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Economic Sector

Last updated: Monday, September 25, 2017

 

Entire Nation with Start-up Movement

Posted: Monday, September 11, 2017


Never before has starting a business become such a movement, and received such attention and support from the government, ministries, localities, organisations and investment funds, in the country and in the world, as now.

Some major cities in Vietnam have taken initial steps to support the national start-up movement. In Hanoi, the “Hanoi Information Technology Innovation Incubator in the five years from 2016 to 2020” project with the aim of promoting business start-ups, initiatives and innovations of individuals and organisations was approved. The estimated budget for establishment and operation of the incubator is about VND7 billion.

The incubator aims to support 12 start-up businesses in the first three years and have 70 per cent of success, which is able to introduce new high-tech applications and products.

In addition to establishing a general start-up support centre, Hanoi will also study forming venture funds where the city will finance partially. Hanoi is keen to create a strong entrepreneurial spirit and set a goal of becoming a national start-up centre.

To support the development of the start-up business community, Ho Chi Minh City is striving to establish 100 intermediary units by 2020 (based on Circular 16 of the Ministry of Science and Technology) to assist start-up businesses to complete records. The city targets to help 2,000 start-up projects by 2020. Up to now, the largest city in Vietnam has received 200 start-up projects registering support. Accordingly, it will focus on helping them fulfil business ideas, models and services and test production.

The municipal government has also introduced support regulations on innovative start-ups. Accordingly, a start-up support will be financed at most VND2 billion provided that they are engaged in four key industries (mechanics, electronics - information technology, chemical - plastic – rubber, and food processing), supporting industries and services (finance - banking - insurance, trade, tourism, transport, port and warehousing, post and telecommunications - communications, real estate, consulting, science - technology, health - education - training).

Da Nang City, the fastest-growing city in Vietnam, has also issued a programme on start-up ecosystem development through the Da Nang Start-up Ecosystem Development Project to 2020, with a vision to 2030. In 2016, it set up a business incubator. The city has organised many business start-up activities like online start-up courses for the community, intensive pitching courses, foreign language courses, legal guidance information, and start-up exchange events with popular entrepreneurs such as Nguyen Manh Dung (Chief Representative of CyberAgent Ventures Vietnam & Thailand), Nguyen Khanh Trinh (founder of CleverAds), Doan Ky Thanh (owner of Hanoi Creative City), Do Hoai Nam (CEO of SeeSpace), and Le Huynh Kim Ngan (founder of Twenty.vn and Action.vn).

Quang Nam, one of central developing provinces, has launched Quang Nam Start-up Club in Hoi An City. The club aims to promote and develop a start-up ecosystem in Quang Nam province, concentrating on northern districts of Quang Nam and Hoi An City, and integrate investment resources to accelerate business start-up processes.

Start-ups are not only supported by provinces/cities, but also by organisations. In March, the Central Youth Union of Vietnam launched the Supporting Centre for Youth’s Start-up to consult, support and connect ideas of young entrepreneurs.

The Vietnam-Finland Innovation Partnership Programme - Phase 2 (IPP2) announced five fast-growing start-ups and two innovation and start-up development projects. Each project will be granted EUR100,000 in the second stage. In addition, 10 new projects of innovative and start-up ecosystem development received initial funding from IPP2 in 2016.

In order to further develop innovation and start-up ecosystems in Vietnam, IPP2 continues to provide upgraded funds for innovative projects selected for IPP2 support in 2015 and finance new innovation and start-up ecosystem development projects in 2016. This showed IPP2’s strong commitments and messages of actively improving the enabling environment for innovation and start-up in Vietnam, promoting the formation and development of potential innovative business forces to reach the international market.

Lotte Group also announced it is financing US$1 million to Vietnam's start-up ecosystem in five years and considering integrating outstanding start-up products into the Lotte distribution network in Vietnam.

There are also big start-up investment deals. For example, Mekong Capital invested US$10 million in F88 (pawn shop chain); Capricorn poured US$9.1 million into GotIt! (educational application); Standard Chartered and Goldman Sachs funded US$28 million to MoMo (e-wallet). Education start-up projects have expanded strongly. In 2016 alone, they received US$20 million with six deals.

Although Vietnam's start-up movement is just blossoming and not yet bearing fruit, the potential is huge. Active support programmes from the Government, localities and organisations are expected to support business start-ups to further succeed and develop in the future.

Quynh Chi








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