Startup Star: Josiah Ng
The business: Intertain
What’s the big idea?
Intertain is a platform allowing you to book some of Australia’s best chefs to cook at your home for you and your friends.
Who is he?
Josiah Ng has already conquered the sporting arena as a three-time Olympic track cyclist for Malaysia. He’s also a former world number one and 2010 Commonwealth Games gold medallist. After retiring from cycling in 2015, Josiah began searching for his next challenge.
The idea for Intertain came to Josiah when he was looking to throw a spectacular birthday bash for his wife, Intertain co-founder Kim Ong. “I wanted to do something really cool for my wife’s 30th birthday and I thought, ‘Let’s invite 20 or 30 friends and have a world-class chef cook for us’,” he says. “I found that it wasn’t so easy. The process was tedious, time-consuming and expensive.”
The story so far
In mid-2015 Josiah got to work on what would become Intertain, approaching mentors and experts in the food industry. “This is about disruption of the restaurant and catering industry, so we knew we needed a restaurant expert, catering expert, food television producer and digital platform expert,” Josiah says.
The pieces began falling into place. Intertain launched last month and already boasts a line-up of culinary wizards including Michelin-starred chefs and chefs from big-name restaurants such as Rockpool.
“When a top-tier entrepreneur, one of the co-founders of Agoda, joined as an adviser and investor,” Josiah says. “That’s major validation for our model to have someone that high up with that reach and networks and sophistication come on board.”
What I’ve learnt
“A year-and-a-half ago I was a professional cyclist. So, to transition from that to the CEO of a tech venture – most people would have laughed at that idea,” Josiah says.
“What I did have was a vision, ability to execute, and the core characteristics that make great entrepreneurs. I’m very driven and I’m a people person and I know how to build teams. I know my weaknesses and I leverage my strengths and fill in the weaknesses by leveraging other people’s strengths.”
In five years’ time I’d like to …
“Take over the world. We want Intertain to be a new category of dining worldwide.”