Jon Russell was Asia Editor for The Next Web from 2011 to 2014. Originally from the UK, he lives in Bangkok, Thailand. You can find him on T Jon Russell was Asia Editor for The Next Web from 2011 to 2014. Originally from the UK, he lives in Bangkok, Thailand. You can find him on Twitter, Angel List, LinkedIn.
Singapore-headquartered price comparison site Save22 has raised an undisclosed round of funding that will see it push on and expand its service across Southeast Asia. The round was led by existing investor Crystal Horse (Singapore), and includes participation from blog advertising network Nuffnang, Strategia Ventures (Singapore) and Little Lights Capital in Indonesia.
Save22 is currently live in Singapore, the Philippines and Indonesia but, with the new investment, co-founder and CEO Guyi Shen tells TNW it will launch in Malaysia within the next three months. There are also plans to expand into new products that provide “offline retail market transparency” solutions, while the sales team in its existing three markets will be increased too.
The startup previously raised $100,000 in seed funding from Crystal Horse, but neither Shen nor the new backers are divulging the value of the latest round.
Initially founded as Lobangclub in 2010, the service enables shoppers to find the lowest prices for items simply by scanning the barcode. Once a scan is complete, the app provides locations of the nearest retailers and the price at which they are selling the product.
It is available for iOS and Android, but is currently limited to the aforementioned three countries in Southeast Asia.
Back in 2011, when Save22 was known as Lobangclub, it scooped the top prize in the Asia Top 50 Apps competition at the Singtel Techventure 2011 event.
It also drew attention following an appearance on Singapore’s startup reality show Angel’s Gate, as Shen was criticized for giving away a 10 percent stake in the company for 12 months of mentoring by two angel investors (video). It later transpired that, despite agreeing to the deal in the footage, Shen had not accepted the offer.
The company changed its name last August when Shen and fellow co-founders Ronald Cheung and Jeremy Foo realized the negative connotations that it drew in Indonesia, where ‘lobang’ — which is slang for deal in Singapore — means ‘hole’. Go figure the rest.
Top Image Credit: Sufi Nawaz
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