October 17, 2013

Shop ZaoZao at Web Wednesday HK (V77)

We're very lucky to catch another global internet entrepreneur, Vicky Wu, whose recently moved her Hong Kong start-up, ZaoZao, to New York City to be incubated by CommerceWorks.

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In the past year, ZaoZao has won several nomimations:
*Named one of the "Crowdfunding Pioneers in Asia-Pacific" by TechInAsia (Aug 2012)
*Listed as an "Innovative 'Presumption' Brands" in Trend Watching (Nov 2012)
*Called one of the "Top 15 Hottest Crowdfunding Sites Out There" by Business Insider (Nov 2012)

Vicky is a multi-talented lady, an accomplished concert cellist, neuroscientist and former banker, so has a punchy story to tell. Her business partner (on the left in the photo below), Xiang Ling Cai, was a former fashion accessory buyer for Kering/Gucci.

Personally, I like this description of how their idea came to fruition, "Over hundreds of emails, coffee sessions and sleepless nights, they came up with ZAOZAO. Within a week, both girls quit their jobs to dedicate their energy to creating a platform that could help turn designers’ dreams into a reality, one design at a time."

The cocktail party line to describe their budding business, is "Kickstarter meets Fab meets Moda Operandi".  Or in a more wordy way, "ZaoZao is an e-commerce startup, selling one-of-a-kind pieces including jewellery, accessories and handbags in an online, curated marketplace. We are differentiated by their travelogue concept, engaging Western women in a destination-shopping adventure where they discover beautifully curated, one-of-a-kind pieces by up-and-coming Asian designers. ZAO means 'early' ('早')and 'discover' ('找')in Chinese." (Don't mean to be pedantic but it means 'find' or 'look for' and is pronounced 'zhao').

In just over one year, ZaoZao has attracted users from over 20 countries, contacted 500+ designers across Asia and funded over 45 projects. And now she is about to pivot the business from "crowd-funding" to "curating" Asian designers. Follow ZaoZao on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram.

Doors open at 6:30pm with the interview starting at 7:15pm on Wednesday 23rd October, 2013 at Bisous, 9/F, LKF Tower, 33 Wyndham St, Central, Hong Kong.

Sign up on Facebook or MeetUp.

Download your mobile smartpass from pass.is/webwed. [Provided by Passkit].

The entrance fee of HK$100 includes a complimentary drink and the opportunity to meet driven internet entrepreneurs and digital media folk.

Do bring along any budding female entrepreneurs as Vicky is sure to motivate them to leave their cushy banking jobs for the life of a launcher!

Earlier this year, I had the privilege of interviewing Vicky Wu at Silicon Dragon Hong Kong 2013 in Cyberport which was captured and shared on YouTube.

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