Meet 31 Individuals in Singapore Who Made the Forbes 30 Under 30 Asia List 2021
The list this year, according to Forbes, consists of innovative leaders "who are braving the challenging environment brought about by the Covid-19 pandemic and finding new opportunities amidst the new normal,"
The prestigious list features 10 categories which include social impact, finance, and venture capital, and consumer technology to name a few and honours 30 people in each category.
Out of all the honorees, 31 young people on the list are based in Singapore. Here's everything you need to know about these up-and-coming individuals.
1/31 Tushar Aggarwal
Tushar Aggarwal is the 28-year-old founder and chief executive officer of Persistence. Persistence is a Singapore-based company that uses blockchain technologies to facilitate asset transactions. These are transactions such as commodity trading and debt financing.
In 2020, Persistence raised S$3.7 million in a round that was led by Arrington XRP Capital.
2/31 Htay Aung
In 2017, Htay Aung noticed that the idea of bike-sharing was building momentum in Singapore. He decided to capitalise on this by starting Anywheel, which is a bike-sharing company that requires you to download an app and scan the provided QR code in order to unlock and use a bicycle.
Today, Anywheel is one of the few bike-sharing services that has been authorised by the Land Transport Authority to operate in Singapore.
Anywheel now operates in Malaysia and Thailand in addition to Singapore and provides both bike and e-scooter sharing services. The company is looking to expand into e-bike sharing as well as to open branches in Australia and Vietnam soon.
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3/31 Chen Chee Yang
Chen Chee Yang is a neuroscientist who, in 2018, founded Carta Genomics. Carta Genomics specialises in In Vitro Fertilisation (IVF) for parents who are struggling to conceive. IVF is the process of retrieving eggs from a woman's ovaries and using sperm to fertilise them to create an embryo which is then either frozen or put back in a woman's uterus.
Carta Genomics specialises in the use of artificial intelligence and machine learning to analyse genes and to predict the risks of disease for embryos that have been created.
4/31 Serene Cai
Serene Cai is one of the co-founders of Speedoc, a digital health startup which allows patients to book doctor house visits locally. She started the company with Shravan Verma in 2017. Over the last four years, the pair have grown their business to include nurse and ambulance bookings as well as online medical consultations.
They have also recorded over 33,000 patients using their services to book doctor visits.
In 2020, Speedoc managed to raise S$5 million in its series A round of financing which was led by Vertex Ventures Southeast Asia and India.
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5/31 Chia Jeng Yang
Chia Jeng Yang is currently the principal at Saison Capital which is an investment team. In 2020, the 27-year-old managed to acquire an impressive 10 new investments from India, Southeast Asia, and the US.
Whilst he was doing this, he also launched a Covid-19 layoff online database called SEAcosystem.com. The system was designed to help1,500 startup employees to find new job opportunities as many companies were forced to retrench their workers or to shut down during the pandemic.
The adventurous investor has also founded and started Shaper Impact Capital which is a community-led volunteer project. The startup has about 100 volunteers that have helped hundreds of companies to get connected with a social impact.
6/31 Marilyn Chew
Marilyn Chew is a calligraphy artist who is based in Singapore. In 2016, she founded a calligraphy studio called Eterate Calligraphy. The studio specialises in workshops, experiential services, and bespoke artwork. They have also led workshops in places such as North America, South America and Asia and have worked with companies such as SK-II, Bulgari, and Montblanc.
Marilyn is also a certified instructor of American Cursive Handwriting by Master Penman Michael Sull.
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7/31 Grace Ciao
Grace Ciao is a Singapore-based fashion illustrator and artist who is well known for her stylised characters which she has named "Bloom Belles". Her designs are meant to connect viewers to nature and flowers.
Ciao has done illustrations for brands such as Chanel, Dior, Elie Saab, Jaeger-LeCoultre, JW Marriott Venice and Saks Fifth Avenue New York. Her work has also appeared on TV commercials and on limited-edition products.
8/31 Harsh Dalal
Harsh Dalal is the youngest addition to the prestigious Forbes list and is the co-founder of a software development company called Team Labs. Harsh's interest in technology began when he was only 13 after he co-created one of the first screen recorder apps with some of his friends in 2014.
In 2017, Harsh's company, Team Labs, decided to shift its focus to do more software development. They had developed an internal tool to manage communicating with each other as their staff were in different time zones. This tool was then developed to become Xenon, which was the company's first product. Today, Xenon has about 70,000 users.
The company currently has 120 employees in the six countries that it operates in and has managed to raise US$9.8 million in Series A funding since 2017.
(Related: Meet Harsh Dalal, the Youngest Addition From Singapore on Forbes’ 30 Under 30 Asia 2021 List)
9/31 Priyageetha Dia
Priyageetha Dia is a local artist who specialises in site-specific installations. She focuses on themes of identity, the self, and the influence of representation through culture.
Priyageetha was first recognised in 2017 for her iconic piece titled Golden Staircase. She had covered an HDB staircase with gold foil which sparked a nationwide debate about public art and authority.
Priyageetha later caused more of a stir in 2018 when she hung gold mylar sheets around an HDB block. The flags were quickly removed by Jalan Besar Town Council.
In 2019, Priyageetha received the impart artist award by Art Outreach Singapore. She has since had her work featured at the Art Science Museum and National Gallery.
10/31 Sheik Farhan
Sheik Farhan is a three-time world champion in silat which is a type of martial art that was developed in Malaysia and Indonesia. In 2018, Sheik won his third championship at the World Pencak Silat Championship which was held in Singapore.
The 23-year-old also won gold at the Asian Pencak Silat Championships in China in 2019 and the 2017 Southeast Asian Games which were held in Malaysia.
Sheik is the first silat exponent to be honored on the Forbes 30 Under 30 Asia list.
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11/31 Wayne Goh
Wayne Goh is one of the co-founders of Glife which is a farm-to-table platform that gets farm sources and connects these farms directly to restaurants. The company currently has over 200 employees and serves800 food and beverage businesses in Singapore.
Currently, it has raised US$7.2 million from its investors which include Heliconia Capital Management, Global Founders Capital, 500 Startups, and Quest Ventures.
12/31 Sazzad Hossain
Sazzad Hossain, a Gen.T 2020 honouree, is the founder of a locally-based social enterprise that helps migrant workers in Singapore to overcome daily challenges by helping them to improve their English.
He started this enterprise in 2013 and has since grown it to include computer skills, financial literacy, and entrepreneurship.
Last year, during the pandemic, Sazzad was able to distribute food and essentials to 43,000 migrant workers. He also worked with remittance groups to be able to get S$1.2 million for migrant workers to send home during the lockdown.
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13/31 Mohamed Afiq
Janio Asia was launched three years ago by Mohamed Afiq, Junkai Ng and Nathaniel Yim. Today, the company has grown to have over 200 employees across five countries.
Janio Asia provides cross-border shipping, last-mile delivery and tracking services in the Southeast Asia region.
Afiq is the technical co-founder of the company and takes the role of product manager. He proposes and implements solutions for clients and the internal departments.
14/31 Junkai Ng
Junkai Ng is one of the three co-founders of Janio Asia. He started his career out doing investments at Venturecraft Group and Partner's group before co-founding Janio Asia in 2018.
In 2020, Janio Asia raised an undisclosed amount of funding from their investors which include Sequoia Capital and Insignia Ventures Partners.
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15/31 Nathaniel Yim
Nathaniel Yim is one of the three co-founders of Janio Asia. Yim started his career out doing multiple internship stints in marketing in various companies such as Spark Asia and Sedgwick Richardson.
When he co-founded Janio Asia, he moved into the role of head of marketing. This is a role Yim continues to hold.
16/31 Vardhan Kapoor
He may be only 28 but Vardhan Kapoor is already leading money-transfer platform, Remitly's, expansion in the Asia Pacific. Remitly, which was featured on the Forbes Fintech list in 2018 and 2019, also managed to raise US$85 billion in 2020.
Vardhan also had his research on the impact technology has on society shortlisted for the Financial Times and McKinsey's 2019 Bracken Bower Prize for the best business book proposal by an author under 35.
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17/31 Shawn Li
Shawn Li is 29-years-old and already the founder of E3A Healthcare. The entrepreneur started out wanting to develop a way to care for newborns in a non-invasive way. He founded E3A in 2019 and put out the company's first product which was a phototherapy device that could monitor jaundice in infants.
Today, E3A has raised US$1.5 million in funding from investors such as the National University of Singapore (NUS) and Hong Kong X Startup Platform.
18/31 Jay Lim
Jay Lim is a venture partner at Global Founders Capital which is a venture capital firm that has clients such as Facebook, LinkedIn and Traveloka.
He has led investments in startups such as Reap and a student-loan firm called Pintek. He even worked at Barclays's investment banking unit briefly in 2016.
However, this is not all he has accomplished. In 2016, Lim founded Lending Startup, which he has since left.
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19/31 Vyasaraj Manakari
Vyasaraj Manakari is the co-founder and chief executive officer of Magloy Tech which is a medtech startup that he founded with Gururaj Parande and their PhD supervisor from the National University of Singapore, Manoj Gupta.
Magloy Tech has created and put out OrthoMag which is a bone implant that can dissolve in the body over time. Their product drastically reduces the risk and recovery times for patients who require implants as it eliminates the need for a second surgery to remove the implant after the bone heals.
20/31 Gururaj Parande
Gururaj Parande is the 27-year-old co-founder of medtech startup, Magloy Tech.
He is currently the chief technology officer at the company as well as a research fellow at the National University of Singapore.
So far, Magloy Tech has managed to acquire funding from investors such as Origgin Ventures and Singapore's Startup SG Tech.
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21/31 Lu Kangjia
Lu Kangjia grew up in China where she saw first-hand what the struggles were like for people with access to little water. When she became a researcher at the National University of Singapore, she was keen to focus on the ways in which water can be reused.
Currently, Lu is working on technology that uses a specially designed membrane to reclaim water from waste. Her ideas have been adopted by Singapore and are currently in use in the country.
22/31 Oh Chu Xian
In 2019, Oh Chu Xian decided that she wanted to help reduce plastic waste. This led her to create Magorium which is a locally based startup that breaks down plastics such as bottles or plastic shopping bags and turns them into road construction materials.
Her innovative ideas have won her awards such as the TechNode Best Sustainable Solutions Winner in 2020 and Ideasinc in the same year. Ideasinc is a startup challenge run by Nanyang Technology University and takes place nationwide.
23/31 Kenath Priyanka Prasad
In 2017, Kenath Priyanka Prasad co-founded the company Prime Respi which aimed at developing therapies to clear the airways of patients that suffered from chronic respiratory diseases.
She developed a portable device that would generate intrapulmonary percussion to loosen mucus in a patient. This is a device that patients can use at home rather than going down to a healthcare provider.
While her product has yet to be commercialised, she has already raised over S$2.6 million from investors such as SGInnovate.
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24/31 Devi Sahny
Devi Sahny is the founder and chief executive officer of tutoring startup, Ascend Now. Her company creates personalised education programs for students aged between seven and 18 rather than simply using ones catered to every child.
Ascend Now was created in 2018 and today, has about 70 teachers. The company has taught over 900 children in places such as Singapore, India, and Indonesia.
In 2020, Ascend Now reportedly reached S$1.3 million in revenue which was a 170 per cent increase from 2019.
25/31 Vishvesh Suriyanarayanan
Vishvesh Suriyanarayanan is the co-founder and chief technology officer of Split. Split is a payment platform that enables installment payments for merchants and consumers.
Under the leadership of Vishvesh and his co-founder, Dylan Tan, Split grew into a leading buy-now-pay-later provider. They currently operate in Singapore and Malaysia and work with mega clients such as Dyson and Lego.
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26/31 Dylan Tan
Dylan Tan is the co-founder and chief executive officer of Split. Split is a leading buy-now-pay-later provider that allows its clients to accept interest-free installment payments from customers.
Since April 2020, Split has managed to sign up 300 brands and has gotten them US$4 million in sales.
Split itself raised about US$1 million from venture capital fund 500 Startups and investors such as Accor Hotels Asia.
27/31 Wei Shi Khai
At 27, Wei Shi Khai has already managed over 30 early-stage blockchain startups with investors such as Binance and Google. He is also the chief operating officer at LongHash Ventures.
In 2019, Wei started the company's 12-week incubation program and managed to secure a total of US$18 million in funding.
Wei has also worked at McKinsey as a management consultant and frequently speaks and writes about Web 3.0 and the future of blockchain.
28/31 Xi Liu
In 2020, Xi Liu noticed that there was a lot of stigma surrounding sex in Asian communities. Concerned, she decided to start Ferne Health.
Ferne Health is sexual health platform targeted at women. It offers consultations and at-home testing kits for cervical cancer and sexually transmitted infections to make healthcare more accessible.
29/31 Jeff Young
Jeff Young is the founder of Block Vision Capital. After his company participated in a US$30 million funding round of digital currency platform, Bitwell, Young took over.
He has since grown the platform's volume to over $100 million and gained investors such as Hashkey, Dragonfly Ventures and Ceyuan Digital Assets.
30/31 Edward Yee
Edward Yee is only 26 but he has already cofounded Givfunds and gained well-known partners such as the United Nations Development Programme and NITI Aayog which are currently investing in social enterprises around South Asia that often get overlooked.
Givfunds was launched in 2017 and has already invested in 48 social enterprises and has made an impact on over 45,000 people.
Yee was also the first Singaporean in 14 years to receive a Rhodes scholarship in 2019.
31/31 Yin Likun
Likun Yin is the founder of Rootant which is a fintech startup that facilitates open-banking use cases between businesses and banks. In doing so, the company helps smaller businesses to avoid delays and helps them to save more money.
So far, the company has managed to raise US$1.5 million in seed funding and has expanded its company by opening offices in Japan and China.
Yin was also named an Asia Fintech Leader and Under 30 Fintech Leader at the Singapore Fintech Awards which happened in 2019.
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