We talked to Max KS Teh, Founder & CEO at CrowdPlus about raising funds the smart way and here is what he said about it.
First of all, how are you and your family doing in these COVID-19 times?
Max KS Teh: We are doing fine in Hong Kong, working from home whenever necessary and kids schooling from home mostly last year.
Tell us about you, your career, how you founded CrowdPlus.
Max KS Teh: I founded CrowdPlus 5 years ago and collaborated closely with the Malaysian government to shape the launch of equity crowdfunding (ECF) in Malaysia back then. ECF was in nascent days then and today has grown much in Malaysia and elsewhere. We are great believers in ECF and the power of the crowd being brought out as an alternative source of funding for SMEs and start-ups.
Please visit https://www.crowdplus.asia/team.php to see my brief profile.
How does CrowdPlus innovate?
Max KS Teh: ECF leverages on the power of investment through online regulated platforms, so we have our own platform and investment engine which we regularly update and upgrade to bring in new features to improve and enhance the user experience for our investing community and visitors
How does the coronavirus pandemic affect your business finances?
Max KS Teh: It has made working with some people and businesses more challenging, but mostly it has improved, and we have adapted to the new norm of working virtually and social distancing. The pandemic has quickened digitization in general and more people are glued to the online world as their attention shifted from the physical world, which has brought certain benefits to ECF and CrowdPlus.
Did you have to make difficult choices regarding human resources, and what are the lessons learned?
Max KS Teh: In some ways, we did reasonably well during the pandemic so fortunately, no real difficult HR issues.
How did your customer relationship management evolve? Do you use any specific tools to be efficient?
Max KS Teh: At first, it was a challenge to adapt and change, but we eventually adapted and used many online and virtual tools including Zoom, Microsoft Teams, Webex, Facebook Live, Skype, Google Meet, Whatsapp and emails etc.
Did you benefit from any government grants and did that help keep your business afloat?
Max KS Teh: The grants helped somewhat to cushion some painful months, but we were not entitled to a lot, so the help was limited.
Your final thoughts?
Max KS Teh: The pandemic has changed the world, and social distancing will be the new norm for a long time to come. Everyone will need to adapt to this and recalibrate their lives and businesses and deal with the pandemic with a ‘warrior’ mindset of proactively tackling things and issues. Those who wait or act reactively will either go bust or miss out! Businesses will need to pivot quickly to survive or do well and not wait for things to be like pre-Covid. There is no such thing as pre-Covid anymore! Everyone needs to wake up! Everyone should stay healthy and safe, being healthy is our best defence to catching Covid or recover from it if you should catch it!
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