H.E.R.O.’s Journey in Tech (13 July 2018) – THK, which first commercialized the linear guide technology in 1972, is the world’s No. 1 maker with more than half of global market share + Manage investments like Leonardo de Vinci – Think out of the box, be curious


  • Tight supply of key component rattles Japan’s machinery sector; Lack of linear guides holds up machine tool production for many industries; THK, which first commercialized the technology in 1972, is the world’s No. 1 maker with more than half of global market share, followed by Nippon Thompson and NSK. Japanese guide makers have a solid reputation for reliability, but the shortage appears to be shaking this trust, sending established machine tool makers in search of foreign suppliers, like Hiwin Technologies. The Taiwan-based company is constructing a guide manufacturing factory in the Japanese city of Kobe, with operations expected to kick off in 2020. Hiwin provides a wide range of products, from guides and ball-screws to servo and linear motors. “It is our strength that there is literally nothing we cannot produce,” said the Taiwanese maker, as it attempts to carve out a niche in the lucrative linear guide sector. (Nikkei)

  • SoftBank’s Son inspires Zozo marketing giveaways; Online fashion retailer to offer 100,000 free measurement bodysuits worldwide (Nikkei)
  • Toyota launches app in Hawaii that allows customers to unlock and start rental cars at parking stations (JapanTimes)
  • Hyundai makes its South Korean models Google-friendly; Automaker’s domestic vehicles will all have Android Auto as a standard feature (Nikkei)
  • Lens maker Largan bullish on new iPhone camera demand (Nikkei)
  • How iPhone Assembler Foxconn Can Raise Share Prices Over Five Years (Forbes)
  • Netwealth sees ‘once in a lifetime shift’ in wealth management (AFR)
  • Retail technology solutions provider Radiant Globaltech Bhd’s offer of 11 million new shares at 23 sen a share to the public was oversubscribed by 6.73 times. Its clients include department stores and hypermarkets to retail chains and convenience stores, including Giant, Cold Storage, AEON Big, Parkson, Watsons, Guardian and 99 Speedmart (Star)

FAANNMG – Facebook, Amazon, Apple, Nvidia, Netflix, Microsoft, Google

  • Microsoft debuts free tier in competitive workplace chat app market (Reuters)
  • Netflix and the rise of global scale media (or how media learned to love its customers) (Ensemble); Netflix Earnings: How Much ‘Success’ Is Priced In? (Barron’s)

Asia Tech & Innovation Trends

  • Behind the rise of Meituan-Dianping, China’s food-delivery giant (TIA)
  • Japan’s advanced snake robot for disaster site inspection; Latest version can scale ladders and wind its way up drainpipes (Nikkei)
  • GIC portfolio mix shifting to tech sector. GIC wants to specially focus on technology because the changes brought about by technological changes in the last few years are so pervasive. “In the past, start-ups tried to sell things to incumbents. They invent something, come up with new services and products and sell them to the incumbents. This time round, they are not just doing that, they want to take over and disrupt incumbents and whole industries”. GIC declined to reveal the percentage of their investments that went into the technology sector. Dr Jaensubhakij said that it is increasingly harder to define the technology sector as it is affecting more sectors. “Our approach has been that as companies and industries or sectors have to use tech, we want to invest in companies that use it well. There are traditional companies in traditional sectors, but they are changing what they are doing by using them well,” he said. He added that the investment firm is looking at how companies utilise technology increasingly as a differentiating factor when deciding whether to buy one company over another. (TODAY)
  • Niramai: The bot will see you now; The health care startup’s AI-based, radiation-free method is making breast cancer screening more accessible (Forbes)
  • ai: Your shopping companion; Niki is a chatbot that acts like a virtual shopkeeper (Forbes)

Global Tech & Innovation Trends

  • Disney’s ESPN puts videogaming on primetime; TV Deal to broadcast Activision Blizzard’s Overwatch (FT); Video Game Stocks Rise to Records Stoked by ESports Elation (Bloomberg)
  • High-profile health app under scrutiny after doctors’ complaints; Babylon advice service faces warnings it can miss symptoms of serious illness (FT)
  • Walmart faces tough hunt for Seiyu buyer in age of Amazon; Online shopping and rising retail costs discourage potential suitors (Nikkei)
  • All Ears: Always-On Listening Devices Could Soon Be Everywhere; Tiny microphones are moving us toward a world where all gadgets can respond to a voice command (WSJ)
  • Intel acquires small chipmaker to bolster efforts beyond CPUs (Reuters)
  • Broadcom’s ambitious deal history under CEO Hock Tan (Reuters)


  • Manage investments like Leonardo de Vinci – Think out of the box, be curious (MR)
  • How 20-Year-Old Kylie Jenner Built A $900 Million Cosmetics Fortune In Less Than 3 Years Using Social Media (Forbes)
  • Inversion: The billionaire thinking skill you were never taught in school (Ladders)
  • Detonate: Why – And How – Corporations Must Blow Up Best Practices (and bring a beginner’s mind) To Survive Hardcover – May 8, 2018 (Amazon)

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