Lynk expert network
The Lynk Global expert network was founded in Singapore in 2015 as The Straits Network. The founder has a background in private equity, and worked at Silver Lake in the years of its $200m investment in GLG.
Lynk Global is today a mid-sized expert network and has grown to serve clients also beyond Southeast Asia. According to some estimates, Lynk had around 100 employees in June 2020, working across 8 offices located in Singapore, Hong Kong, New York, and Mumbai, Shanghai, Hyderabad, Manila, and Toronto. As of June 2020, Lynk Global had a database of 840 000+ experts, one of the larger databases globally alongside GLG and Guidepoint. The company has at times struggled with retaining employees, and saw major layoffs during 2022. In addition, senior leaders departed in the winter 2022-23, including the CCO, CFO and SVPs across product, sales and marketing.
Lynk service offering
Lynk offers three services:
Lynk Answers - a classic expert network service (interviews, surveys and in-person meetings).
Lynk Circles - a platform similar to those offered by Zapnito and Arbolus (and originally also by Deepbench), to help clients organize their own advisor networks. This was posted as "coming soon" since June 2020, and was eventually launched in the summer of 2022.
Lynk Infinity - said to be an expert network aggregator, similar to the one offered by Inex One. Similar to Lynk Circles, this product was first announced in June 2020, and launched much later, in February 2023.
With the launch of Infinity, Lynk joined Prosapient as an expert network also offering an expert network workflow solution. Mosaic Research and Coleman Research both previously offered aggregators, but discontinued the service. At the time, people in the industry said it had been difficult to focus on the two business areas at once, as they were not fully synergistic.
At Inex One, we're intrigued by this move, and curious to see how it plays out. We firmly believe that expert networks and clients need better tech workflows, but we are curious to see if any expert network will agree to be aggregated by their competitor 🙃. The jury is out.
In the meantime, see for yourself how 300+ clients work with 20+ expert networks on Inex One.
Lynk's fundraising history
Lynk has done a number of fundraises over the years:
$1m in 2015 from Wavemaker Partners.
$4 million Series A in April 2017 from Hong Leong financial group, Hong Kong’s Cyberport, construction and engineering company Zhuhai Da Heng Qin (DHQ), and CRE Venture Capital.
$1m in 2019 led by MassMutual Ventures Southeast Asia (MMV SEA), with participation from Alibaba Entrepreneurs Fund and Wavemaker Partners.
$24m in January 2021, in a series B round from Brewer Lane Ventures, MassMutual Ventures, with participation from Alibaba Entrepreneurs Fund.
In June 2021, Lynk was rumored to be planning a Series C round of more than $30m, according to Mergermarket. As of February 2023, such a funding round has yet to be announced.
$5m in September 2021 from UBS, in a bid to cross-sell UBS analysts as experts on Lynk. This is similar to a 2019 deal between Macquarie bank and Deepbench, which was also investment and access to bank analysts in exchange for access to tech.