Generally, we look for companies that have already launched and have some traction, usually revenue-generating customers. but not all businesses are immediately revenue generating and we understand that. but there should be pretty strong growth. there should be strong user engagement.
we look for companies that have a global distribution strategy or at least regional. while the taiwanese startups we have invested in are at different stages, the one thing they all have in common is that they were international in their distribution from day one.
for example, cubie messenger, which launched in march 2012 and joined 500 startups in october of that year, focused on the southeast asia market early, before other mobile messaging apps. and it grew very fast.
roam and wander was primarily distributing in asia and wanted to build up its us presence. we advised them to come to our accelerator because we are a good gateway to the us. the founder, jason warren, is experienced – he previously worked in silicon valley – and the company is innovative. it produces a talking stuffed rabbit named tutu. you activate the talking function by downloading an app from Apple’s app store on your iphone and then inserting the device into the head of the rabbit. tutu won the award for best new toy at the hong kong game and toy fair in january. roam and wander also now has retail partnerships with amazon, toys “r” us, fnac [french retailer] and studio a, Apple’s reseller in taiwan.