4 Ideas At Startup Weekend Beijing


Apricot Forest: Winner of Startup Weekend Beijing

It was relatively cold for this Singaporean in Beijing yesterday, but that didn’t deter me from dropping in on Startup Weekend, organized by the good folks at Red Pagoda. The session was fun, with good ideas and good company. Here are the four ideas which I managed to take note of:

Apricot Forest

Problem: Most doctors have little time to keep in touch with the latest research journals and updates.

Solution: A mobile app with medical content (from research papers, magazine, and events) to help doctors keep informed even while on the go. On top of that, there’s also a social layer for doctors to follow and discuss people and content. Some possible business models are ads and selling research reports to doctors.


Problem: Some folks just don’t have any fashion sense.

Solution: Lianshang is an outfit check-in which is powered by user-generated advice on fashion. It works much like Fashism. Competitors in China include online fashion portal Mogujie (6 million users), Meilishuo (3 million users) — but none have gone into mobile yet. Possible revenue models include affiliate and referral sales, consumer data syndication, and market analysis.


Problem: Learning Chinese is tough.

Solution: SinoSlam gamifies the learning process. It is a game which helps to improve your Chinese by beating bots or challenging friends. The fights are basically quizzes that test your Chinese knowledge and through these “battles”, you improve scores like mianzi (face), quality, and badges. The app will also recommend Chinese books for users to improve their scores and rankings. SinoSlam has a very interesting business model. Here’s how it works: If a McDonald’s bot teaches you how to say hamburger or fries in Chinese, chances are, the brand will stick to the users’ mind if the words in Chinese are recalled and used. According to SinoSlam, there are one million folks in China and 30 million abroad who are learning Chinese.


Problem: Mix-match dating in China is awkward (and it sucks).

Solution: Make dating fun by replicating the “gokon experience” online. It is essentially an online dating organizer. It also includes group buying deals and discount coupons to encourage outings. The service is similar to Ignighter and Grubwithus but is unique in the Chinese market.

Note: There were actually five ideas presented but I only managed to take notes of four.

(And yes, we're serious about ethics and transparency. More information here.)

Read More