Spotlight Series: Snapask


Snapask, one of Zegal’s first clients, has received a lot of buzz following their last round of funding round of USD 1.8M. As a notable success story of the Hong Kong ecosystem, Snapask’s story is being featured in Zegal’s first ever Spotlight event on 15 September.

Watch this video featuring Snapask Founder and CEO Timothy Yu.

The mobile platform facilitates and accelerates response rates for questions in ways that have not existed before. By simply snapping a photo, students can get help on homework or connect with a tutor.

The full app was launched in January 2015. Now, Snapask is now available in three countries and has plans to continue expanding.

The Spotlight Series is a new event where Zegal gives the floor to its successful clients. Catch Snapask’s story as told by Founder and CEO Timothy Yu this Tuesday, 15 September at the Hive in Kennedy Town at 7PM. Space is limited so RSVP today,

Watch the video featuring Snapask Founder and CEO Timothy Yu.

Yu talks about why startups should not raise too much money and offers advice for other startups.

Read the transcript below,

What is Snapask?

Snapask is a mobile platform that allows students to ask questions about anything. Whenever they have problems on their homework, they just need to take a snapshot of the question and send it out. On the other side in Snapask there are over thousands of top university tutors helping them within seconds.

 How is Snapask different?

So the problem Snapask is addressing is the instant response to help that student right at that exact moment whenever they need help. The other competitors in the market are mainly focusing on a forum-type discussion and mainly student still have to wait. But with Snapask, they never have to wait and they can make sure there will be a quality tutor within the span of seconds.

At what stage of development is Snapask?

Snapask launched for about eight months, so within this period we have already acquired over 15,000 users in Hong Kong and we have quickly expanded to Singapore, Taiwan and China. We have just completed our last round of funding for PreA of 1.8 million US and we are planning for global expansion.

Where did you get your funding?

So we started in Hong Kong. With Cyberport we had the Seed round and quickly we built traction and raised our angel round with private investors and afterwards we mainly need the help from the VCs and really high profile education organisations to help us to get to the next stage. So that’s how we raised our pre-A round with the support of VC and individual high net worth.

 What about your last round of funding?

The main contributor of this round investment is mainly a local investor. He is originally a top tutor in Hong Kong, which we call the “Celeb Tutors.” So with his help in the local offline tutoring centres we hope we can really gain traction and start to build our online and offline experience for the students. So in terms of expanding Snapask to other cities, we found that we may need some other help from other VCs in China as well as in Singapore. So in China, the main contributor is SOS Venture which is also under the China Accelerator Programme. With their extensive network in all the local publishers and the local education field we hope that we can quickly gain some traction with local partners and see how we can really build up the solid foundation for Snapask in China.

 What have you learned about raising funds?

So one thing I have learned from my previous round of fundraising is always raise enough money but not too much. The reason is you only need that money to achieve what you promised to your investor and you want to keep more equity with your company and for your team. So, don’t be overwhelmed by the big fundraising round, don’t be overwhelmed by the media about how big your fundraising round is. Always know what your objective is and how much money you will need to get there so people will feel confident about your company. For the future success, there will be more people supporting you for the future development.

Any words of advice for others?

A few words of advice. Always focus on your product and service. Don’t be overwhelmed and don’t feel good about yourself and the fundraising round and all the media exposure. Always focus on your customers. Talk to them and make a better product. That’s what I think makes a startup successful.

Why Zegal?

So we have been using Zegal for quite some time. We’re actually one of their first customers. I find the service really good. In terms of when you are a startup you want to save your resources to some other development. For example, your product, your team. The last thing you want to spend money on is legal service which is crazily high. So for Zegal, it’s a reasonable amount and it’s professionally addressing the startup’s problems so that’s why I think Zegal can help startups a lot.

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