What is Aquarii?

Aquarii BD (Cambodia) is a Business Strategy and Development company incorporated in Phnom Penh, Cambodia. It is a subsidiary of Aquarii SG, a Singapore holding company that was established through a partnership between Oceanus Group, a public listed company on SGX and Mr Michael Tan, a former Singapore senior civil servant[1].

Our approach is to collaborate and partner with established and like-minded service providers in the business community to raise the standard of service and level of trust among foreign investors and businesses interested in Cambodia’s market potential and opportunities.

Specifically for the Cambodian market, Aquarii endeavors to position itself as the bridge or gateway for foreign investors and businesses to the Kingdom through a blended offering of its free access online business accelerator platform (www.AquariiBD.com) and a carefully curated network of contacts and partners. Through the latter, Aquarii is able to offer a comprehensive suite of trusted and reliable advisory and business support services (see Our Services), augmented by its strategic market insights on local market conditions, prospective partners, the effects of domestic and geopolitical developments on the local business and investment climate, among others. Aquarii is selective in the choice of projects and partners to ensure that the journey with partner clients will be productive and have a higher chance of success.

Aquarii’s Founding Philosophy and Approach

“Connecting Businesses, Creating Opportunities, Growing Partnerships”

Aquarii was established to address the existential challenges and hurdles that foreign SMEs / MNCs encounter when considering or trying to establish a business, investment or partnership in an emerging market, in particular Cambodia of their lack of familiarity or understanding concerning the latter.

Recognizing that the key is to help lower the ubiquitous trust deficit and suspicion level that businesspersons and investors encounter or deal with throughout the various stages of the business process and deliberations, Aquarii’s approach is to partner and connect businesses and investors, create opportunities and relationships, and help grow their partnerships, investments, projects and endeavors based on the values of trust, integrity and transparency, underpinned by the Singapore brand of efficiency, accountability and long-term planning.

Our Differentiating Factors

Aquarii BD is committed to offering businesses and investors in Cambodia easy access to our comprehensive suite of advisory and business support services by carefully curating a selection of partners to work with (See Our Services).

We believe that if we can help businesses and investors get past the initial hurdles of the journey – whether the journey is fact-finding, market feasibility, business setup, business expansion, deliberating on a location for their business, sourcing for local / investment partners, identifying bankable projects for investment, or simply looking for the right partners or service providers to work with – they will have a much higher chance of a successful venture. We want to partner businesses and investors on their journey, not to be just a contracted party. We believe in long term partnerships for successful outcomes over short-term transactions. Aquarii has access to a vast network of diverse contacts and resource persons[2] that Michael and his team have established over the years. As a former civil servant and the former Singapore Ambassador to Cambodia, he brings the highest standards of integrity and honesty that the Singapore civil service is known for. With his strong networking skills from years of overseas experience in various capacities of responsibility, he has successfully built a strong reputation and brand name amongst local and international communities in the Kingdom, and is able to tap on his network of contacts in government, business and civil society to access relevant and pertinent information, snippets, views and developments on diverse topics of interest. His tradecraft in analysis, problem solving, formulating strategies and strategic communication is a good blend with his intimate knowledge and familiarity of the complex local operating environment and culture, unique practices and behavioral idiosyncrasies.

Snapshot of our differentiating factors

Trust, integrity and transparency – These attributes and values are best exemplified through Aquarii, a Singaporean owned entity founded and headed by a Singaporean with a proven track record in Singapore and Cambodia. Aquarii will not hesitate to recommend against a partnership, a venture or provide additional insights and actionable suggestions because successful and sustainable outcomes are imperative to our founding philosophy and reputation.

A diverse network of contacts – Michael and his team and his Singapore partners have an extensive network of contacts, strategic partners and resource persons in Singapore, Cambodia, China among other countries to tap into or collaborate with.

Familiarity and knowledge of local business operating environment – Other than Michael’s personal experience and knowledge of Cambodia from his five and a half years in Cambodia (four and a half of which was as the Singapore Ambassador to the Kingdom), he has assembled a team of professionals with diverse competencies and knowledge to handle any project or enquiry.

Accountability – As a subsidiary of Aquarii SG which is incorporated in Singapore, businesses and investors can rest assured that Aquarii’s business ethics and professionalism will be held to the highest standard of scrutiny and accountability, safeguarded by Singapore’s rule of law.

Accessibility – Aquarii aims to be accessible to businesses and investors, to help them understand the local operating environment or address any queries or doubts they may have in the process of their business start-up phase. Our free access online business platform (www.AquariiBD.com) is a testament to this approach, and feel free to approach us to have a conversation or discussion (at no charge) if you need frank insights and assessment on prospective partners/partnerships or the viability of projects/investment opportunities. Michael has been accessible to many during his tenure as Ambassador and intends to continue to do so to the extent possible.

What’s in the Name

Aquarii is the name of the brightest stars in the Aquarius constellation. The zodiac constellation, which is found in a region of celestial space called the Sea, symbolises water, life, knowledge and wisdom. In astrology, Aquarius and Scorpio are the two smartest zodiac signs that possess the highest levels of analytical intelligence. Aquarius also means Cup Bearer, a trusted official who serves wine to the King and ensures that it is safe to drink. It represents influence, trust, integrity and loyalty.

The Aquarius constellation is located one degree north of the celestial Equator whereas Singapore is located one degree north of the terrestrial Equator. Aquarii BD (Cambodia) Co Ltd is Singapore-owned and a subsidiary of Aquarii SG which is incorporated in Singapore.

Aquarii’s founding partners aim to emulate the attributes of the Aquarius constellation and symbolic meanings associated with it – knowledge, wisdom, analytical intelligence, influence, trust, loyalty and integrity – to build a strong partnership with businesses and investors. They will also bring the Singapore brand of efficiency, accountability and long-term planning into its business model.

[1] With a career spanning more than two decades in the Foreign Service, Michael served in four overseas postings over 17 years: Myanmar, South Korea, Japan and most recently as Singapore’s Ambassador to Cambodia from June 2016 to Dec 2020.

[2] Michael and his team have built up a reservoir of goodwill and a diverse network of contacts, resource persons, strategic partners and industry experts in the Kingdom.