On the Silicon Dragon Trail: Startup Asia Surfaces

Nguồn http://www.forbes.com/sites/rebeccafannin/2012/01/09/on-the-silicon-dragon-trail-startup-asia-surfaces/

Nguyen Tai said No to Google

The tech innovation trends I described in Silicon Dragon are fast evolving throughout Asia. Just as China copied the U.S. success models Facebook, Google and Amazon, India has copied China’s best, and so has Vietnam. In Ho Chi Minh City, social networking and gaming startup VNG wraps in both China’s leading tech companies, Tencent and Shanda.

Each market has come from different origins and progressed at its own pace. China’s base is in manufacturing while India built up a service economy around outsourcing. China has leapt ahead of India with startups that have excelled with IPOs on Wall Street and investment returns for Sand Hill Road. China too is moving to the next level by developing its own indigenous venture capital community, its own local currency funds and its own stock exchanges. China’s Silicon Dragon is becoming more and more distant from Silicon Valley, and could pass the U.S. in transforming research and development into commercially viable enterprises.

India, meanwhile, is charting its own course and still is years away from closing the tech gap with its large neighbor to the north. But India’s startups have the chance of going global more readily than do China’s emerging businesses, owing to the commonality of the English language and westernized concepts that filter in uncensored. One landmark alone – online travel site MakeMyTrip – could be a major door opener for more Indian startups to get on the stage.
The giant nations of India and China are leading the Startup Asia trends. But looking to the future, Vietnam and the country’s wired entrepreneurs most remind me of those I saw in the first generation of China ‘technopreneurs.’

Singapore is arguably the Asian tiger with the most advanced government-supported ecosystem for tech entrepreneurship. Taiwan and Hong Kong are getting dwarfed by Mainland China’s rapid ascent, but are leveraging their strengths as high-end tech production centers and financial trading hubs.

Sartup Asia traces the best practices of these nations’ entrepreneurs in the fastest-growing market sectors – mobile, cleantech, consumer commerce. Then, it delves into top strategies for winning market leadership, from taking a startup from zero to IPO, to disrupting the standard to going global. Startup Asia entrepreneurs are upbeat, a lively, successful group ho just say no to naysayers.
Yes, several of the tiger and dragon economies lack the many enefits of democracy, a free press, a built-out infrastructure, a tech uperhighway, a fair and just legal system, and top-rated educational systems – ll deep-rooted cultural foundations that have given the U.S. its universal tature and dominance universally. These pillars that have allowed U.S. tech
stars like Mark Zuckerberg to shine, and these underpinnings are hard to duplicate through government dictate or budgetary spending.

Perhaps this is one reason why no Chinese-born scientist has been awarded a Nobel Prize for research done in Mainland China, but several have won Nobels for work conducted in the West. It will take years before we will see a grass-roots entrepreneur in China or India who could shake up the establishment as much as Steve Jobs did.

Several of the cast of characters in Startup Asia are people you’ve probably never heard of from distant locales in China, India, Vietnam, Singapore and Taiwan.  But I predict you will be hearing more about this select group of up-and-coming entrepreneurs I’ve identified as the next generation, loudly and clearly, and soon.

To get insights on Startup Asia trends, join us January 17 in Palo Alto for our panel discussion led by top venture capitalists from India, China, and Vietnam. The program also features a chat with Nguyen Tai, the founder of Socbay. He’s the
gutsy entrepreneur who said no when Google came calling with an acquisition offer.

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