Tee-Ming Chew and his founder started Seedly to help people make smarter financial decisions.
What’s your story?
My interest in entrepreneurship started during my second year in university where I worked on an early stage startup, ShopBack, during my summer holiday. I was the first intern hired into the company and was involved in building the product from scratch. Through the internship, I was exposed to entrepreneurship and I was convinced that I needed to join the NUS Overseas Colleges (NOC) program to learn more about. I embarked on the program later that year where I spent a year working in Silicon Valley while doing part-time entrepreneurship study at Stanford University. The internship in Silicon Valley gave me a very different perspective on how things are done in America versus Asia. The part-time courses at Stanford allowed me to learn and talk to founders from Stripe, Houzz and many other companies. Both contributed greatly to my growth and enabled me to think differently.
During that same year, I met my co-founder Kenneth and we got to know each other very well. Together we ventured off on different startup ideas before working on Seedly, where our mission is to help people make smarter financial decisions.
What excites you most about your industry?
There are so many things that can be improved in the financial space, which means there are many opportunities out there waiting for us. It is also the uncertainties as no one else in the region is doing what we are doing now.
What’s your connection to Asia?
Born and raised in Singapore. I’m a Singaporean Chinese.
Favourite city in Asia for business and why?
Singapore. With the best infrastructure, high internet penetration and a supportive government backing entrepreneurship, the only possible reason of failure is on the entrepreneur.
What’s the best piece of advice you ever received?
Don’t try to make the right decision, make the decision right.
Who inspires you?
What have you just learnt recently that blew you away?
All that glitters is not gold. Whatever that you see that seems to be working may not be true.
If you had your time again, what would you do differently?
I would start my entrepreneurship journey earlier so that I can have more time to make more mistakes and learn from them.
How do you unwind?
Spending time with my loved ones.
Favourite Asian destination for relaxation? Why?
Taiwan. Food is great and people are friendly which makes it very relaxing.
Everyone in business should read this book:
Zero to One by Peter Thiel
Shameless plug for your business:
At Seedly, our mission is to help people make smarter financial decisions. We are an unbiased platform to learn, manage and discuss personal finance. You can download our free-to-use automated expense tracker app to manage your finance, available on iOS and Android.
How can people connect with you?
This interview is part of the ‘Callum Connect’ series of more than 500 interviews
Callum Laing is an entrepreneur and investor based in Singapore. He has previously started, built and sold half a dozen businesses and is now a Partner at Unity-Group Private Equity and Co-Founder of The Marketing Group PLC. He is the author two best selling books ‘Progressive Partnerships’ and ‘Agglomerate’.