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Green Is The New Black

RISE Up: The Sustainable Start-ups Making Waves in Asia

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From autonomous robots to AI-powered exploration – leaders from some of the biggest players in the tech scene rubbed shoulders with the most exciting start-ups in Asia at the RISE Tech Conference in Hong Kong last week.

Naturally, we would never miss an occasion to scout out some of the newest players in sustainability and what we found was an incredible array of concepts, brands and startups showcasing their ideas in a bid to secure funding and turn their start-ups into a company that can change the world. While we commend every person there for their efforts and their commitment to the cause, here is a selection of our favourite ideas from the event…


A fintech (short for financial technology) focused on bringing together consumers, retailers, corporations and NGOs using blockchain technology. The platform combines projects aligned with the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals with payment systems and contributors, providing zero fiction and added value benefits.  The business has launched its Beta phase in Paris, London and Hong Kong. Take a peek at the app interface below:

A look at the interface of the Kizo app


Reportedly 20% of carbon emissions from cars come from people looking for a place to park. To counter this issue, Parkingbnb offers drivers a way to find the best parking space based on preferences including price, fuel consumption and location through a platform that uses unique technologies and algorithms.


We’re all aware of the destructive effect of plastic straws on the environment, but the alternatives can be expensive or inconvenient. RiceStraws are a 100% biodegradable solution from Malaysia that behave like plastic straws, but unlike paper options, continue to stay firm for up to ten hours in cold drinks. ricestraws.net.

Liter of Light

A global grassroots movement that uses inexpensive and readily available materials to provide high-quality solar lighting to people with limited or no access to electricity. The community-based utility from the Philippines has so far installed more than 350,000 bottle lights in more than 15 countries and created local jobs, teaches green skills and empowers local communities.

A quick introduction to how Litre of Light is lighting up impoverished communities. 

Ecoed Life

An environmental education and behavioural change initiative designed to be fun and interactive, Ecoed has created an app that invites players to challenge each other with games on water, waste, health and wellbeing that helps educate around environmental impact.


An aquaculture company that wants to remove antibiotic residues from fish farms in China and become the go-to platform for buying chemical-free fish. The company had developed a sustainable smart farming solution to produce healthy seafood that disrupts the aquaculture landscape in China.


RISE Tech Conference took place in Hong Kong from July 8 – 11 2019 with over 15,000 attendees. The next edition will run in July of 2020. 

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Singaporean-based Brit Hannah has lived in Asia for four years and works in marketing and communications. She's passionate about sustainability, particularly the new models and technological innovations that are driving change. She spends her time exploring the region and learning more about the environmental issues affecting people on the ground.