Facebook: $50 Million+ to Asia-Pacific Developers From FbStart

Facebook said its FbStart initiative to assist mobile application startups has doled out more than $50 million to developers in the Asia-Pacific region.

Facebook said its FbStart initiative to assist mobile application startups has doled out more than $50 million to developers in the Asia-Pacific region.

The social network introduced FbStart at its 2014 F8 global developer conference.

Facebook detailed its efforts in India in a Newsroom post:

More developers are building apps with Facebook in India than any other country outside the U.S., and today, more than 75 percent of top-grossing apps in India are integrated with Facebook. Of the $50 million in benefits distributed to Asia-Pacific startups through FbStart, more than $20 million went to startups in India. And this week we’re bringing FbStart to developers in Bangalore and Gurgaon with full-day events dedicated to helping them grow their businesses.

The FbStart World Tour also featured August events in Hong Kong, South Korea, Taiwan and India, and strategic partnerships director Ime Archibong, who keynoted both events in India, said in the Newsroom post:

I’m incredibly excited to be back in India this week. There’s an amazing opportunity for Indian-based developers to work with Facebook to grow their businesses, and we are doubling down on our investment in the country through programs like FbStart and the Internet.org Platform.

In a post on the Facebook developer blog, strategic partner development executive Michael B. Huang offered three success stories, for Carousell, Cardback and Samosa:

Singapore-based Carousell is a lifestyle marketplace app that makes selling as simple as taking photos and allows anyone to create a free listing to sell their items in just 30 seconds. Since it launched in 2012, Carousell has grown to have more than 8 million listings and millions of items successfully transacted across Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia and Taiwan.

Through FbStart, Carousell’s team was able to run and test marketing campaigns with their Facebook mobile app ad credit. The quality of users acquired and cost targets have exceeded expectations with the help of lookalikes from custom audiences of their top buyers and sellers. They also used FbStart’s partner benefits, including Transifex to scale to multiple countries and languages and Mobile Action to improve their app store optimization. Additionally, Carousell uses Facebook Platform products such as Facebook Login, social plugins and Facebook Analytics for Apps.


Delhi-based app Cardback helps cardholders and wallet users identify their best ways to pay and maximize their rewards and savings for every transaction they make. It is a payment recommendation platform that helps credit, debit, prepaid cardholders and mobile wallet users make smarter payment decisions.

As a member of FbStart, Cardback has used Facebook ad credits to increase the number of people installing its app by five times in the past six months, now with 50 percent of people coming to its app through Facebook ads.

Cardback also uses Facebook Login, which now accounts for 60 percent of signups on iOS and Windows. Through Facebook Analytics for Apps, it is also able to better understand its customers and make more informed decisions based on user engagement, demographic information and retention patterns.


Samosa, based in Hyderabad, offers a curated collection of clips from popular movies that people can share with their friends, including punchlines, proverbs, love proposals, witty responses, funny expressions and song clips. FbStart’s free tools and services helped the team focus their time and effort on building their app, rather than spending precious time searching and deciding which services to use to fulfill their needs.

With Parse, Samosa was able to quickly iterate on its app. As an Android-first company, it was able to ship more than 10 different versions of the user interface in the span of just a month by relying on a Parse-powered backend. Samosa also uses Facebook Login to sign up customers, and it integrated with Messenger to bring its collection of clips to even more conversations.


Facebook director of platform product Deborah Liu also commented on FbStart’s Asia-Pacific efforts in a Facebook post, saying:

In May, I went to APAC to meet with developers and talk about Facebook Platform. The amount of energy and entrepreneurial excitement there was contagious. I met with developer teams of just a couple folks who showed me the fun and beautiful apps they built. And the next day, I met companies who touch hundreds of millions of users with their mobile services. The growth and innovation in the APAC region has been amazing. In fact, our FbStart App of the Year was from APAC, beating out all other regions.

I am really excited that our platform can help developers build, grow and monetize their apps no matter what the size. Our team spent the past month out in APAC meeting up with FbStart developers in Hong Kong, South Korea, Taiwan and India, and hearing them share their stories reminds us why we do what we do in Platform. Today we shared that our program has distributed benefits of $50 million to over 1,000 startups in the region, and I am excited to see how they grow and have impact from here.

david.cohen@adweek.com David Cohen is editor of Adweek's Social Pro Daily.
Publish date: August 11, 2015 https://stage.adweek.com/digital/50-million-asia-pacific-fbstart/ © 2020 Adweek, LLC. - All Rights Reserved and NOT FOR REPRINT