TAIPEI, July 21, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — The National Development Council (NDC) is committed to enhancing Taiwan’s global prominence in the startup ecosystem. Building upon the national startup brand “Startup Island TAIWAN,” the NDC is further advancing the “NEXT BIG” program. This initiative aims to identify and promote benchmark startups recommended by the startup community and industry leaders, symbolizing the spirit of trailblazers and inspiring the younger generation to embrace innovation.
Following the successful selection of nine NEXT BIG startups in 2021, the NDC is proud to announce the recommendation of 13 additional startups for this year. These startups represent various sectors. They include:
Education Technology – AmazingTalker; Hahow Smart Health – CuboAi; Health2Sync AI Security and Trust Technology – CyCraft; Gogolook Social Media, Entertainment and Reservation Services – Dcard; FunNow; inline Fintech – EUI B2B Software Services – GoFreight Sustainable Energy Technology – NextDrive Defense Aerospace Technology – Tron Future
(Please refer to the company profiles below)
These recommended startups will collaborate with Startup Island TAIWAN to infuse vitality and hope into Taiwan’s startup development.
NDC Minister, Kung Ming-Hsin, expressed that NEXT BIG not only serves as a national startup brand ambassador but also embodies the potential of different industries, much like the pivotal role TSMC plays in the semiconductor industry. Taiwanese entrepreneurs have previously established a solid industrial foundation through their unwavering dedication, transforming Taiwan into an important partner in the global technology industry. To usher in a new chapter of industrial transformation, Taiwan must rely on more innovative startups. Through the NEXT BIG program, Taiwan’s exceptional startups are no longer solitary cases but a united force of trailblazers. The NDC will continue to cultivate a supportive environment for innovation-driven development, empowering Taiwanese businesses to shine on the global stage and become significant drivers of innovation worldwide.
The NDC further elaborated that NEXT BIG is a collaborative effort involving representatives from the startup community, industry leaders, the Ministry of Economic Affairs, and the National Science and Technology Council. Through a rigorous selection process, consensus discussions, and visits by the NDC, exemplary startups demonstrating the capacity to drive industry transformation and exhibit significant growth potential are chosen as NEXT BIG startups. The 13 recommended NEXT BIG startups cover important sectors such as education technology, smart health, defense aerospace, sustainable solutions, and digital economy. They are as follows (in alphabetical order):
AmazingTalker: One of the top three global online tutoring platforms. CuboAi: Asia-Pacific’s leading baby monitor brand powered by advanced AI technology. CyCraft: A renowned cybersecurity company specializing in real-time AI Copilot forensics Dcard: Taiwan’s largest next-generation social media platform EUI: Fintech revolutionizing cross-border transaction services for Inclusive Financing FunNow: The leading local lifestyle marketplace in Southeast Asia. GoFreight: Redefining the operating system for freight forwarders through technology. Gogolook: A global leader in trust technology solutions. Hahow: Taiwan’s largest online course platform. Health2Sync: Asia’s largest chronic disease management platform. Inline: Restaurants across APAC engage with 100M unique customers annually using inline. NextDrive: Driving net-zero sustainability for Taiwan and Japan’s leading companies. Tron Future: Creating world’s first autonomous drone swarm defense system with satellite connectivity
These 13 benchmark startups have demonstrated excellence in innovation, market potential, and industry insight. They have established a strong foothold in Taiwan while actively expanding into international markets. Their diverse industry backgrounds and entrepreneurial concepts showcase the richness and vibrancy of Taiwan’s startup ecosystem. These startups not only serve as role models and a source of inspiration for the younger generation to embrace innovation but also act as ambassadors, representing Taiwan’s prowess in innovation on the international stage.
The NDC will continue to invite the NEXT BIG startups to collaborate with Startup Island TAIWAN, integrating resources to explore overseas business opportunities. Furthermore, Startup Island TAIWAN will serve as a unified voice, promoting the entrepreneurial stories and spirit of the NEXT BIG startups worldwide, attracting more international investment and cooperation opportunities. The NDC also encourages the business community and investors to pay attention to the NEXT BIG startups and provide them with more opportunities and resources. Startups possess innovative business models and significant market potential, making them crucial engines for Taiwan’s economic development. By supporting and investing in startups, we can collectively promote Taiwan’s industrial innovation and transformation, creating more success stories.
Startup Island TAIWAN, a national startup brand jointly created by the NDC and the startup communities, represents Taiwan’s determination to embark from being recognized as the “Startup Island” to attaining a prominent position on the global stage. Through the establishment of a cohesive brand identity and the collaboration of public and private sectors, we aim to showcase Taiwan’s innovation power and illuminate Taiwan’s innovative strength on the international stage. For more information, please follow the Startup Island TAIWAN website and social media.
Official Website： https://www.startupislandtaiwan.info/
AmazingTalker (AmazingTalker Inc.), founded in 2016, is one of the top three global learning platforms. Leveraging special algorithms combined with AI, AmazingTalker is dedicated to enabling everyone to find suitable tutors quickly and learn various languages and subjects online. With over 11,000 teachers and more than 2 million students worldwide, AmazingTalker aims to become the first unicorn in Taiwan’s education startup industry. Compared to its early stages, the company has achieved a nearly 400% annual revenue growth rate, with 70% of revenue coming from overseas markets.
CuboAi (YUN YUN AI BABY CAMERA CO. LTD.), established in 2017, is the world’s first AI-powered baby monitor that provides real-time detection of newborns’ safety, sleep conditions, and overall health. The product is sold in multiple countries, including the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, Australia, Japan, Europe, and Singapore. With over 150,000 units sold worldwide, CuboAi has become the leading brand in the Asia-Pacific region. CuboAi has received a rating of 4.6 stars from global consumers on Amazon and has been honored with 20 global awards for brand marketing and product innovation, including two CES Innovation Awards in 2020 and 2022. The company will continue to cultivate the mother and baby technology ecosystem and provide comprehensive and secure parenting experiences for parents worldwide.
CyCraft (CyCraft Technology Corp.), founded in 2017, is a disruptive AI cybersecurity innovator, addressing the long-standing challenges of automation deficiency and the lack of AI in industrial cybersecurity. With a venture capital investment of NTD 250 million, CyCraft leverages AI-forensics algorithms to effectively strengthen incident response performance, enabling companies to achieve optimal digital resilience with minimal effort. CyCraft’s clients include prominent Japanese firms such as Hitachi and Mitsubishi. For two consecutive years, it has been designated as a partner for enhancing cybersecurity among small and medium enterprises by the Tokyo Metropolitan Government. In Taiwan, it has gained recognition from over two hundred government agencies, law enforcement, financial institutions, and listed companies.
Dcard (Dcard Taiwan Ltd.), founded in 2015, is Taiwan’s largest social media platform for the younger generation. With 8 million registered members and over 20 million monthly unique visitors, Dcard extends its commercial scope to diverse business models and overseas markets. It offers services such as advertising, e-commerce, the original character IP “dtto friends”, and the video brand “Dcard Video” which has surpassed 1 million subscribers on YouTube and has high penetration and influence among the youth demographic. Dcard expanded its presence to Hong Kong and Macau markets in 2018 and launched “Dtto”, a community platform tailored for Japanese university students, in 2021.
EUI (EUI Interactive Corp.), established in 2016 from Taiwan, committed to providing Secure and Convenient cross-border financial services to build a global Inclusive Financing Network. Its flagship product, the EUI Money platform, incorporates RegTech, Big Data, and AI identity verification technologies, as well as internationally compliant remittance transaction mechanisms. EUI is a fintech company permitted and approved by Taiwan government. The service covers countries such like Indonesia, the Philippines, Vietnam, and Thailand, and plays a positive role in remittances service through legal and safety channels, thereby promoting Inclusive Financing.
FunNow Group, established in 2015, is a renowned local lifestyle marketplace in Southeast Asia. It operates across multiple countries, including Taiwan, Hong Kong, Thailand, Malaysia, and Japan. FunNow offers over 15 categories of booking services catering to diverse local lifestyle needs. The company collaborates with more than 5,500 vendors and serves 2.4 million registered members. It has established partnerships with the MICHELIN Guide, Reserve with Google, and Tripadvisor. FunNow has garnered recognition from prominent venture capital firms and listed companies as Taiwan’s most promising internationally-focused lifestyle service application. Through strategic mergers and acquisitions, FunNow Group has expanded its business and now manages brands such as TABLEAPP and Niceday. These brands provide reliable booking options and tailored experiences for distinct markets and consumers.
GoFreight (GoFreight Inc., established in 2017) revolutionizes the freight forwarding industry as the world’s largest cloud-based all-in-one software. Our mission is to empower the $300 billion international freight forwarding market by redefining the operating system through cutting-edge technology. We provide comprehensive solutions that simplify, streamline, and optimize freight forwarding operations, delivering unparalleled efficiency and profitability. With GoFreight’s innovative products, forwarders can reduce costs, increase sales, effortlessly adapt to the digital era, and gain a competitive edge in the global market.
Gogolook (Gogolook Co., Ltd.), founded in 2012, is a global leader in AI-driven digital fraud prevention and risk management services. Its flagship product, Whoscall, has accumulated over one billion downloads globally and possesses the most comprehensive phone number database in East Asia and Southeast Asia, gaining recognition from multinational law enforcement agencies. Starting from the field of telecom fraud prevention, Gogolook has expanded its services to digital communication, fintech, and enterprise fraud prevention SaaS, covering more than 30 countries, including Taiwan, South Korea, Japan, Hong Kong, Thailand, Brazil, and Malaysia. The company plays a crucial role in the global fraud prevention industry chain.
Hahow (Hahow Inc.), established in 2015, is Taiwan’s largest and most diverse online course platform. With nearly one million members and over 700 instructors offering over 1,000 courses, Hahow has achieved a revenue growth rate exceeding 300 times since its inception, aiming to become the “Netflix of education.” Hahow has been consistently recognized by HolonIQ, an international authority in education technology, as one of the top 50 innovative and developmental education technology companies in Taiwan and the top 150 in Asia. In 2020, Hahow launched “Hahow for Business” and has partnered with over 100 clients such as Taiwan Mobile, Cathay Financial Holdings, and Nippon Express.
Health2Sync (H2 Inc.), established in Taiwan in 2013, is Asia’s largest chronic disease management platform that includes integrated devices, data analytics, and cloud-based services to help patients manage their disease with more precision and improved outcomes.Health2Sync is committed to addressing the issue of insufficient medical and financial resources for diabetes care.With over one million registered users worldwide, Health2Sync holds the largest market share in Asia Pacific and partners with the world’s top three anti-diabetes giants, Abbott, Novo Nordisk, and Sanofi.
Inline (Inline apps Ltd.), founded in 2015, provides restaurant operators with a customer management system for effectively engaging with customers before, during, and after dining in or dining out. Over 8000 restaurants use inline to serve and stay in contact with customers each year across Japan, Australia, Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore, Hong Kong, and Taiwan. Restaurants use a comprehensive inline platform, for receiving reservations and reservation deposits from a world-class reservation distribution network, including OpenTable, Google, Apple, Instagram, Trip Advisor, and 50+ other consumer apps. Thousands of restaurants also use inline’s cost-effective online food ordering platform. As of 2023, restaurants serve 100M unique customers and process US$250M in online transactions via inline.
NextDrive (NextDrive Co.), founded in 2013, has been a pioneer in energy IoT technology, specializing in providing comprehensive software and hardware integration services. Their offerings range from energy gateways and cloud computing to device data management platforms. By leveraging data analysis, NextDrive maximizes the efficiency of power usage and accelerates the goal of net-zero transformation. In 2017, NextDrive entered Japan, and has partnered with Japan’s top 5 power companies, including Tokyo Electric Power and Chubu Electric Power. In early 2023, the company received the prestigious “New Energy Award of the Year” from the Ministry of Economic Affairs of Japan for its “IoE Energy IoT Platform” and “Ecogenie+ Home Energy Management Solution.” Additionally, NextDrive was honored with the President’s Award of the New Energy Awards by the Ministry of Economy, Trade, and Industry of Japan for the same solutions.
TronFuture (TronFuture Tech Inc.), founded in 2018, is one of the fastest growing defense and space technology companies in Taiwan. Leveraging Taiwan’s global leadership in semiconductors, TronFuture has commercialized the groundbreaking “Ultra-thin Active Phased Array Antenna” technology. This achievement has positioned their flagship products such as the “Drone Defense System,” “Low Earth Orbit Satellite Communication Payload,” and “Synthetic Aperture Radar” as leaders in the global market. All of the company’s core technologies are developed and manufactured in Taiwan. TronFuture has undertaken numerous projects for the TASA (Taiwan Space Agency) and the Industrial Development Bureau of Taiwan. Starting in 2022, the company plans to expand its product exports to overseas markets.