A PLEASANT SURPRISE
“It came out of the blue.” Chrissy, PaperplaneCo founder, says recalling how she learned that PM Lee was going to visit the PaperplaneCo office.
“Someone from JTC just popped by, and said, ‘Do you mind if we invite the PM to visit your office?’ I jumped in with my usual enthusiasm. It only struck me later what a tremendous opportunity this was.”
In January 2015, Block 71, Singapore’s equivalent of the early Silicon Valley was expanding into LaunchPad, a startup ecosystem developed by JTC, the state-owned industrial property developer. An official opening ceremony had been planned, and JTC had chosen PaperplaneCo as one of three start-ups to host the guest of honour, PM Lee.
It wasn’t difficult to guess why we’d been chosen. In a block full of traditional tech and R&D startups, we stood out as a creative studio with our bootstrapped, arty interiors. We’d been relatively successful too.
As the magnitude of the upcoming visit began to sink in, we wondered – how could we delight a Prime Minister, someone who was used to being presented to everyday?