Business & Economy Startups What SendBird does to scale in Asia –and get it right

What SendBird does to scale in Asia –and get it right




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Asia is a promising market for major tech companies, but there are factors that they often forget to count in

SendBird APAC Sales Manager Yeji Yoon (right) with e27 Editor Kevin McSpadden

In May, chat and messaging API and SDK developer SendBird announced that they have raised an additional US$50 million to their US$52 million Series B funding round –bringing the total number to US$102 million.

The number was mind-blowing as it was bigger than what giants such as Uber, Zoom, and Lyft raised in their respective Series B funding round.

However, the average joes and janes might not be familiar with the company’s identity. But once their leading clients such as Go-Jek and Carousell were mentioned, it would be easy to recognise the works that they have done.

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“We want to empower our businesses and customers by not getting them distracted by chat building and maintenance … We take care of the entire back to front technology,” SendBird APAC Sales Manager Yeji Yoon explained to e27 Editor Kevin McSpadden on the second day of Echelon Asia Summit 2019 at Singapore Expo, Friday, May 24.

Messaging services itself tend to scale really fast, especially when it is included in a platform that handles millions of users on a regular basis. How does SendBird maintain consistency as it scales rapidly?

Also Read: 15 more companies will join us as exhibitors for Echelon Asia Summit 2019

“We invest in chat technology. We have invested hundreds of million in chat technology, and now we have another millions to invest in it. Today, for example, we process over a billion messages a month in 12,000 apps,” the manager explained.

“Scalability is actually what we specialise in,” she stressed.

SendBird has its root in both America and Asia. While their headquarter is located in San Mateo, California, their APAC headquarter is located in Seoul.

With a total of five offices in the continent, SendBird sees Asia as a promising market.

“Asia is part of our DNA and it is a huge market. Especially since we have empowered so many innovative unicorns out there,” Yeji Yoon said.

Also Read: 2019: A hell of a year for marketers with chat and voice bots

“If you look at GDP growth, population growth, and mobile penetration adoption, it is natural to say that all these huge apps are going to come out of Asia, and that it makes sense to have a SaaS company that targets the Asian market,” she continued.

However, entering Asia is not without its own challenges. Major tech companies such as Uber had tried to tackle the market before, yet somehow unable to navigate the cultural differences between the regions.

This is why SendBird puts a strong emphasis on diversity.

“One of our core values is global citizenship. We were born out of Asia and we are optimised in Asia as much as we optimised globally,” Yeji Yoon explained.

“We embrace diversity and we try to be as local as possible by providing local support. We also build up a culture and investing in it to continuously serve all of our customers,” she added.

Also Read: Inspired by the lack of reproductive health awareness in Myanmar, Myhealthcare allows patients to chat with doctors

In choosing a potential partner or client, SendBird considers how its services can add value for the company’s works itself.

“We do not want to be just another call centre,” she concluded.

The post What SendBird does to scale in Asia –and get it right appeared first on e27.

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