Monday, September 10, 2007

IgniteAsia Challenge Ends South Asia Leg

(This article was first published last March 4, 2001 in the old version of

Last September 19, 2000, local dotcoms went to The Peninsula to submit their entries to the IgniteAsia Challenge.

The contest for non-public Internet companies seeking funding, concluded last February 8, 2001 with the announcement that Vasunas and Nexlabs have won the prestigious six month competition that spanned eleven countries and 260 companies.

Demonstrating a superior quality in the presentation of their businesses, the two companies were selected last night at a gala dinner by a panel of judges and venture capitalists in the second challenge of the Ignite series. Vasunas won Category A, for companies with at least one round of external investor financing in excess of US$200,000, while NexLabs was the winner in Category B, for companies with less than US$200,000 in outside financing.

Winner of Category A, Vasunas, produces a series of attractive animated characters lined up especially for its users across mobile and Internet platforms. Breathing life into these characters is a combination of artificial intelligence, natural language learning, data mining as well as decision support. According to Mr Johnny Lau, CEO of Vasunas, the awards were an honour for the tremendous work and dedication given by the staff. Vasunas is thrilled to have won such a well recognised Award. With such strong competition for IgniteAsia, I would have to put down the small edge we gained to the dedication and commitment of all the staff at Vasunas.

Winner of Category B, NexLabs, is a specialist technology solution provider, developing the next generation of Intelligent Messaging tools. NexLabs TrackEngine consists of a patent-pending Content Analysis and Differential Engine that allows users to monitor any website and be automatically alerted of new content through their emails or mobile WAP devices. For Mr Raymond Wong, CEO of NexLabs, the Award signifies a platform to build the profile of the Company. Winning the IgniteAsia Challenge represents the opportunity to be exposed in ways we had never imagined. It will not only enabled NexLabs to meet with potential investors and raise our profile, but has also helped tremendously in some of those non-tangible areas such as presentation and networking skills.

The competition ran in two legs using Hong Kong as the hub for the first (North Asia) leg, and Singapore as the hub for the second (South Asia) leg. On the South Asia leg among the countries competing are Bangalore, Bangkok, Kuala Lumpur, Singapore, Jakarta and Manila.

Philippine-based entries and didn't made it to the final round.

Following the success of the first two IgniteAsia challenges the Quintus Group has announced that it will be launching IgniteIndia and IgniteAustralia this year and will be returning to South East Asia in 2002.

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