There is no doubt that technology has changed our lives – especially in the last decade or so. But beyond goofy Snapchat filters and viral memes, other developments such as AI and big data technologies have given this generation powerful tools to change traditional industries and more important areas of our lives. Meet 10 of the Under 30s from Asia who are putting the “tech” in healthtech, edutech, fintech and beyond – in the hope of making our lives better.
Sunbeom Gwon, 28, South Korea – Founder & CEO, Ecube Labs
Gwon cofounded Ecube Labs, a waste management and logistics solution provider that uses smart sensors and big data to change the way everyday waste collection operations are managed. By using data, they can reduce collection frequency and costs by saving on fuel and labor, in some cases saving up to 80% on labor costs. Ecube has implemented its smart network in 21 cities worldwide including Seoul and three cities in Colombia, with the hope of bringing lower-cost devices to emerging markets.
Prusothman Sina Raja, 29, Singapore – Cofounder & CEO, Privi Medical
Sina Raja founded Privi Medical, a medtech company that develops home care solutions that help patients deal with minor problems without having to go to a clinic. Their flagship product is a disposable, drug-free cure for low-grade hemorrhoids that can be used by the sufferers in the comfort of their homes. With other products in the works, Raja believes that their solutions “will save millions of lives and billions of dollars in healthcare costs.” He says “improving outcomes and reducing cost through technology is critical to ensure that healthcare is sustainable in the long run.”
Maricor Bunal, 29, Philippines – Cofounder & COO, Growthsolutions Inc.
To address the lack of financial inclusion in her country, Bunal cofounded Loansolutions.ph – a platform that connects borrowers and lenders to ensure competitive loan terms for the former. ”Lack of access to financing makes people settle for options like predatory lending just to survive,” says Bunal, whose fintech startup has helped more than 2000 clients since its inception. “If everyone has access to good financing there will be more of us doing business and creating jobs,” she adds.
Aditya Agarwalla, 23, India – Cofounder & CEO, Kisan Network
Agarwalla is the cofounder of Kisan Network, an Indian online marketplace for agriculture that provides small and marginal farmers a direct way of increasing their income by incorporating technology into their crop selling process. “This begins right from analyzing fluctuating market prices to decide when to harvest, to optimizing the movement of goods and simultaneous flow of information from the farm to the doorstep of the buyer. As a result, the quality of crops is maintained and farmers are able to receive a better price for it,” says Agarwalla.
Xiao Huang & Hao Huang, 29, China – Cofounders, Xberts
Twin brothers Xiao Huang and Hao Huang cofounded Xberts in 2015, a cross-border hardware marketplace that connects 1,200 Chinese wholesale suppliers with customers worldwide to buy hardware products at 60% lower cost. “By turning our global experts community into crowdsourcing forces and adding an online e-commerce component, we have transformed how international consumers discover the latest Chinese products, as well as how the manufacturers sell their products directly to the overseas end consumers,” they explain, referring to their innovative way of operating.
Bomi Doh, 26, South Korea – Cofounder & Product Designer, Energy Nomad
Along with her team at Energy Nomad, cofounder and product designer Bomi Doh developed Estream, a lightweight portable USB charger and lantern powered by running water. Apart from being a convenient and free way to store energy – perfect for off-the-grid hikers and campers – this technology also allows households in low-income countries to afford their own clean energy solutions.
Alfred Boyadgis, 26, Australia – CEO, Forcite Helmet Systems
It took Boyadgis, founder and designer of Forcite, and his team three years to perfect the patented technology for his smart helmet that uses a battery technology that is resistant to damage or impact. By implementing functions such as impact detection, video recording, smart communication and navigation, Forcite aims to control any situation better and enhance the safety of those who wear it.
Vaishnavi Murali, 29, India – Founder & CEO, Eikowa Art
Through Eikowa, a curated online art gallery, Murali is using technology to change the way people buy art and aiding customers through art advisory, with a focus on new art buyers. Eikowa’s soon-to-launch application, with an Augmented Reality function, will also allow customers to select a painting from the online catalog and construct a view with real, life sized painting positioned in the room, which will help make buying decision and overcome physical restriction.
Jamie Beaton & Sharndre Kushor, 21 & 22, New Zealand – Cofounders, Crimson Education
Utilizing technology is at the heart of Crimson Education’s mantra, an online education company connecting students with mentors from top-ranked universities. “We have used technology in many ways but first and foremost to make the online learning process across culture and country delightful, democratize information access for international students and ensure rigorous and scalable quality control,” explain Jamie Beaton and Sharndre Kushor, cofounders of Crimson Education.
Joshua Kevin, 24, Indonesia – Founder & CEO, Talenta
According to Kevin, Human Resources is one of the biggest areas to be disrupted by technology. His contribution is Talenta, a SaaS product that helps companies improve their HR processes. With Talenta’s technology, companies are able to create an employee database, track their attendance and manage their payroll – including the tax and social security – all on one online platform, enabling HR managers to focus on people rather than the admin.