A study conducted by French agency Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM) revealed Asean to be a fertile ground for innovation driven by entrepreneurship.
According to the study, which was done in Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam, the region is among the most entrepreneurial in the world with 66% of the people in the region viewing entrepreneurship as a positive career choice, above the GEM global average of 62.46%.
The study also revealed that the region is ripe for entrepreneurship as neighbouring countries in Asia and in the Pacific Rim see Asean as providing good opportunities for trade, business and economic partnerships.
Executive director Mike Herrington said Asean is well positioned to play an increasingly important role on the global economic stage.
“An Asian Economic Community (AEC) is no longer an abstract, but a reality that the regional governments are urged to embrace,” he added.
He said the GEM report recommended 10 key focus areas to boost entrepreneurship and innovation across the region including building the professional ability of governments to better understand and serve entrepreneurs, and meaningful media communications.
The report also suggested investing in good IT infrastructure and creating tailored development programmes for entrepreneurs.
“Entrepreneurial capacity can be built through concerted mutual effort, with governments focusing on reforms that help to create enabling environments that foster innovation, facilitate more productive economies and, critically, open up new and better job opportunities for all segments of the population,” he said.
Herrington said these would address the concern in the report which showed only moderate levels of innovation. He noted that only over half of Asean entrepreneurs said their products or services are not new to customers.
Teraju aims for 40 Bumiputera listings within three years
The Bumiputera Agenda Steering Unit (Teraju) is targeting 40 bumiputera companies for listing in the next two to three years under Skim Jejak Jaya Bumiputera.
Its chief executive officer Datuk Husni Salleh said Teraju also targeted to increase the total market capitalisation of bumiputera-controlled public listed companies to between RM7bil and RM10bil during the period.
He said the agency has a sound plan to get the companies listed on Bursa Malaysia at the right time, depending on market conditions.
“Three companies are in the final stages of floatation next year. They have obtained approvals and are awaiting listing,” he told a recent media briefing on the Bumiputera Economic Empowerment Report 2015.
Launched by the Prime Minister in September 2013, Skim Jejak Jaya Bumiputera, which is jointly managed by Teraju and Ekuinas Nasional Bhd, is part of the Bumiputera Empowerment Agenda.
Husni said the scheme provides comprehensive advisory services to bumiputera companies with potential for listing.
Until August this year, 11 companies were listed on Bursa Malaysia through the scheme, with total market capitalisation of RM5.5bil.
Cradle Seed makes first investment
Cradle Fund Sdn Bhd’s unit, Cradle Seed Ventures Pte Ltd (CSV), has invested millions of US dollars into Involve Asia Technologies Sdn Bhd (IAT), an e-commerce marketing platform.
CSV chief executive officer Aziz Hussein said this was CSV’s first investment following its launch in June this year.
“The investment injected into IAT involves millions of US dollars and following this, CSV will hold a 20% stake in IAT,” he said, but declined to reveal the amount.
Aziz said CSV was impressed with IAT’s strategic focus and momentum since it started operations last year and the injection of funds would greatly assist it.
IAT CEO and co-founder Jimmy How said the investment would be used to expand its operations across South-East Asia.
“The funds will be used for our technology development and developing partnerships throughout the region,” said How.
To-date, IAT has over 80 online merchants and over 1,000 publishers in its network in Malaysia, Singapore and Indonesia.
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Saigon Business Corporation Pte Ltd (SBC) is incorporated in Singapore since 1994.