Best Practices for Startups to Enter Southeast Asia Marketplaces

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A growing middle class, high smartphone penetration, young population, and disposable income make Southeast Asia an attractive destination for European companies. Discover the strategies and best practices that will enable your business not just to survive, but thrive, in Southeast Asia's flourishing startup ecosystem.

A growing middle class, high smartphone penetration, young population, and disposable income make Southeast Asia an attractive destination for European companies. Discover the strategies and best practices that will enable your business not just to survive, but thrive, in Southeast Asia's flourishing startup ecosystem.

PRecious Communications is proud to have been a part of Asia Pacific Week Berlin 2019, held from the 13th to the 19th of May. Speaking in Berlin, Lars Voedisch, Founder and Managing Director of PRecious Communications, shared his insight into how European companies can take advantage of the ASEAN opportunity. Sharing the stage with Lars were representatives from Siemens AG, the Association of German Chambers of Industry and Commerce, SAP Labs Network & Fast Growth Market Strategy Group Clas Neumann, and many others.

The economic potential of Southeast Asia is undeniable. With a population of over 650 million and a combined GDP of US$2.557 trillion, the region represents a golden opportunity for business leaders who choose to expand there. Driven by six major economies; Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand, Vietnam and the Philippines, the region has averaged 6% annual growth in GDP over the last decade.

In his keynote presentation at Asia Pacific Week Berlin 2019, Lars spoke about the ASEAN opportunity and how startups from all over the world can capitalise on the region’s growth momentum. He highlighted that Southeast Asian Internet users are the most engaged in the world. Thai Internet users spend close to five hours on their phones each day, while Indonesian, Filipino and Malaysian users spend four hours online each day. These markets are also among the top ten most engaged users in the world.

Watch the SlideShare below to find out how to enter Southeast Asian marketplaces in 2019.

Here are some of the key takeaways from Lars Voedisch’s keynote presentation on Entering Southeast Asia Marketplaces:

  • Southeast Asia is a highly fragmented market. This means that any company that successfully executes a regional play will have strong defensibility against potential competitors.
  • To maximise the chances of success in Southeast Asia, startups must enter one market at a time. Each market is unique and it is important to start with the market which resonates well with its products or services.
  • Southeast Asia is a mobile-first market. Many Western market solutions that were designed for desktop use does not translate well on mobile. This is why it is important to follow the lead of companies who have to build native mobile solutions that have worked well in Southeast Asia.
  • Consider Singapore as your regional headquarters. Singapore ranks top in Asia for intellectual property protection and sustainability and second in the world for ease of doing business and having a competitive economy.
A growing middle class, high smartphone penetration, young population, and disposable income make Southeast Asia an attractive destination for European companies. Discover the strategies and best practices that will enable your business not just to survive, but thrive, in Southeast Asia's flourishing startup ecosystem.

A growing middle class, high smartphone penetration, young population, and disposable income make Southeast Asia an attractive destination for European companies. Discover the strategies and best practices that will enable your business not just to survive, but thrive, in Southeast Asia’s flourishing startup ecosystem.

In addition to his keynote speech, Lars spoke during a panel discussion on “What it means to become and stay Future-Proof – Insights and experiences,” alongside three other industry leaders. During the discussion, the panel discussed the challenges that corporates, SMEs and associations face while attempting to rework and transform their businesses for the digital era.

Watch: Panel on “What it means to become and stay Future-Proof”

The following industry experts shared the stage with Lars for a panel discussion on ‘What it means to become and stay Future-Proof – Insights and experiences’:

  • Ruo-Mei Chua, Chief Impact Officer at SUTW Impact Consulting
  • Gerrit Dumstorff, Head of HELLA Fast Forward Berlin, the German incubator of HELLA
  • Allan Chou, Director at the China Association of Technology Entrepreneurs Incubation

PRecious Communication’s dedicated startup practice – PRecious Sparks, is the regional leader in startup and investor public relations. The team has worked with over 150 young brands, disrupters and innovators, including 15 unicorns and has supported over S$10 billion in funding and M&A activities. To find out more about getting your international startup off to a flying start in Southeast Asia, get in touch with the PRecious Sparks team.

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