Author: vivian

Singapore’s GIC make investments in International Self-Storage Operator StorageMart

StorageMart, a self-storage company based in the United States has welcomed new investors including Singapore sovereign wealth fund GIC, Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates’ private entity Cascade Investment, and other investors.

Founded in 1981, GIC is a leading global investment firm that manages Singapore’s foreign reserves. It is a global, long-term investor with more than US$100 billion in assets in more than 40 countries and has been an active participant across the US property market.

With this funding investment, the transaction will place StorageMart’s valuation at approximately US$2.7 billion and will allow the business to scale and expand its operations.

Following the investment, the company’s day-to-day management will continue to be led by Cris Burnam as the Chief Executive Officer, Mike Burnam as the President and Chief Investment Officer, and Ryan McKenzie as Chief Financial Officer.

StorageMart is one of the largest international self-storage company with 240 properties across three countries in the United States, the United Kingdom, and Canada. It owns, operates, and develops self-storage properties in which the majority is privately owned by Stanley Kroenke and the Burnam Family who founded StorageMart.

Established in 1999 and based in Columbia, StorageMart has been in the storage industry for three generations and operates a portfolio consisting of more than 15 million square feet of storage. It serves more than 75,000 self-storage customers and operates in Chinese, English, Punjabi, Quebecois French, and Spanish.

“The self-storage sector is rapidly evolving, and companies that can deploy technology, enhanced operations, and truly memorable customer experience are going to outperform,” said Chris Burnam, the CEO of StorageMart.

“To do this, scaling is a fundamental requirement. By combining the forces of Mr. Kroenke and our new partners GIC and Cascade Investment, StorageMart will be in an unrivaled position to achieve its growth strategies in both current and new markets,” Burnam added.

Citigroup was the exclusive financial advisor to StorageMart on the deal, while Kirkland & Ellis provided legal counsel.

A report from real estate service provider JLL has stated that the self-storage industry in the United States was impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, with a revenue drop in the second quarter of this year by 2.7 percent on-year, while expenses rose 3.4 percent and net operating income declined by 5.2 percent.

HokuApps Creates an Effective Solution for The Severely Hit Events Business During the Pandemic

SINGAPORE – October 13, 2020 /MarketersMedia/ — HokuApps, a global player in next-generation digital transformation services made it possible for That’s Innovative to come back stronger after the COVID-19 pandemic with a robust Events app. With the pandemic, severely affecting the events business by lockdowns and strict social distancing rules, That’s Innovative was able to partner with HokuApps to rapidly develop and deploy this solution.

With the aim of digitalizing events in the era of COVID-19, That’s Innovative commissioned HokuApps to create a mobile application that is able to help themselves and the other players in the event industry easily list their event services for consumers. The app also allows consumers to effortlessly look for available virtual events in the market that they can attend. According to the International Congress & Convention Association, Singapore has been the #1 meeting city in Asia-Pacific for 18 years – there are constant demands for cutting edge, effective technological tools.

Founded in 1999, That’s Innovative Pte Ltd is a leading Singapore-based full-service event management company. They excel at producing every conceivable public function – whether it’s convention exhibition booths, large-scale dinners and live performances, corporate team-building retreats, or community festivals and celebrations. That’s Innovative works with their clients each step of the way, from planning to execution, with every detail covered and more than two decades’ experience to anticipate potential problems before they happen.

HokuApps created an impressive mobile application that gives That’s Innovative the power to manage multiple events simultaneously, promote ticket sales, organize on-site staff, analyze and quantify success with robust backend metrics and even establish a new revenue stream to boost the company’s ROI. That’s Innovative can control every detail of event management including calendars & event listings, entertainment booking, ticketing, and tracking of attendance. The app “Event Elephant” is available for iOS and Android on the App Store and Google Play.

“That’s Innovative needed a way to organize and manage the many threads that go into creating a successful event,” explained Arif Gafar, Sales Director for HokuApps. “We were delighted to work for such a prominent player in the events management industry and to meet the challenges of their business with creative technological solutions.”

“We are satisfied with the app design and support provided by HokuApps,” said Adrian Ang, Managing Director of That’s Innovative. “It has always been our wish to create a customized mobile app to enhance our business functions. HokuApps was able to quickly turn our imagination to reality, providing us with an app with a beautiful interface and impressive power which will enhance both our business functions and our image in the competitive marketplace. HokuApps empowers organizations to usher in their digital transformation journey to better engage with customers, partners, and employees.

About HokuApps

HokuApps is the fastest growing technology platform that empowers organizations to develop innovative technology solutions incredibly fast. Headquartered in Singapore, the rapid application development platform has enhanced mobile and data integration capabilities to enable companies to speedily deploy mobile and web applications. HokuApps empowers organizations to usher in their digital transformation journey to better engage with customers, partners, and employees. HokuApps has done extensive work in digital transformation spanning many industries including healthcare, education, construction, finance, transportation and many more.

Contact Info:
Name: Anuradha S.M.
Email: Send Email
Organization: HokuApps

Chinese Drug Developer Hinova Pharmaceuticals Completes Series C Funding Round Worth $147 Million

Chengdu-based drug research firm Hinova Pharmaceuticals announced on Tuesday that it has completed its Series C funding round, securing nearly 1 billion yuan, which is about $147 million in US dollars.

This funding round sees a list of backers, which include state-owned Shenzhen Investment Holdings, Beijing’s Huarong Rongde Asset Management, Chinese clinical contract research organization (CRO) Hangzhou Tigermed, and Sinopharm-CICC Capital, a healthcare-focused private equity fund.

Other investors also include China-focused fund manager Infinity Group, Founder H Fund, an equity investment subsidiary of China’s Founder Securities, and DNV Capital, a venture capital firm that primarily invests in healthcare and intelligent technology fields.

The financing capital will be used to support multi-center clinical trials and to commercialize the firm’s drug candidates locally and internationally.

Founded in 2013, Hinova Pharmaceuticals is involved in the discovery, development, and industrialisation of drugs and the treatment of metabolic diseases and cancers.

The firm to date has a pipeline of 9 drug candidates including the HC-1119, which is an innovative androgen receptor antagonist developed to treat metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer (mCRPC). It is now in its Phase III of international multi-centre trials and the firm expects it to hit the global market in 2022.

Meanwhile, the firm is also looking to onboard a chief financial officer with preferred expertise in the city board’s biomedical listings and experience in IPOs in Hong Kong, which signals that it

So far this round follows from its Series B+ round held in January 2020, whereby Hinova had raised US$32 million from six institutional investors including Chinese PE GF Xinde Investment.

With the onset of the coronavirus, many Chinese pharmaceutical companies and healthtech startups in China have raised funding.

Just last month, we also witnessed XtalPi, a pharmaceutical company raising around US$318.8 million in its Series C funding round led by SoftBank’s Vision Fund 2, PICC Capital, and VC firm Morningside Venture Capital.

XtalPi is an algorithm-driven artificial intelligence (AI) healthtech company that is reinventing the industry’s approach to drug research and development with its Intelligent Digital Drug Discovery and Development (ID4) platform.

On the other hand, another biopharmaceutical startup Sinovent has also similarly reported securing a US$145 million Series C funding round led by Loyal Valley Innovation Capital in August 2020.

HokuApps Empowers HPH Transport to Better Serve Non-Emergency Medical Transportation During COVID-19

Illinois, United States – October 7, 2020 /MarketersMedia/ — When the entire global population was worried about the COVID-19 pandemic disaster, HokuApps LLC. enabled operations automation at HPH Transport by building a technology-based solution that allowed the latter to enable easier scheduling of medical transport for their clients, with regard to non-emergency medical needs. Given the present COVID-19 circumstances, this has helped both the overstretched healthcare facilities and their ill, elderly, and physically challenged patients.

Said, Sal Guagliardo, Senior Vice President, Operations, HPH Transport, “The deployment of this versatile apps is clearly a game changer in the present fraught times of COVID-19. It gives a fillip to our non-emergency medical transportation programs by enabling contactless, convenient and hassle-free transportation for their patients to enable them to keep their medical appointments. We are extremely satisfied with what HokuApps has developed for us”

HPH Transport reaches out to 120 healthcare facilities, helping them eliminate late arrivals and missed appointments, thereby helping improve patient care. It eliminates all inefficiencies about patient logistics leading to more efficient interactions and outcome with regard to the patients, leading to better operational and financial management.

According to Nand Kapoor, Director of HokuApps LLC., “We were quite sure that we wanted to provide an optimal technological solution via our platform that would help HPH Transport’s clients to easily and seamlessly view, book and track the medical transportation needs of patients needing to reach healthcare facilities to keep their appointments. What is more, the upgraded version of the web and mobile app allows patients to directly schedule a pickup as well.”

HokuApps was able to deliver exactly what the client required, on account of its nimble Mobile Application Development Platform (MADP) that facilitates quick application development helping in the digital transformation of businesses across segments. About HPH Transport, the success of this app in transforming the operational efficiency and patient satisfaction levels is clearly visible.

Where earlier delayed and missed appointments, constant rescheduling and cancellation of appointments were commonplace, the deployment of the app has almost eliminated these problems. In its place has come a seamless and integrated patient logistics system that ensures that the appointments are almost never missed and the patients are extremely happy with the level of ease of service received.

The fact that rides booked through this can be single stop as well as multi stop to pick up and drop off single or multiple patients to different locations adds to their versatility, even while the tracking system helps maintain control. By enabling warm and personal as well as timely transportation to the patients, the healthcare facilities can create immense goodwill among the later leading to many patient referrals. It is not surprising therefore, that the deployment of the app has meant a lot of happier patients and a much healthier bottom line for the healthcare facilities concerned.

About HokuApps

HokuApps is the fastest growing technology platform that empowers organizations to develop innovative technology solutions incredibly fast. Headquartered in Singapore, the rapid application development platform has enhanced mobile and data integration capabilities to enable companies to speedily deploy mobile and web applications. HokuApps empowers organizations to usher in their digital transformation journey to better engage with customers, partners, and employees. HokuApps has also done extensive work in digital transformation spanning many industries including healthcare, education, construction, finance, transportation and many more.

Contact Info:
Name: Anuradha S.M.
Email: Send Email
Organization: HokuApps LLC.

Shiok Meats Raises $12.6 millions in Series A to become World’s First to Introduce Cell-based Shrimp in the Alternative Protein Market

Shiok Meats, a Singapore cell-based meat company said today that it has raised its latest funding round at US$12.6 million that is led by Aqua-Spark, a sustainable aquaculture-focused investment vehicle.

The Series A funding round also saw participation by other investors including Singapore’s SEEDS Capital, South Korea’s tech investing family office Irongrey, Yellowdog, Japan’s Real Tech Fund, VegInvest, Beyond Impact and more.

Mike Velings and Amy Novogratz, the co-founders of Aqua-Spark commented on the investment saying that, “The cell-based animal protein industry has been on our radar for some time as once it is at scale it will have an enormous influence on food production efficiency, food safety, and the environment,”

“Shiok Meats is the first company in our portfolio to focus on shrimp production. We are excited to help shape this new and innovative industry, which we expect to have a huge impact on the future of seafood.”

Founded in 2018, Shiok Meats takes the stem cells from shrimp before multiplying them in a “culture media”, a solution filled with nutrients to create cell-based shrimp. The startup had its first public taste testing of cell-based shrimp dumpling (otherwise known as siew mai) and has received positive reviews for the taste and texture. This technology has also earned them a spot in Fast Company’s Top 10 most innovative companies in the Asia Pacific region.

With the latest round of funding, Shiok Meats said it will sustain the startup for at least 3 years and help in finance research and development.

A large part of the capital will also be used in the construction of its first commercial pilot plant to produce cultivated minced shrimp. This project is expected to be completed in 2022, thus making Shiok Meats the world’s first to introduce cultivated crustacean into the artificial meat market.

“We are really excited to be on the forefront of cell-based meats in Southeast Asia,” said Dr. Sandhya Sriram, one of the co-founder of Shiok Meats. According to the startup, cell-based production of seafood could be the solution to the problems faced in aquaculture industries, reducing greenhouse gas emissions and water consumption by as much as 96%.

However, one of the obstacles faced by Shiok Meats and other cell-based protein producers including Blue Nalu, Good Catch, and Wild Type stands at the price of getting products to market. Right now, cell-based protein is simply an expensive process which makes it impossible to get products to price parity with traditional seafood offerings.

Shiok’s prawn meat now costs US$3,500 per kg. But to make it accessible to restaurants and food manufacturers, the startup is looking to lower down the costs to US$50 per kg as it scales up production and finds alternatives of cheaper plant-based ingredients.

Moving forward, the food tech startup is looking to expand its product portfolio beyond cell-based shrimp meat. Specifically, it will also be looking to create cell-based shrimp flavoring paste and powder, a fully-formed 3D structured shrimp product, as well as cell-based lobster and crab in the next few years.

So far, Shiok Meats has reportedly raised US$20.2 million in total funding and a person familiar with the fund-raising said its post-money valuation is about US$50 million.

As more people become more aware and selective about nutrition and the environment, there is an increasing market of consumers looking for alternatives to traditional meat production.

This creates a momentum of startups and food giants like Impossible Foods and Beyond Meat that are raising huge fundings to expand into new markets, while other startups are working on laboratory-grown alternatives for customers that want to eat real meat and seafood that do not come from living animals.

“We can see so many new players coming up,” Dr Sriram said of the cell-based meat sector. “The next five years will be about who survives, who makes the cut and who is able to support companies like ours make that step over to large-scale manufacturing.”

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