The Rise of Tech Startups in Vietnam's 'Silicon Valley'

The Rise of Tech Startups in Vietnam's 'Silicon Valley'

Over the past few years, thousands of young Vietnamese entrepreneurs have come to the city to start their own company - whether it is developing innovative apps, mobile games, e-commerce or other tech solutions.

This emergence was quickly recognized by Vietnam's communist-led government. With an initiative titled 'Vietnam Silicon Valley,' it is allocating resources to create an environment in which startups can grow easily.

Last year, the government said it would offer legal and financial support to 2,600 startups over the next 10 years.


Combining Youth, Resources and Innovation 

Bobby Liu of the Topica Founder Institute, a startup accelerator program, said that Vietnamese are good entrepreneurs, but that's not the only reason why Ho Chi Minh City is on the rise as a startup hub.

Mimosatek's app, one of Vietnam's startups, helps Vietnamese farmers use resources more efficiently. Image: DW
Mimosatek's app, one of Vietnam's startups, helps Vietnamese farmers use resources more efficiently. Image: DW


"Fifty percent of the population is below 35 years old and many of them have studied abroad," Liu told DW, adding that Vietnam was also a base for computer technology outsourced by international companies.

"Combine that with a forward-thinking mindset along with low expenses for living," he said. 

And the Vietnamese government is hoping that more people will start their own company. Deputy Prime Minister Vuong Dinh Hue announced last year that Vietnam should have 1 million businesses by 2020, up from the current 500,000.

But becoming successful isn't easy. An estimated 90 percent of startups fail, often due to a lack of funding.

Vietnam's Ticketbox. Image: DealStreetAsia
Vietnam's Ticketbox. Image: DealStreetAsia


Growing Potential for Success

One of the country's success stories is Ticketbox, developed by 33-year old Tuan Anh Tran. In 2013, he started the online platform with which people can easily buy tickets for concerts and other events.

According to Tran, in the first nine months, Ticketbox grew 24 times its original size. The company recently expanded to Singapore and Thailand.

"I never expected to be the owner of a company that is active in three different countries," Tran told DW. "All I wanted is to build something that would help Vietnam."

Experts say that Vietnam is full of opportunities for entrepreneurs. Like many economies in Southeast Asia, Vietnam is experiencing very positive growth and the World Bank estimates that GDP will grow 6.5 percent in 2017.


Source : DW

Indah Gilang Pusparani

Indah is a researcher at Badan Perencanaan Pembangunan Penelitian dan Pengembangan Daerah Kota Cirebon (Regional Development Planning and Research Agency of Cirebon Municipality). She covers More international relations, tourism, and startups in Southeast Asia region and beyond. Indah graduated from MSc Development Administration and Planning from University College London, United Kingdom in 2015. She finished bachelor degree from International Relations from University of Indonesia in 2014, with two exchange programs in Political Science at National University of Singapore and New Media in Journalism at Ball State University, USA. She was awarded Diplomacy Award at Harvard World Model United Nations and named as Indonesian Gifted Researcher by Australian National University. She is Researcher at Regional Planning Board in Cirebon, West Java. She previously worked as Editor in Bening Communication, the Commonwealth Parliament Association UK, and diplomacy consulting firm Best Delegate LLC in USA. Less
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