RealTime IT News

Intel, VCs Invest $20 Million Into Asian Rewards Network

HelloAsia.com, a regional site that offers rewards for usage, has raised over US$20 million in its first-round of funding.

The investors include financial institutions Greylock, H&Q Asia Pacific and TMCT Ventures and technology companies Critical Path, Inc. and Intel Corp.

The start-up is promoting its site as the first Web-based service in Asia to reward members for social relationships such as emailing and commerce relationships such as shopping.

Subscribers to HelloAsia's AsiaRewards program and its free multi-language AsiaMail service can earn points redeemable for prizes from partner institutions like Chinatrust Commercial Bank, LG Securities, National University of Singapore and Warner Music Asia Pacific.

HelloAsia is utilizing messaging technology from Critical Path, a leading e-mail solutions provider and HelloAsia investor.

"This new concept of e-commerce service, where users are given actual incentives to use the Internet, be it using email, or on-line shopping, can be considered a paradigm for consumers. " said Pete Hitchen, Senior Internet Analyst at research group International Data Corp.

"We're fortunate to have world-class investors, technology relationships and merchant partners," said Chih Cheung, CEO of HelloAsia.com.

The company will use the funds to support its growth in Asia, including worldwide locations in Hong Kong, Korea, Singapore and Taiwan.