StartupsHK Podcast: Norman Cheung of Boxful Talks About Raising Money in Hong Kong and the Future of Logistics Startups

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This is what hopefully will be the first of many podcast interviews by myself with startup founders talking about things important to startups.

I sat down with Norman Cheung, co-founder and CEO of Boxful.com (beautiful site BTW, and done IN HOUSE!) for lunch this week and recorded this 22-minute interview on his recent Series A investment. I learned a lot from Norman who I met in Shanghai last year when he was in another startup, and I’m impressed that he’s done quite a lot with Boxful since January of this year.

The US$6.6 million he raised from non-traditional investors has given me hope for HK’s startup investment scene. Not only did Norman raise from non-VC’s but non-tech companies. This again proves a main talking point of mine that if you want to do a startup in Hong Kong you need to play to its strengths which is finance, logistics, retail/manufacturing/trading and property.

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Hong Kong’s Self-Storage Startup ‘Boxful’ Raises US $1.5 Million in Seed Funding

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Despite being home to some of the world’s smallest living spaces, shopping is still the local and expat Hongkonger’s favorite pastime.

Unfortunately, according to real estate broker Colliers, approximately 820,000 Hong Kong households do not have access to a storage room. This bizarre mismatch of accumulating things without the space may be a problem for the consumer, but spells opportunity for the many self-storage startups that are cropping up.

Among them is Boxful, who has just raised a seed round of US $1.5 million from a group of investors in Greater China for their on-demand storage service. The idea is simple: The customer pays HK $49 a month for one storage box, then Boxful provides a free door-to-door pickup service. Each box can fit about 20 pairs of shoes, so if you have larger items such as luggage, golf clubs and sports equipment – Boxful can also accommodate. Of course, all of this can be done via your mobile device whether it’s arranging a pick-up or visual cataloging.

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