Callum Connects Morris Sim, Co-founder of Kafnu Published 3 months ago on September 26, 2017 By Callum Laing Share Tweet Morris Sim’s new concept Kafnu is taking co-working to a new level – allowing entrepreneurs to live, work, play, learn and sleep under the one roof. What’s your story? I started my career as a product developer at Microsoft. I’ve always loved building products, I’m a builder at heart. I’ve lived in Asia and the US and have worked across the technology, entertainment, fashion, and hospitality industries. My last company, a marketing agency I co-founded called Brand Karma was recently acquired, and I’m now running Kafnu. Kafnu is a completely new concept in shared spaces where an entrepreneur can live, work, play, learn and sleep, all under one roof. What excites you most about your industry? The sharing economy has brought fresh thinking to the real estate and asset management industries we work in. This disruption means there are almost infinite opportunities for people to create new value, and that’s very exciting. What’s your connection to Asia? I was born in Taiwan, and then immigrated to the US when I was 10 where I studied and worked in the for years. I moved back to Taipei several years ago and that’s where I live now. Favourite city in Asia for business and why? Tokyo. I love Its efficiency, culture, history and the fact that I learn something new every time I travel there. What’s the best piece of advice you ever received? Surround yourself with people who are smarter than you. Who inspires you? Bill Gates. I worked at Microsoft for over 10 years, and it’s been truly interesting to see how he’s making a similar, and perhaps even bigger, impact in the world of philanthropy as he has done in technology. What have you just learnt recently that blew you away? Two things: 1) Facebook’s chat bots developed a language to talk to each other on their own. This is mind-blowing. 2) The human brain doesn’t actually stop developing at 20 years old like we previously thought; it actually develops until 25-30. So effectively the brain is a lot more flexible at a later age than we previously understood. If you had your time again, what would you do differently? I would have learnt how to play the piano. How do you unwind? I spend time with friends and family. They make me laugh and that’s relaxing. Favourite Asian destination for relaxation? Why? Ubud in Bali. Because it’s very peaceful, beautiful and spiritual. It feeds the soul. Everyone in business should read this book: The Tipping Point by Malcolm Gladwell Shameless plug for your business: Kafnu is the future of shared spaces: blending elements of living, working, playing, learning, and recharging in a single building. Our vision is to give our members access to everything they need to be their best selves, personally and professionally, so they can focus on their creative vision. That means a comfortable place to rest, a luxurious fitness center to blow off steam after a long day, a music studio in which to create, desks and work pods, a private whisky bar to bring friends, and event space where something’s always happening. A vibrant community around you. We’re opening spaces in Taipei and Hong Kong before the end of this year, and envision a network of Kafnu spaces all across Asia. You can learn more at www.kafnu.com. How can people connect with you? I connect with people who are passionate about something; people who have done something to realize the potential of their passion. While they might not have achieved their entire vision, the people that inspire me put consistent effort into their passion, regardless of the outcome. I find it easy to relate to these people and always learn something from them. Twitter handle? @morrissim — This interview was part of the Callum Connect’s column found on The Asian Entrepreneur: Callum Laing invests and buys small businesses in a range of industries around Asia. He has previously started, built and sold half a dozen businesses and is the founder & owner of Fitness-Buffet a company delivering employee wellness solutions in 12 countries. He is a Director of, amongst others, Key Person of Influence. A 40 week training program for business owners and executives. Take the ‘Key Person of Influence’ scorecard <http://www.keypersonofinfluence.com/scorecard/> Connect with Callum here: twitter.com/laingcallum linkedin.com/in/callumlaing Get his free ‘Asia Snapshot’ report from www.callumlaing.com Related Topics:asiaasianasian entrepreneurBalibusinessEntrepreneurentrepreneurseventFocusHong KonginterviewlanguageMarketingmeStorytechnologythe asian entrepreneurtravelvalue Continue Reading You may like 10 Effective Funding Models for Non-Profit Startups Malcolm Tan, Founder of Gravitas Holdings Women on Top in Tech – Pam Weber, Chief Marketing Officer at 99Designs Renata Brkić William Chin, Founder of Mummy’s Market How We Can Innovate the Legal Industry like Elon Musk Callum Connects Malcolm Tan, Founder of Gravitas Holdings Published 2 days ago on December 15, 2017 By Callum Laing Malcolm Tan is an ICO/ITO and Cryptocurrency advisor. He sees this new era as similar to when the internet launched. What’s your story? I’m a lawyer entrepreneur who owns multiple businesses, and who is now stepping into the Initial Coin Offering/Initial Token Offering/Cryptocurrency space to be a thought leader, writer (How to ICO/ITO in Singapore – A Regulatory and Compliance Viewpoint on Initial Coin Offering and Initial Token Offering in Singapore), and advisor through Gravitas Holdings – an ICO Advisory company. We are also running our own ICO campaign called AEXON, and advising 2 other ICO’s on their projects. What excites you most about your industry? It is the start of a whole new paradigm, and it is like being at the start of the internet era all over again. We have a chance to influence and shape the industry over the next decade and beyond and lead the paradigm shift. What’s your connection to Asia? I’m Singaporean and most of my business revolves around the ASEAN region. Our new ICO advisory company specialises in Singaporean ICO’s and we are now building partnerships around the region as well. One of the core business offerings of our AEXON ICO/ITO is to open up co-working spaces around the region, with a target to open 25 outlets, and perhaps more thereafter. Favourite city in Asia for business and why? Singapore, since it is my hometown and most of my business contacts originate from or are located in Singapore. It is also a very open and easy place to do business. What’s the best piece of advice you ever received? Be careful of your clients – sometimes they can be your worst enemies. This is very true and you have to always be careful about whom you deal with. The closest people are the ones that you trust and sometimes they have other agendas or simply don’t tell you the truth or whole story and that can easily put one in a very disadvantageous position. Who inspires you? Leonardo Da Vinci as a polymath and genius and leader in many fields, and in today’s world, Elon Musk for being a polymath and risk taker and energetic business leader. What have you just learnt recently that blew you away? Early stage bitcoin investors would have made 1,000,000 times profit if they had held onto their bitcoins from the start to today – in the short space of 7 years. If you had your time again, what would you do differently? Seek out good partnerships and networks from day one, and use the power of the group to grow and do things together, instead of being bogged down by operations and going it alone from start. How do you unwind? I hardly have any time for relaxation right now. I used to have very intense hobbies, chess when I was younger, bridge, bowling, some online real time strategy games and poker. All mentally stimulating games and requiring focus – I did all these at competitive levels and participated in national and international tournaments, winning multiple trophies, medals and awards in most of these fields. Favourite Asian destination for relaxation? Why? Phuket – nature, resort life, beaches, good food and a vibrant crowd. Everyone in business should read this book: Rich Dad Poor Dad by Richard Kiyosaki Shameless plug for your business: Gravitas Holdings (Pte) Limited is the premier ICO Advisory company and we can do a full service for entrepreneurs, including legal and compliance, smart contracts and token creation, marketing and PR, and business advisory and white paper writing/planning. How can people connect with you? Write emails to [email protected], or [email protected] Twitter handle? @malcolmABM — This interview is part of the ‘Callum Connect’ series of more than 500 interviews Callum Laing is an entrepreneur and investor based in Singapore. He has previously started, built and sold half a dozen businesses and is now a Partner at Unity-Group Private Equity and Co-Founder of The Marketing Group PLC. He is the author two best selling books ‘Progressive Partnerships’ and ‘Agglomerate’. Connect with Callum here: twitter.com/laingcallum linkedin.com/in/callumlaing Download free copies of his books here: www.callumlaing.com Continue Reading Callum Connects William Chin, Founder of Mummy’s Market Published 3 days ago on December 14, 2017 By Callum Laing William Chin set up Mummy’s Market. Mummy’s Market is the uncontested platform connecting parents and retailers in Singapore. What’s your story? After National Service, I enjoyed a rousing start to my corporate career with successful stints at events and conventions companies such as IQPC, Hannover Fairs Australia and Lighthouse Independent Media in management roles, building my experience in conventions, trade fairs and events. However, I hit a particularly bad streak of unemployment after that, facing difficulty finding jobs because according to recruiters, I was overqualified, yet too young. In fact, at one point I was struggling so badly with my family loans that I was sharing bowls of ramen with my girlfriend for our meals, to save costs. My financial pressures eventually culminated in my forced venture into entrepreneurship where I had to strike out my own path with a brief stint in Expomal. However, this turned out to be my next break that fuelled my current success. It was there I built up Smartkids (another wildly successful baby and child fair) before it was bought out by a bigger company. Inspired by SmartKids, I started Mummy’s Market and eventually Baby’s Market, outperforming established names in the business to take its current place as market leader. What excites you most about your industry? Mummy’s Market is the industry leader in baby, kids, maternity and household with 80% market share and our clients – coupled with branding, advertising and exhibiting on Mummy’s Market platforms, we are seeing a 30-60% company growth year on year despite the downturn in the economy. With attendance of over 100k consumers per fair and serving 70-80% of pregnant mums, our actual business is in data, data collection and processing from consumer fairs. I am excited about how big data analytics from Mummy’s Market can be applied at every stage of the retail process such as data segmentation – for retailers now when mums are giving birth to sending relevant content over. This will transform and innovate the industry of baby fairs and Mummy’s Market, with the huge amount of data we process from our fairs yearly, is the forerunner in this disruption. With this, we have transformed the DNA of how digital business has always been done. Global online marketplaces are burning cash quickly to achieve big data analytics, but not us. Another testament to Mummy’s Market’s popularity is that huge marketplaces have been trying to pass off as Mummy’s Market. It shows that we are heading in the right direction and the most exciting part is, we are only at 10% of where we want to be – a platform where $1 billion gross market value products are transacted annually around Asia in a niche market. What’s your connection to Asia? I was born and bred in Singapore, and intend to stay in Singapore to build the Mummy’s Market brand. Favourite city in Asia for business and why? Singapore – if one can strategically become a leader in a small market like Singapore, its grounds to show that one’s business has an opportunity to grow further in larger countries. What’s the best piece of advice you ever received? “It is easy to become number 1 because the others can just copy and tweak to overtake you. It is more difficult to STAY number 1, because you have no one to copy. You have to innovate.” Who inspires you? Steve Jobs – he transformed the digital age. Without the invention of smartphones, mobile computing and mobile advertising would never have grown. He changed the way businesses and consumers communicate. Without the introduction of iPhones, mobile applications would have never existed the way we are using them today. What have you just learnt recently that blew you away? You no longer have to lick stamps to make it sticky. If you had your time again, what would you do differently? Nothing. I love my life and my family. And I love the platform Mummy’s Market has created to help businesses grow. How do you unwind? I play with my little 1 year old baby girl. Favourite Asian destination for relaxation? Why? Taiwan – cool weather with beautiful mountains and lake scenery. Everyone in business should read this book: 7 Habits of Highly Effective People – Stephen Covey Shameless plug for your business: Mummy’s Market has established its reputation as not just Singapore’s but Southeast Asia’s largest baby fair: Nearly S$100 million gross merchandise volume transacted on Mummy’s Market platforms annually 800,000 visitors at its fairs yearly 80% of all of Singapore’s baby product distributors in one convention 15-20% year on year increase in sales volume at every baby fair since its inception Apart from market dominance, Mummy’s Market also has the largest database of parents and the number 1 platform for MNCs and SMEs to reach out to this audience. From exhibitions, magazines, seminars to digital campaigns and roadshows. Mummy’s Market is the uncontested platform connecting parents and retailers in Singapore. How can people connect with you? [email protected] https://www.linkedin.com/in/william-chin-23910a9/ — This interview is part of the ‘Callum Connect’ series of more than 500 interviews Callum Laing is an entrepreneur and investor based in Singapore. He has previously started, built and sold half a dozen businesses and is now a Partner at Unity-Group Private Equity and Co-Founder of The Marketing Group PLC. He is the author two best selling books ‘Progressive Partnerships’ and ‘Agglomerate’. 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