One of our missions at TravHQ has been to scout for exciting new travel startups which are solving real problems in the B2B/B2C space. One of the segments, where we’ve been focusing on lately is Tours & Activities including travel entertainment. Recent trends have seen the emergence of startups such as KKDay, Klook and BeMyGuest. All of these startups are different and have unique positioning in terms of their target market and offerings.
Today, we are featuring ShakaPass, Singapore’s brand new startup which helps travellers as well as city dwellers. We spoke to Eric Lim, the co-founder at ShakaPass about the startup’s journey and what makes them different in the competitive landscape.
Hi Eric, please give us some background about how you started ShakaPass.
ShakaPass was founded as a result of the frustration with the lack of a discovery and booking platform to allow users to spontaneously go out and enjoy the city. Both co-founders found it tedious to find out what there is to do at any given time and the process to book tickets is equally difficult. Existing solutions catered to one of either the discovery or booking process and there was no unified platform that addressed both needs.
We envision ShakaPass to be the preferred platform where users can go through curated entertainment choices and effortlessly book tickets to the event.
What does ShakaPass really mean?
ShakaPass comes from the words Shaka and Pass. Shaka is a Hawaiian inspired word and the shaka sign, as depicted in our logo, is a friendly gesture used to convey the “Aloha Spirit”. It also casually represents “hang loose” and we wanted people to be casual and enjoy life. Pass is associated with entry and our vision for ShakaPass users to access entertainment events, as does a frequently used wrist pass also seen in our logo.
We spoke earlier about the proposition on offer. What makes ShakaPass different?
- ShakaPass focuses on spontaneous and last minute going out needs, helping users find and book something really quickly; whether it is few hours from now, over the weekend or further out. Studies have shown that city dwellers usually book last minute and organisers overwhelmingly tend to have unsold seats for events and so ShakaPass is creating a win-win solution to address this situation.
- All content within ShakaPass is curated since the team handpicks and approves events created by organisers in the dedicated partner portal. The aim is to provide quality and relevant content from tailored shortlists rather than have the user filter through hundreds of things.
- ShakaPass is entertainment only (no conferences or business meetups) and its content is chosen for all users who want to enjoy the city. We offer not only popular tourist attractions but also provide activities that local resident users would discover and enjoy on a frequent basis. Examples of such activities include stand-up comedy shows, local music gigs and arts & craft activities.
Can you give us some more details about your core team?
We are a three member team but currently looking to have more additions. In addition, we’ve got two advisers and two interns.
What does your supplier and vendor network look like?
We’ve entered several direct agreements with organisers and venues to provide a more seamless experience for our users. We’re always looking to collaborate and for more details, we’re always happy to connect with the media.
For more details, please visit ShakaPass at www.shakapass.com. iOS users can download the app from here and Android users can download the app here. Try out their amazing event experiences for some fun beyond the typical touristy activities in Singapore.
Han has over 14 years of international experience at both MNCs and startups. Previously, he served as Director of Global Business Development & Strategic Partnerships at Korea Telecom and his former consulting and strategic planning experience furthered the startup itch that needed to be scratched. Han received his MBA from Emory University and graduated from UC Berkeley with a degree in Economics.
Eric has over 9 yrs of sales and business development experience with 3 yrs of regional exposure. Prior to ShakaPass, he was Sales Manager at Samsung Electronics and after receiving his MBA from National University of Singapore, he was Director of Major Account Team at Grey Scale, a local startup. In his free time, he loves to travel and is a foodie at heart.