SG Founder Grant

TRi5 Ventures rebrands to TRIVE, offers free administration of Startup SG Founder Grant

South-east Asian-focused TRi5 Ventures has rebranded to a new name TRIVE, with a new tagline to help great people build greater companies.

Christopher Quek, Managing Partner, shares in an email, “Over the last 7 years, my team and I have been actively investing and paying-it-forward to build a thriving startup ecosystem in Singapore and the region.

We have been inspired by the thousands of individuals, mentors, fellow VCs, partners, institutions, governments, friends and associates whom we have met and walked together with us in this incredible journey.

TRIVE represents our new aspirations for the future, while celebrating our past, challenging ourselves to progress and transform, while placing the community at the heart of all that we do.”

Through the next 12 months, TRIVE will roll out initiatives under three thrusts: Ventures, Community and Advisory.

TRIVE ventures invests in IOT startup that makes training assistance wearables

SINGAPORE – ATHLEDE Pte Ltd, a sports lifestyle hardware tech company, has received a S$40,000 angel funding and Startup SG founder grant from TRi5 Ventures to develop training assistance wearables that do more than just tracking people’s exercise and fitness.  TRi5 Ventures is an Accredited Mentor Partner of SPRING Singapore.

ATHLEDE is co-founded by Kwok Cheong WONG (KC), a graduate of SIM’s Platform E IntensE entrepreneurship programme and his programme mentor, Dr Bert Grobben. Dr Grobben is also CEO of Venture Builder Budding Innovations.


BEAM launches VentureStart program in Singapore, collaborates with TRi5 Ventures to fund and grow 20 new startups

SINGAPORE — Business social networking company, BEAM today announced a strategic partnership with early-stage VC TRi5 Ventures to launch VentureStart, an entrepreneurial development program that brings more support to budding entrepreneurs building startups in Singapore. The new strategic partnership is focused on 2 key areas:

1) To provide up to S$50k early stage financing to entrepreneurs, and

2) to provide a holistic support system for new startups that covers business/technical support, mentoring, community events, financing, market access, customer acquisition, media coverage.

BEAM will tap into TRi5’s pool of over 60 mentors from the NEXT50 initiative. These mentors and industry experts have startup background experiences who will help to provide guidance, insights, and support to entrepreneurs out there.

“With the speed of disruptions and innovations happening globally, it is now more essential than ever to mentor startups to get up to speed and be globally competitive from day one. Hence, the imparting of knowledge and the sharing of experiences, especially during the early stages, are essential in building startups with a solid foundation”, mentioned Christopher Quek, managing partner of Tri5 Ventures.

To further boost the success of startups, BEAM will facilitate the SG Startup Co-Investment Grant (SG Founders Grant) of up to $50,000 to first-time Singaporean founders starting out on their ventures. This co-investment grant is a combination of a $30,000 grant from SPRING Singapore and up to $20,000 equity investment from Tri5 Ventures.

“Entrepreneurship can be a long and lonely journey. With a holistic support system for founders to tap into insights, connections, financing, and more, we believe this will bring tremendous value for the many new and aspiring entrepreneurs building startups. We hope that this raise the overall calibre of entrepreneurs and bring forth a new generation of innovative and transformational companies”, mentioned Kenneth Ho, CEO of BEAM.


About VentureStart Program

The VentureStart Program is a startup support and development program by BEAM focused on bringing continuous resources, support, and leverage to entrepreneurs throughout their journey of building their companies.

The program is conducted on a rolling basis (not cohort basis) where entrepreneurs are supported throughout the idea/prototyping, go-to-market, fundraising, and expansion stages of their ventures in the following areas:

  • Business and Product Development assistance directly from the BEAM team. An online point of contact will be established to get quick help at any point in time.
  • Warm Introductions to valuable business connections.
  • Access to over 60 mentors and experts.
  • Access to invite-only events, trainings, and support sessions.
  • Media coverage and press release distribution.
  • Customer acquisition support and marketing assistance to reduce advertising costs.
  • Grant financing via the SG Founders grant (for first time founders in Singapore)
  • Fundraising support, strategizing, and legal assistance.
  • Market access and field trips to other parts of the region (Malaysia (Kuala Lumpur, Johor, Penang), Singapore, Japan (Tokyo), Taiwan (Taipei), China (Wuhan), Australia, Indonesia, and Thailand).
  • Hiring & HR support.
  • Participation in entrepreneurial support groups.


The strategic partnership aims to produce 20 new Singapore-based startups of verticals aligned with Singapore’s thrust of deep technologies and Smart Nation initiatives in the next 12 months.

“I have received feedback from fellow VCs that dealflow quality and quantity at early stages, are essential in building startups with a solid foundation. With a wide range of mentors from across industries on board, we are certain that the startup founders will benefit more from a variety of quality perspectives”, mentioned Christopher Quek, managing partner of Tri5 Ventures.

VentureStart is now accepting applications.

Making life easier for insurance agents with Surer         

The general insurance industry in Singapore handled over S$4b in value of insurance premiums in 2016, with an estimated 10,000 intermediaries involved. But Derren Teo was surprised to discover that the sizeable industry has not caught up with the technological age.

He shares, “For such an important industry, intermediaries were still relying on excel spreadsheets to track insurance policies. Furthermore, they communicated via whatsapp with haphazard tracking of discussions, and stored data in their hard disks which were at risk of loss with no backup.”

Derren is no stranger to the insurance industry and faced similar pain points. He worked over nine years of insurance experience in sales, business development, claims and underwriting working in AIA, AIG, MSIG and QBE. He saw how the keystone of the industry, its intermediaries or more commonly known as agents or financial advisors, were thoroughly under-served and overworked.

In 2015, Derren spoke to peers who agreed a management system was needed to improve productivity. However, there has been no solution that truly solves the issues for the intermediaries.

After two years of awaiting for such a solution to appear, Teo decided the solution was unlikely to come unless he stepped up to build it.

New beginnings

Gordon Tay was Derren's long-time buddy from junior college, where both shared a common dream to make a difference in the world during their younger years.

Coincidentally, when Derren left his job to build on the idea, Gordon and his brother, Renfred had both just quit their jobs to find new purposes in their lives as well. Gordon was a seasoned B2B marketing professional while Renfred was in finance.

Derren took the opportunity to articulate his passion to serve the intermediaries of the insurance industry. Together with his two newfound co-founders, the beginnings of Surer was born.

What Surer is all about

“Surer is a market-first, web-based business, customer management and resource sharing system that harnesses the power of technology to enhance productivity of some 10,000 agents and financial advisors in the general insurance industry,” explains Gordon, who spearheads the marketing efforts.

“We see that Surer will be the holistic insurance tech solution that agents and financial advisors will come to rely on for improved efficiency and productivity.

“The system will help digitise manual tracking work, simplify and systemize rudimentary processes and facilitate networking and resource sharing. This will allow agents and financial advisors to be able to pitch better and close faster. Most importantly, for them to be 'surer' about the way they run their business.”

As the CEO, Derren takes a step further. “I see Surer to be such a trusted centralised system that it can act as the 'guardian' of insurance industry, facilitating a triple-win situation where greater transparency will be provided to policy holders, better commissions can be brokered for intermediaries and the industry can be empowered with greater insights. Surer will be the insurance for insurance.”

Surer is the first investee by TRi5 Ventures under the SG Founder co-investment grant scheme by SPRING Singapore.