Manila's startup scene is heating up

Some of you may have read that I was in Manila launching my Lean Startup workshop series, which was a huge hit. The room, hosted by Voyager Innovations (a division of Smart) was crammed full of Manila's brightest startups keen to learn. During my visit to Manila, I had the pleasure of being introduced to a number of Manila's key contributors, including IdeaSpace. I'm dam lucky in my line of work, I tend to get invited to hundreds of cities around the world. Where delegates are keen to show me the progress of their startup and innovation scene. And Manila was no exception. In fact my hosts were able to have me leaning towards launching my next startup in Manila. It's not huge secret that I regularly turn to the Philippines for Creative Tech expertise, so extending that affiliation seemed likely.


My visit to IdeaSpace gave me a first hand look at the progress they've made as a leading incubator for the country. Many of their supported ideas have gone onto show strong threads of success, which includes one venture that sit in my portfolio, Invitre. A service that connects users together, helping make meet-ups fun and spontaneous by translating online interactions into meaningful offline meet ups. What IdeaSpace is doing for Manila is truly impactful, it's great to see.

Overall my visit to Manila was full of surprise, excitement and positivity for the startup scene outlook. Something I cherish as another city in South East Asia looks to build the strength of the regional startup scene.

Here are a few awesome people I met while in Manila. Apologies to those who already know they are awesome, I kept this list to those I was meeting for the first time.

Can't wait until I visit again... next time I'll be taking an entire series of workshop over with me. Exciting times ahead

Notable Meets:

danellaDanella Yujuico Yaptinchay, Maestro: Home Grown @hidanella

Homegrown Media are starting a movement that champions enterprising thought. They are working to provide Filipino entrepreneurs and startup businesses with the tools and resources to empower and embolden them towards reaching their goals. Sounds like a perfect local partner for my ambitions. is better known as an online magazine. They collate and feature stories that inspire, practical tips that cut through the frills, and creative ideas that tickle our imaginations. They began with a community that is willing to collaborate, share knowledge, exchange ideas. And, the photo is of her feet. Interesting spin on the idea of a profile photo.


jorgeJorge Azurin, Country Manager. @JorgeAzurin

Currently the Country Manager for, the world's largest online marketplace for outsourcing. Over $1B in projects have already been posted with over 7M registered users. Jorge owns several online sites. Has a joint venture with other entrepreneurs to create new businesses.