Tea Leaves Podcast

© 2021 The Asia Group

September 8, 2021

Shweta Rajpal Kohli of Sequoia India on Bridging Innovation and Regulation

Shweta Rajpal Kohli is Chief Public Policy Officer, Sequoia India and Southeast Asia. She advises the fund’s Indian and Southeast Asian portfolio companies on regulatory risks and engages policymakers on matters related to India’s startup ecosystem. Prior to joining Sequoia, Shweta was the head of public policy for India and South Asia at Uber, and then at Salesforce, following a two-decade career as a leading business journalist and TV news anchor. With 2021 projected to see a record of around USD 20 billion invested in Indian startups, Shweta and Rexon discussed the tremendous opportunities in India’s innovation ecosystem, including in the FinTech, EdTech, and enterprise tech sectors. They also weighed the regulatory challenges surrounding data localization and overseas listing for Indian startups, and Shweta offered advice for CEOs of multinational tech companies as they navigate India’s evolving policy environment.

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August 23, 2021

How PichaEats Empowers Kuala Lumpur’s Refugee Community Through Food

PichaEats is a Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia-based social enterprise in the food industry, focused on supporting the city’s large refugee community. PichaEats partners with refugee chefs to cook and package meals based on the chefs’ personal recipes, and sells and delivers those meals to individuals and catered events across the city. On this episode we spoke with Kim Lim, who alongside co-founders Suzanne Ling and Lee Swee Lin transformed PichaEats from a college service project into a self-sustaining business that has delivered more than 350,000 meals and partnered with 35 refugee chefs. Kim shared moving stories about the displaced individuals with whom PichaEats has partnered, and discussed PichaEats’ growth path and strategic vision, the challenges of running a social enterprise through COVID-19, and the status of refugees in Malaysia. She also shared some juicy details about the biryani, lamb-stuffed eggplant, and chicken mandi that have made PichaEats famous.

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August 8, 2021

Anna Fifield on What Drives Kim Jong-un

Anna Fifield was Beijing bureau chief for The Washington Post from 2018 to 2020, before which she covered the Korean Peninsula and Japan as the Post’s Tokyo bureau chief from 2014 to 2018. Anna is the author of The Great Successor: The Divinely Perfect Destiny of Brilliant Comrade Kim Jong Un, and an authority on North Korean society and politics, having visited the country a dozen times to report on the Kim regime. She has also traveled across Asia to interview North Korean defectors, giving her rare insight into the lives of ordinary people in North Korea. Anna now lives in her home country of New Zealand, where she is the editor of the Dominion Post. Anna painted a rare portrait covering the totality of North Korean politics and society, including her analysis of Kim Jong-un’s leadership, North Korea’s nuclear program and the prospects for denuclearization, China’s relationship with the Kim regime, the state of human rights in North Korea and the lives of the North Korean people, and more.

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July 25, 2021

Dr. Evan Medeiros on Biden’s China Strategy

Dr. Evan S. Medeiros is Penner Family Chair in Asian Studies at the Georgetown University School of Foreign Service and a Senior Advisor at The Asia Group. Dr. Medeiros served on the National Security Council for six years under U.S. President Barack Obama, first as Director for China, Taiwan, and Mongolia, and then as President Obama’s top advisor for U.S. policy in Asia. Combining expertise as a scholar of Chinese politics with first-hand experience at the height of U.S. China policy, Evan reflected on several critical issues in U.S.-China relations: U.S. President Joe Biden’s China strategy, Chinese President Xi Jinping’s leadership and rising nationalism in China, balancing interdependence and escalating risks in the bilateral relationship, and the outlook for engagement between U.S. and Chinese leaders.

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July 12, 2021

NBA Asia Chief Scott Levy on Sports Culture in Asia and the Outlook for the Tokyo Olympics

Scott Levy is Managing Director of NBA Asia, where he oversees development and expansion of the National Basketball Association’s strategic initiatives across the Indo-Pacific region – excluding China. With the Tokyo Olympics opening later this month, Scott spoke with Tea Leaves about sports and consumer culture in different Asian markets, the NBA’s response to COVID-19, and the outlook for the Tokyo Olympics. You can access a full video of the conversation at www.youtube.com/channel/UCwSvkY8tzvEq21kNOjYILXQ.

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