In the start-up world, Silicon Valley based Y Combinator is most respected incubator in the world. Its success has resulted in a number of incubator clones around the world (it’s not just start-ups that get copied). A while ago, I interviewed Jamie Lin, the founding partner of appWorks Ventures to get his insight into establishing such an incubator in Taiwan. Just last Friday, I attended their second Demo Day in Taipei.

Set in the National Taiwan University Hospital Conference Centre, the room was filled with investors, students and start-up junkies, eager to see how the second class of 10 start-ups have progressed. Taiwan must really be  sprouting start-ups because appWorks has already accepted 28 start-ups into its next batch.

Led by AJ Chen the team of five focuses on online luxury discount shopping. In Taiwan, about 25% of online purchases are for women’s luxury goods and with brands used as a status symbol, the market makes sense.  The business is inspired by the super successful American company Gilt.com and has China counterparts in Wooha.com and ihaveu.com. In contrast to Gilt.com, you don’t need to be a member to shop with Luxjoy. Offering everything from clothing, shoes, bags, accessories, watches, furniture, and home and boutique hotel offers a lot at affordable prices. With a proven business model and an energetic team, Luxjoy should believe ‘life is joyful’.

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Jason Lim

Jason is an Australian born Chinese living in Beijing, specializing in entrepreneurship, start-ups and the investment eco-system in China, especially in the tech and social area.