KUALA LUMPUR – NeonRunner, a startup from Malaysia which offers last mile on-demand services for the masses at affordable prices, was named Startup of the Year at the inaugural inaugural Rice Bowl Startup Awards 1 Asean Entrepreneurship Summit.

376 entries were submitted from nine countries across South East Asia during the nomination phase from 1 June to 15 September 2015. A total of 33 finalists were identified and were awarded startup training worth USD15,000, regional media engagements and investor matching.

 “Cumulatively, USD82 million in funding has been pledged by investors to date to invest in the finalists, and we are confident that this figure will expand as more investors recognise the quality and innovation of these startups,” says Ashran Dato’ Ghazi, Chairman of New Entrepreneurs Foundation (myNEF).

Co-founded by M. Kanashan (CEO) and Arvind Patmarajah (CFO), NeonRunner took home the top Golden Rice Bowl Award and Service Startup of the Year. It manages a fleet of over 100 motorcycle runners who will buy, pick up, deliver and run errands for Malaysians. It charges on a fair pricing model where consumers pay for actual time and distance in takes to complete the task.

A panel of over 30 judges from the awards’ community partners evaluated the entries in four broad areas – Business, Traction, USP and Investability.

Finalists were judged by the Rice Bowl Startup Awards Grand Jury, lead by Tan Sri Dr. Mohamed Irwan Serigar Abdullah, Chairman of the 1 ASEAN Entrepreneurship Summit as Head Judge and comprising of Nadira Yusoff, President of Nadi-Ayu Technologies & CoChairperson of 1 ASEAN Entrepreneurship Summit; Hamdi Mokhtar, Board Member of New Entrepreneurs Foundation; Cheryl Yeoh, CEO of Malaysian Global Innovation & Creativity Centre; Leigh Reyes, President & Chief Creative Officer of LOWE Philippines; Matthew Badalucco, Vice President of Catcha Group; and Amran Hassan, Head of Innovation of Maybank.

The Winners for the inaugural Rice Bowl Startup Awards are


Retail Startup of the Year

Poundit (Philippines) – YouPoundit.com is an e-commerce site for consumer electronics founded by Kristian Salvo, CEO.

Media Startup of the Year

FoodAdvisor.my (Malaysia) – Food review and recommendation site founded and curated by Kenny Hew, CEO and Kay Stanford Jr. Kastum, Digital Producer.

Digital/Online Startup of the Year

Eatigo (Thailand) – Online restaurant reservations with time-based discounts. Cofounded by Michael Cluzel, CEO and Siddhanta Kothari, COO.

Tech Startup of the Year

Star Ticket (Myanmar) – The first bus ticketing solution in Myanmar. Co-founded by Thet Mon Aye and Zarni Nway Oo.


Product Startup of the Year

QLIPP (Singapore) – Lightweight sensor that helps improve tennis game. Co-founded by Donny Soh, CEO and Lee Chee How, COO.

Service Startup of the Year

NeonRunner (Malaysia) – On demand, same day delivery service enabler co-founded by M.Kanashan, CEO and Arvind Patmarajah, CFO.

Innovative Go-To-Market Startup of the Year

GetLinks (Thailand) – Connects companies with the next generation of passionate digital talent and innovators. Co-founded by Djoann Fal and Polpat Songthamjitti.


FinTech Business Startup of the Year (category sponsored by Maybank)

Qwikwire (Phillipines) – Pay bills from anywhere in the world brought by Bing Bryan Tan, CTO and Zairo Hererro Ko, Head Of Business Development.

University Startup of the Year (category sponsored by University Malaya)

Flexilicate (Malaysia) – Custom designed optical fibers for telecommunications applications, sensing & non-linear effects spearheaded by Prof. Dr. Faisal Raf Mahamd Adikan, Director and Dr. Ghafour Amouzad Mahdiraji,Managing Director.


Social Enterprise Startup of the Year

Kapital Boost (Singapore) – Islamic crowdfunding platform that helps small businesses pay for goods and capital purchases. Co-founded by Erly Witoyo, Managing Partner and Umar Munshi, Partner.

Woman in Business Startup of the Year

MumRadar (Singapore) – Helping mums find nursing rooms, baby friendly cafes, playgrounds and more on the go. Co-founded by mums Silvia Wetherell and Rita Bishop.

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