the way for ESG

Posted on by beaconvcadmin

Beacon Venture Capital (Beacon VC), the corporate venture arm of KASIKORNBANK, has just announced that it is launching the Beacon Impact Fund, a $30M impact investment fund.  The fund will make equity investments in for-profit startups seeking to create positive impact on ESG issues.  Beacon will look to invest in startups tackling a broad array of problems, but key areas of interest include:

  • Environmental Issues: Decarbonization, Waste Reduction, and Climate Adaptation
  • Social Issues: Financial and Digital Inclusion, Financial and Digital Literacy, and Access to Health Care 
  • Governance Issues: Consumer Protection, Supply Chain Visibility, and Business Transparency

The fund is targeting startups that can create quantifiable, sustainable, and scalable impact to one or more of the UN’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals.  Like Beacon’s past investments, the impact fund will invest in post-revenue companies with demonstrated customer traction and high scalability.

Mr. Thanapong Na Ranong, Managing Director of Beacon Venture Capital, said that “it is clear that the whole world needs to come together to support sustainable change.  As a long-time leader in the Thai venture capital industry, we see a great opportunity to support passionate entrepreneurs, both in Thailand and throughout the region, who are looking to make a difference in the world.  We firmly believe that consumers want to support sustainability and inclusivity, and that technology can make it easier for them to express their preferences and incentivize businesses to consider both the positive and negative impact from their operations.”  

He noted that governments, financial institutions, and large corporations are all seeking new solutions to help them achieve ESG goals, and startups are well positioned to develop new innovations to help accelerate the shift to a sustainable economy.  Mr. Thanapong Na Ranong added that “as a CVC, we believe that driving conversation and collaboration between startups and large corporations like KASIKORNBANK can magnify the impact that these innovative solutions have on Thailand and the world.  Our hope is to inspire investors and institutions to take a proactive approach to creating impact, and to support new generations of innovators to solve the planet’s biggest problems.”

While investing in positive social impact through the new Beacon Impact Fund, Beacon noted that ESG risk and its impact is important for companies in all industries.Therefore, Beacon is also continuing to work with all of its existing portfolio companies to encourage sustainable behavior and consider their impact on the environment and the world.  

The Beacon Impact Fund is part of KASIKORNBANK’s overall sustainability strategy and leadership vision in the field of ESG finance.  Both Beacon and KASIKORNBANK are committed to upholding ESG principles and paving the way for Thailand’s transition into the new sustainable world.

Venture capital arms under 2 leading Thai banks, Kasikornbank and Bank of Ayudhya, participate in the Seed round of Forward DeFi

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Forward, a Thai digital asset and blockchain startup focusing on protocol development for decentralized derivative exchange and DeFi platform, has successfully closed its USD 5 million seed round within just 6 months of fundraising, despite severe economic uncertainty and high volatility in the digital asset landscape.

The round was led by RPVAF-1, a global VC fund under Primestreet Capital, with participation from

  • Beacon Venture Capital from Kasikornbank;
  • KASIKORN X from Kasikornbank;
  • Krungsri Finnovate from Bank of Ayudhya, a member of the Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group (MUFG); and

together with Ratanakorn Technology Group, GBV Capital and Varys Capital who have confirmed their investments earlier in this round.

Chanon Charatsuttikul, Co-founder and CEO of Forward, revealed that Forward is the world’s first DeFi project to receive investments from global funds and two major Thai banks. “I believe that there is hope for Thailand to become a center of innovation and technology. We have investors who are ready to support new talents. The closing of this seed round, for me, is the beginning of a big challenge for the team to maximize our potential and grow the organization, and help make Thailand stand out as a country of innovation, just like western countries.

“The majority of trading volume occurs at Binance, the world’s largest crypto exchange, and it mainly comes from derivative products. The trading volume of derivative products is approximately 3 times larger than the spot volume and it is still growing. Thus, Forward is focusing on developing a decentralized derivative platform, which is non-custodial with a system that prohibits transactions from sanctioned countries and addresses.  We have a strong team backed by PhDs working day and night to develop a newly invented protocol, called the Automated Position Hedger (APH), which is unlike anything seen before. In addition, we always take it very seriously in terms of legal issues, accounting standards, and the safety of the investors’ assets,” Chanon added.

Asst. Prof. Dr. Udomsak Rakwongwan, Co-founder and Advisor, added that “We aim to develop Forward to be a ‘One Stop Service’ protocol, solving limitation and pain points in DeFi economy. It will be a secure and easy-to-use platform where users can earn sustainable investment returns. This means that the return generated to investors is a result of a solid and sustainable business model that was carefully designed for long-term operation. Our user-friendly interface will reduce the barrier to onboard new users to the blockchain space. For every single line of our coding, smart contract technical auditing is required and it will be performed by at least 2 trusted auditors.”

Supavat Nam Cholvanich, Co-founder and Partner of PrimeStreet Capital, the lead investor of this round, said: “With our finance background, we have a good interest in financial-related blockchain technology. Digital asset is a high volatility landscape, and we highly emphasize the importance of safety and sustainability of the protocol. Our team focus deeply on the tightness of all operating logic and, at the same time, look for a platform with meaningful enhanced features that has the potential to stand out and elevate DeFi ecosystem. We believe Forward is well set up and its DeFi platform should easily navigate through market volatility and grow sustainably in the digital asset world.”


About Forward

Forward is a digital asset and blockchain startup, founded by a group of developers and tech researchers. The founders’ prior success was the launch of a well-known regulated crypto exchange in Thailand. Forward is currently developing a newly invented protocol for decentralized derivative trading, where short and long positions are matched against each other using an advanced protocol named Automated Position Hedger (APH). Forward DDEX acts as a counterparty to instantly match users’ long and short perpetual Futures orders. As a result, Forward does not have limit order books and does not require market makers. The risk of the platform acting as a users’ counter-party is completely hedged using the tokens in the lending and borrowing pools.

Kasikornbank to support FlowAccount in giving out free online accounting software for KBank SME customers, assisting SMEs to brave the Covid-19 pandemic

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Kasikornbank aims to support Thai SMEs to grow sustainably amidst the Covid-19 pandemic by giving out 1,000 FlowAccount software packages, with a total value of 3 million Baht, to KBank SME customers. This campaign hopes to boost SME’s operation efficiency and awareness of its financial health, thereby increasing the ability to access capital and resilience to tolerate future crises. FlowAccount is an online accounting software startup backed by Kasikornbank’s own venture capital – Beacon VC.

Mr. Pipavat Bhadranavik, Executive Vice President of Kasikornbank, reveals that the recent pandemic significantly affected Thai SMEs’ financial vitality, plaguing their daily operations and disrupting their cash flow. SMEs must be well-equipped with the knowledge of their company’s financial health and make an informed strategy to manage their liquidity. Kasikornbank is, therefore, looking to support its SMEs by offering an easy-to-use online accounting software so that the SME owners can be more efficient and managing their businesses anywhere and anytime.

Kasikornbank will give FlowAccount software to 1,000 KBank SME customers without any charges for one year, totaling in campaign value of 3 million Baht. Kasikornbank is looking to offer this campaign to SMEs in many industries, including but not limited to wholesalers, retailers, service, transportation, and communication.

Mr. Kridsada Chutinanton, Co-founder and CEO of FlowAccount, commented that Kasikornbank has long been the champion of Thai SMEs, allowing the bank to truly understand the pain points of the SMEs in doing accounting and the problems that lax accounting practice can create. FlowAccount is in the right sweet spot to solve those pains. The software is purely cloud-based and will help SME owners to do accounting at ease. By issuing or paying an invoice on FlowAccount, the system will auto synchronize the transaction and book-keep the transaction, then aggregating all the transactions into a summary that the SME owners can use to supplement business decisions – all viewable on the website and mobile phone. The software also shortens the time to do accounting and reduces mistakes compared to doing it on Excel or using pen and paper.

Mr. Thanapong Na Ranong, Managing Director of Beacon VC, further noted that Beacon VC invested in FlowAccount since 2017. FlowAccount has, over the years, always strived to innovate and develop new ways to serve the needs of SME owners. This collaboration will help the KBank SME customers do better accounting and grow the FlowAccouunt customer base. This mutual benefit between Kasikornbank or its customers and Startup is one of the many objectives that Beacon VC hopes to achieve when making an investment.

Founded in 2015, FlowAccount is an easy-to-use cloud accounting solution designed specifically for Thai small businesses. Our fintech software helps small business owners with invoicing, expense tracking, payroll, and reporting. Our goal is to make world-class software that helps small businesses save time, improve productivity, and ultimately increase their probability of success.

Founded in 2017, Beacon VC is a wholly-owned corporate venture capital fund of Kasikornbank PLC (SET: KBANK), a leading commercial bank in Thailand with the highest mobile penetration and largest SME base. With an initial fund of $30 million, Beacon VC focuses on strategic investments in early to growth-stage technology startups covering not only financial technology (fintech) but also consumer internet and enterprise technology. In 2020, Beacon VC expanded its fund size to $185 million.

Beacon VC Invests in Robowealth, leading Thais toward the Capital Market with Wealth Tech Solutions, targeting 2021 with the Total AuM of 30 Billion Thai Baht.

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Left: Mr. Chonladet Khemarattana, Group CEO of Robowealth. Right: Mr. Thanapong Na Ranong, Managing Director of Beacon Venture Capital

Beacon Venture Capital (Beacon VC), the corporate venture capital arm of KASIKORNBANK PLC. announces the Series A investment in Robowealth, a top-notch wealth tech start-up. This investment aims to leverage business strengths of both KBank and Robowealth to drive inclusiveness in the capital market by solving three primary issues that prevent Thais from investing, including the lack of time, lack of knowledge, and lack of capital, with the target of the total investment of 30 billion Thai Baht by 2021.

MrThanapong Na Ranong, Managing Director of Beacon Venture Capital, said that Beacon VC focuses on investing in high-potential start-ups whose innovations and services can deliver real value to KBank customers through the creation of new financial products or services. While we would normally scout for new investments and find collaboration potentials with the business units, this is the first time that we invest in a start-up that already has a working relationship with KBank. KBank and Robowealth, together with Lu International, launched the application FinVest in late 2020.

Beacon VC announces its investment in Series A round in Robowealth, a top-notch wealth tech start-up in Thailand. Robowealth provides complete solutions for robo-advisory and mutual fund investment. This investment will reinforce strong on-going business collaborations with the company to offer Thais new investment tools and alternative investment products, something that the Thai investment market needs, especially when the interest rates for traditional saving products are low. Robowealth’s outstanding expertise in wealth tech services will help Thais have their investment goals met more easily.

MrChonladet KhemarattanaGroup CEO of Robowealth, reveals that Robowealth Group aims to liberalize the Thai financial industry by providing typical Thai people efficient investment opportunities. Currently, only 5% of Thai from 70 million population invest through mutual funds and stock exchange. Robowealth’s vision lies within the cooperation to build a stable financial ecosystem under the concept of “Empower Future Financial Ecosystem” through the Business to Consumer (B2C) and Business to Business (B2B) schemes. This ecosystem will ultimately help Thais to achieve financial freedom sustainably.

Presently, Robowealth plays an integral part in developing and offering two prominent investment applications under Robowealth Mutual Fund Brokerage Securities. Both can help Thai people gain access to mutual funds portfolio with only 1,000 baht of minimum investment. By design, each of them focuses on different target groups with distinctive and unique product positionings. Starting with odini, the first robo-advisor in Thailand debuted in 2018, the application targets ordinary people looking for a simple way to invest through automated ready-made mutual funds portfolios. The robo-advisor timely adjust the asset allocation to match with the market condition and customer’s risk appetite. The customer can either make a lump-sum investment amount or pre-specify the monthly contributions (DCA: Dollar Cost Average). Two years after the launch, Robowealth has enhanced the odini with a more premium service under the odini BLACK sub-brand integrated into the existing odini application to serve the mass affluent segment better. The second application is FinVest, which debuted in late 2020 as Thailand’s first curated mutual funds investment application. The investment committee, which consists of fund managers and investment analysts, has the primary responsibility of selecting a set of suitable mutual funds from both the domestic and global investment universe based on a thematic investment framework. Then, these featured funds will be directly served to the customer with the precise and digestible content to make the final investment decision on his own. FinVest is the collaboration among Robowealth, KASIKORNBANK, and Lu International, a world-class fintech company.

Furthermore, Robowealth also provides other services through its subsidiaries, including high-touch wealth management solutions for high-net-worth customers under Robowealth Investment Advisory Securities and professional fintech software development solutions under Codefin company, which is behind the success of various financial institutions.

Mr. Chonladet shares the insight regarding the effect of the COVID-19 situation that Robowealth customers benefit from the investment diversification to global markets. The robo-advisor could provide a decent return by allocating into Chinese and US equities as many tech stocks greatly benefited from the lock-down. The pandemics also encourage more people worldwide to quickly adopt the digital platform, which is the long-term benefit for wealth tech businesses. The Thai financial institution becomes more aware of the inevitable digital transformation, which provides an excellent opportunity for Robowealth to respond to the needs through Business to Business (B2B) cooperation.

Mr. Thanapong added that one of the main interesting characteristics of successful Thai fintech companies is that their business and offering model doesn’t aim to disrupt financial institutions, but instead aim to collaborate with those institutions by joining each parties’ unique strength to add value to customers and synergistically grow.

Mr. Chonladet makes his closing remarks that Robowealth aims to reduce the economic inequality in Thai society as the country faces one of the world’s worst wealth distribution. Although the income distribution is not that severe, the high cost of living leaves typical Thai households not enough money to save or invest, resulting in an always wider wealth gap between the rich and the poor. Finding effective investment channels is still considered a big challenge for those who have a little cash surplus. Therefore, the core principle of Robowealth is to co-create the financial ecosystem, which enables Thais to start investing with minimal funds through convenient, user-friendly, and reliable channels regardless of the service ownership. The service provider could be Robowealth, Robowealth’s business partner, or even any other company. It does not matter which company gains the market share if Thai people can access efficient investment channels. There should be no competitor in helping people to do so. Also, Robowealth strongly supports the promotion of financial literacy to the youth to shape the right perception towards investment, paving the way of becoming successful investors in the future.

About Robowealth Group

Robowealth Group, the digital investment service provider or wealth teach leader, launched the first roboadvisory service in ThailandThe company currently has two applications with authorization from the Securities and Exchange Commission of Thailand, under odini and FinVestWith the strong reputation of delivering highquality services, the company is essentially gaining business partnerships from leading financial institutions and conglomerates in ThailandRobowealth aims to modernize the Thai financial industry to enable every Thai individual to get proper access to an efficient investment opportunity. The companys vision is to empower the future financial ecosystem via both BusinesstoConsumer (B2Cand BusinesstoBusiness (B2Brelationships.

About Beacon Venture Capital

Founded in 2017, Beacon VC is a whollyowned corporate venture capital fund of KASIKORNBANK PLCBeacon VC focuses on strategic investments in early to growthstage technology startups covering not only financial technology (fintechbut also consumer internet and enterprise technologyCurrently, Beacon VC has a fund size of $135 million and has invested in several technology startups such as FlowAccount, Eventpop, Jitta, Grab, InstaReM and Aspire.

Beacon VC receives ‘Investor of the Year’ Prime Minister Award: National Startup 2020 in recognition of its capability to bolster growth for local startups

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At STARTUP THAILAND x INNOVATION THAILAND EXPO 2020 by the National Innovation Agency (NIA), Mr. Thanapong Na Ranong (left), Managing Director of Beacon Venture Capital Co., Ltd. (Beacon VC), KBank’s venture capital arm, received the “Prime Minister Award: National Startup 2020” in the “Investor of the Year” category from ADJ. Prof. Anek Laothamatas, Minister of Higher Education, Science, Research and Innovation of Thailand.

The award recognizes Beacon VC as a venture capital investor that has the capability to bolster growth for local startups, is an important contributor to the development of Thailand startup ecosystem, and makes impact on a national level with its investments while advancing the level of domestic investors to an international level.

Beacon VC’s recent investments include payment technology provider Digio, blue-collar staffing platform Workmate, SME neobank Aspire and rental property management platform Horganice.


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Techsauce (Thai)

Eventpop empowers online ticketing for six zoos under Zoological Park Organization

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Online ticketing for six zoos under Zoological Park Organization under the Royal Patronage of His Majesty the King – Khao Kheow Open Zoo, Chiang Mai Zoo, Nakhon Ratchasima Zoo, Songkhla Zoo, Ubon Ratchathani Zoo and Khon Kaen Zoo – is now available on Eventpop.

Additionally, the Ministry of Natural Resource and Environment Thailand has announced the six zoos will be open for visiting free of charge during 15 – 30 June 2020. Thereafter, entry fees will be on a 50% discount from July onwards until the COVID-19 situation in Thailand is considered to be better.

In the beginning, up to 2,000 visitors will be allowed per day at each zoo, which will have two sessions between 08:00-12:00 and 12:00-17:00, and advanced booking is required via online at Eventpop or phone. All visitors are requested to comply with the ‘Zoo New Norm’ protocol, including wearing masks at all times within the zoo, allowing temperature checks by the zoo and maintain physical distancing between each other.



  • Khao Kheow Open Zoo 038 318 444
  • Chiang Mai Zoo 053 221 179
  • Nakhon Ratchasima Zoo 083 372 0404
  • Songkhla Zoo 074 598 555
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SMEs can run payrolls online via FlowPayroll app

Posted on by admin_beacon_2024

In brief:

  • Thailand’s SMEs are the “backbone of Thailand’s economy,” but their cost of managing employee payroll and complying with regulations remains high.
  • COVID-era work-from-home practices have greatly created the demand for online payroll solutions among small businesses.
  • FlowAccount has partnered with KBank to offer online payroll process service via a web browser-based app, FlowPayroll.
  • FlowPayroll has already onboarded over 10,000 Thai SMEs

FlowAccount, one of many leading startups in Beacon VC’s portfolio, has recently launched an online payroll service aiming to empower Thai SMEs with more robust HR solutions. FlowPayroll is integrated with Kasikornbank’s K-Cash Connect Plus and helps entrepreneurs and small business owners seamlessly manage their HR headaches remotely, anywhere and anytime. The free trial period starts now.

COVID-19 forces business owners to pay deeper attention to cost-saving measures and ways to maintain liquidity. These business owners are also becoming more hands-on with day-to-day business operations from sales management, marketing, accounting, to payroll management. The rapid increase in the number of tasks that the owners have to manage drives stronger demand for remote business management tools.

Payroll management, the universal headache for business owners

Even the smallest businesses require payroll management. Without an in-house accountant or human resources department, this task automatically falls to business owners. Every month, business owners must handle sensitive and complicated salary information, while trying hard to meet monthly deadlines. However, there aren’t any existing low-cost tools in the market that can help business owners manage payroll in a reliable and time-efficient fashion.

“Many business owners open up a spreadsheet, type in employee names, and plug in some formulas to calculate social contributions and taxes. They’ll do transfers online to their employees, one by one. Some of them might even drive over to their bank to make the transfers,” says Kridsada Chutinaton, co-founder of FlowAccount. “They spend several hours a month on this and they still aren’t confident that their final figures are accurate.”

FlowAccount recognizes this pain point in the market and aims to address it.

“Most of our customers are new generation entrepreneurs who prefer to use online tools,” Chutinaton continues. “And as business owners, running their payroll is a headache. We developed our online payroll solution, FlowPayroll, in response to this. It makes calculations in essential salary items, generates important documents, and can easily be linked with online bank accounts to make salary payments.”

FlowPayroll is part of a suite of financial solutions for SMEs designed for easy and quick setup. Other tools include FlowAccount, a cloud-based financial accounting app, and an online credit application for GrabFinance.


FlowPayroll: An Online Payroll Solution for SMEs

FlowPayroll is an online, browser-based payroll program that helps business owners quickly and easily run their payroll. It also allows business owners to instantly see an overview of salary expenditures.

The main page of a FlowPayroll account is the Dashboard, which is a colorful visual summary of a business’s inflows and outflows. Key dimensions and numbers, such as salary or revenue, are shown in real-time using simple graphs to help owners assess the health of their business.

One of the most unique features of FlowPayroll is its secure link to K-Cash Connect Plus from KBank. Owners can use FlowPayroll to record their employee salary, and the system will automatically calculate tax deductions and provident fund contributions. Upon user authorization, the system then uploads required documents and salary amounts directly to the KBank payroll system. With one additional click, business owners make payroll bank transfers to multiple employees at once.

FlowPayroll users can opt to use its counterpart financial accounting solution, FlowAccount. Used together, payroll expenditures are automatically synced with FlowAccount’s financial records. The result is a more time-efficient way of to conduct payroll and financial accounting. It also gives an accurate and complete view of a business’s activities, so business owners are armed with the information they need to manage costs.

At present, over 10,000 businesses currently use FlowPayroll to pay over 70,000 employees.

FlowPayroll offers quick video tutorials as well as weekly free online courses to help new users get started.

Video: FlowPayroll (Thai language)

FlowPayroll runs on web browsers, and 30-day free-trials are available at currently. For more information, call +662026898 (Thai and English).

Founded in 2015, FlowAccount is an easy-to-use cloud accounting solution designed specifically for Thai small businesses. Our fintech software helps small business owners with invoicing, expense tracking, payroll, and reporting. Our goal is to make world-class software that helps small businesses save time, improve productivity, and ultimately increase their probability of success. 

Founded in 2017, Beacon VC is a wholly-owned corporate venture capital fund of Kasikornbank PLC (SET: KBANK), a leading commercial bank in Thailand with the highest mobile penetration and largest SME base. With an initial fund of $30 million, Beacon VC focuses on strategic investments in early to growth-stage technology startups covering not only financial technology (fintech) but also consumer internet and enterprise technology. In 2018, Beacon VC expanded its fund size to $135 million.

For additional information:
Ms. Saranrat Waikiat, Corporate Communications (Thai & English)
[email protected]
Tel. +66 85 156 5241

General inquiries:
FlowAccount Co., Ltd. (Bangkok, Thailand)
Tel: +6620268989

Digio joins Visa program to help Thai social commerce sellers accept digital payments

Posted on by admin_beacon_2024

Visa, the world’s leader in digital payments, today announced a program that makes it easier for Thai social commerce sellers (“sellers”) including small businesses and individual merchants to accept digital payments. The program is aimed at equipping homegrown sellers with the right tools to recover and grow stronger in the future.

Under the “Everyone Speaks Visa” program, Visa has partnered with leading FinTech companies in Thailand including DigioKBank Global Payment (KGP), Omise, Pay Solution and 2C2P to enable sellers to accept Visa payments. This means sellers will be able to accept Visa credit, debit, and prepaid cards whether they are selling on social media pages, virtual marketplaces or live chat platforms. The program also welcomes large and small businesses alike, who are looking to improve operational efficiency and customer experience with the acceptance of digital payments.

Suripong Tantiyanon, Country Manager for Visa Thailand, said: “Visa has always been a proud supporter of Thai businesses large and small, helping them to grow through technology and payment innovation. We’re acutely aware that support is particularly important right now for smaller players, such as micro-merchants and individual sellers, as the ecosystem continues to settle into a new normal. So that’s why we are leveraging the power of our network to bring together leading FinTechs to help this untapped segment gain access to digital payment platforms that are fast, convenient and secure.”

In Asia Pacific, eCommerce orders for web-only retailers grew by 23% year-on-year between March 22 to April 4. At the same time, store-based retailers saw their online orders surge by 82% during the same period as a result of store closures, limited in-store inventory and stay at home orders.

In Thailand, a Study conducted by Visa found that more than half of Thai consumers (54 per cent) said they have a more positive experience shopping online than shopping at a physical store. In addition, 67 per cent of Thai consumers surveyed said they are likely to increase their use of eCommerce. At the same time, 7 in 10 (69 per cent) Thais admitted that they are less likely to go back to cash, even after the pandemic ends, citing preference of credit cards, debit cards and mobile apps.

In 2019, over 34 million people in Thailand purchased consumer goods online, with a total market value of around 137 billion baht ($4.31 billion). Of all the payment methods, credit card is the most preferred (32 percent), followed by e-Wallet (25 per cent), bank transfer (20 per cent), cash (12 per cent) and others (11 per cent).

From today, sellers will be able to begin a simple onboarding process through Visa Thailand’s website. Sellers will be able to select which FinTech to partner with and once necessary documents are submitted they can begin accepting Visa payments within one day. The program coincides with the launch of an online marketing campaign that will highlight the benefits of accepting Visa, including speed, convenience and security for both sellers and buyers.

To encourage sellers to adopt digital payments, Visa is giving a 5,000-baht reward at the end of each month to the top 20 new sellers with the highest number of digital payment transactions. The program runs from today to December 2020.

“While today’s challenges may be new, Visa has been solving payment pain points for buyers and sellers for over 60 years. Collectively, our business and our partners are laser-focused on leading economic recovery efforts in the weeks and months ahead, helping businesses and individuals everywhere navigate through these common challenges. These small and individual businesses are the backbone of the Thai economy. We believe in the power of Visa’s network as a force for good, which is why we’re excited to launch the “Everyone Speaks Visa” program,” Suripong concluded.