Singaporean Capital Feasts On Dining App
The rather cleverly named startup Burpple, a mobile app and website that offers dining recommendations based on community reviews, has landed a $6 million Series A from private equity investor Tembusu Partners, Singapore’s SPH Media Fund and Triumph Capital. This comparatively large financing for a Singaporean startup follows an initial $500,000 seed round in 2012 and a later extension of $250,000.
Based in Singapore and popular among fodies in Singapore and Kuala Lumpur, Burpple claims 4 million users across some 100 countries. The app features guided curation by in-house tastemakers and select users within a community — with an interface that is similar to that of Yelp, encouraging photo uploads.
Discovery features are active in Singapore and Malaysia currently and users in any location can curate local food lists. The startup’s Burpple for Business program, rolled out earlier this year, claims 1000 restaurant owners who use the service to track their performance on Burpple and connect with diners.
With the new funds, Burpple plans to beef up Burpple for Business, enhance features, expand across other “food capitals” in Asia with localized recommendation guides, and increase its presence in existing markets among restaurant owners and establishments.
The cofounders plan to add to their lean 15-person team by doubling the five-person data science team and adding engineers and product developers.
This food discovery space in Asia is hot. Burpple competes directly with established players such as Hong Kong’s OpenRice (which extends to China, India, Taiwan, Thailand and the Philippines) and Singapore’s HungryGoWhere, owned by Singtel.