5 key trends that marked the Asian startup

Posted by Hicks Crawford on November 6th, 2018

With 55% of the world’s population, Asia has amazing potential for business growth. In recent years, startups and small companies are trying to fill some of this space with an array of business propositions, with many among them achieving global prominence – for example, Chinese portal Alibaba has grown to be the largest online marketplace in the world with more than 50,000 employees. The region as a whole is approaching maturity, with many parts of the continent that were previously considered marginal advancing by leaps and bounds.

Here are some of the major trends that most analysts see as dominant this year:

China and India still leading the way

Asia is increasingly catching up with Europe and North America when it comes to favorable conditions for starting a business and attracting investment, with Beijing ranked as fourth most startup-friendly urban area in the world, right behind Silicon Valley, New York and London. Meanwhile, India remains well positioned to expand its already robust technology sector by stimulating formation of startups, thanks in large part to plentiful private equity available. The pace of growth in two leading countries may be slowing down, but they still represent the best Asian locations to start a new company.

Growth in the South-East

While Chinese and Indian market remain the most attractive due to enormous size, an increasing number of success stories is coming from smaller countries, particularly from South-East Asia. Startup scene in Singapore and Hong Kong is blossoming, and is well on the way to make up for a shaky year in 2016. Most importantly, local funding sources are now better suited to support an independent IPO scene, acting as strong motivation for tech companies in the region.

Improvement of IT infrastructure

One reason why Asian entrepreneurs have a harder time entering the social network business with "pretend play"  scene than their European or American counterparts is low internet coverage, with only 44% of Asian residents having access to the web. Despite this obstacle, educational resources are becoming more widely accessible, empowering a broad spectrum of individuals to enter the technology sector or set up internet-based businesses aimed at other industries. As Asian countries continue to invest in IT infrastructure, this trend can be expected to accelerate.

Arrival of the competition

Foreign companies are aware of the untapped potential of Asian markets, and are keenly looking for a way to establish a foothold here. During this year, US-based startups could be expected to aggressively target Asian customers in a number of areas. For example, companies from the United States cover 63% of the insurance tech market, while China and India cover just 4% and 5% respectively. In response, Chinese startup Zhong An has already attracted 8 billion in investments and will resist the foreign firms tenaciously. It will be interesting to see how local industries fare when exposed to increased competition in the coming years.

Professionalization and preparation

Asian entrepreneurs are increasingly aware of the need to ‘play by the rules’ if they want to succeed. Small companies are hiring experienced consultants and business plan writers before they even launch their products. It makes sense to pay for business plans writers cost in order to increase the chances of attracting investments within the first 12 – 24 months after the company is founded.


Hicks Crawford

About the Author

Hicks Crawford
Joined: September 22nd, 2017
Articles Posted: 6

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