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Hot Air Balloons

Cambodia’s #1 startup & innovation podcast!
Hosted by Max Thornton and Dominic Kalousek

120+ guests
50k+ listeners

10m+ views
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Rising Giants was created in 2020 after realizing there were limited outlets for gaining insight into the startup founder, investor and creative scene in  Cambodia. Rising Giants serves as an upbeat medium for changemakers to share their experience building in some of the most dynamic and positively evolving countries in Southeast Asia.

Our mission is to talk to entrepreneurs and investors to help understand what it takes to have bold ideas and build the business disruptors of tomorrow, in some of the most challenging, but highest potential markets of the region. We sit down and learn from inspirational individuals understanding their journey to being a Rising Giant.

Join us as we explore the varied playbooks of innovators in the region, bringing to light how they are driving forward immense positive change in the world around them!

Proactive, passionate and positive. From London (UK), Max has spent his career exploring areas of the investment univers overlooked and neglected by the mainstream; frontier markets, impact investing and DeFi. Max has lived and worked in the USA, Europe, the Gulf, East Africa, China and Southeast Asia.


Max has worked with Sharpe Capital (fintech/crypto VC), Oxford Business Group (emerging market research/consulting in Africa and Asia) and OBOR Capital (Mekong region VC) prior to Co-Founding Rising Giants. Max is also the Co-Founder and COO of Satori Giants, a venture studio Realizing Radical Founders in the Mekong region.

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From Charlotte, North Carolina (USA) Dominic has a deep passion for supporting mission-driven startups in Southeast Asia to grow and scale. Falling in love with the region after a post-graduation backpacking trip, Dominic returned to Cambodia after working for Bank of America for 3 years.


During his time in Cambodia, he worked with OBOR Capital as a Financial Consultant, a Finance Lead for Sevea, a frontier market consulting company, as well as an Investment Analyst at Uberis Capital, an Impact Investment Venture Capital fund.His goal is to make an impact by developing frontier markets through forging conversations with founders and investors who are building the business disruptors of tomorrow. Dom is also the Co-Founder and CFO of Satori Giants, a venture studio Realizing Radical Founders in the Mekong region.

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