Singapore Press Holdings (SPH), a media conglomerate of The Lion City has inked a joint venture with Malaysian company RecomN Technologies to run its business directory site on a new website known as Recommend.sg.
Recommend.sg connects customers to service providers, with an initial focus on the events space such as party planners, photographers, food and beverage providers before gradually expanding to other categories like home and lifestyle.
The website incorporates SPH’s online business directory portal, ST Directory, which contains around 100,000 small businesses. RecomN will be in charge of the tech and operations while SPH will be leading the marketing side.
Jes Min Lua, the co-founder of RecomN said, “We are really excited about this collaboration as it gives us access to a marketing powerhouse, and makes us the largest service platform in Singapore on the day we launched.”
The deal will see the wholly-owned subsidiary, SPH Interactive taking a 33.33 percent stake in RecomN for S$980K (about US$708K), as well as a cash payment of S$10K (about US$7.2K) and S$970K (about US$700K) worth of considerations.
“We wanted to work with a partner that is deeply entrenched in the lives of Singaporeans, and there is no better-known name than SPH,” said RecomN co-founder and Singapore Country Manager Alex Tan. “The team is entrepreneurial and dynamic, so we look forward to learning and working together with them.”
Based in Malaysia, RecomN is a portal for a number of different services, from cleaners to technicians and music teacher. It recently rebranded to Recommend.my and allow users to contact service providers directly, browse user reviews and check their portfolios through photo albums.
“When I first met the RecomN co-founders, I was impressed with their vision of transforming the services industry and their fast execution to become the market leader after 2 years,” said Julian Tan, the Executive Vice President of the SPH Digital Division,
RecomN was founded in 2014 and received a US$1 million (about US$723K) investment from Gobi Partners. The company expanded its services to Thailand and Indonesia in 2015.
In Malaysia, it runs Recommend.my, the Indonesian site is known as Sejasa.com and the Thai website is Helpdee.com. The company says more than 20,000 people use the startup to find work.