Startups urged to unlock value of Malaysia Digital Hubs with launch of special deal

  • MDEC launches affordable ‘Digital Hub Pass’ for entrepreneurs to use coworking spaces
  • Malaysia Digital Hubs will take aspiring startups to next level, become regional players

Startups urged to unlock value of Malaysia Digital Hubs with launch of special deal

In conjunction with the #Saya Digital Month, the Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC) has partnered with Malaysia Digital Hub operators to address their daily business operation challenges by offering affected startups and entrepreneurs with an affordable daily ‘Digital Hub Pass,’ an ideal package to grow their businesses during post-COVID-19.

Malaysia Digital Hubs is an extension of the MSC Malaysia Cybercentre that was created for startups and digitally-powered businesses. It is specifically designed as hotbeds for innovation, digital coworking spaces and incubators using digital technologies in their respective fields of specialisation.

The Covid-19 pandemic has affected most startups, especially in continuing their business operations as they are faced with difficulties such as paying high rental costs and long-term contract durations. These startups are looking at flexible and cost-effective options, which MDEC believes that incubators and coworking spaces like Malaysia Digital Hubs can assist with.

Through these facilities, startups can access vital assistance such a mentorship, funding opportunities, accelerator programmes, corporate partnership and other business and digital development programmes.

The ‘Digital Hub Pass’ offers two packages, from as low as RM10 (per day) or RM40 (per week-5-day pass) for entrepreneurs to start their operations at the participating Malaysia Digital Hubs.

According to Gopi Ganesalingam, vice president of MDEC’s Global Growth Acceleration (GGA) division, tech startups are undeniably the key drivers of digital transformation in the country.

“To recapitulate MDEC’s #Saya Digital campaign, going digital is no longer a corporate mantra but part of our daily lifestyle, especially from contactless payment transactions, to e-learning in schools, digital ID at dwellings and remote working solutions, where all these have become instrumental in transforming our societies and social norms,” says Gopi.

Looking at these vast opportunities, he stresses that MDEC is steadfast in its support of the entrepreneurial ecosystem by digitally-empowering Malaysian businesses, while supporting the country’s economic recovery. “We are delighted to partner with the Malaysia Digital Hubs operators to offer this ‘Digital Hub Pass’ which will certainly help them scale, build business acumen and innovation skills,” Gopi explained.

In total, there are seven certified ‘Malaysian Digital Hubs’ supporting over 400 startups. The Malaysia Digital Hubs are also in partnership with other accelerators and tech-based multinational companies (MNCs) like Google, Amazon and Microsoft to build talent pool and provide funding opportunities (through partners like Cradle Fund, Gobi Partners, community engagements, events, mentorship, training, hackathons and various accelerator programmes.

The Malaysia Digital Hub is part of MDEC’s initiative to accelerate Malaysia’s digital economy growth, while ensuring socio-economic inclusivity by focusing on three key pillars: Digitally-skilled Malaysians, Digitally-powered businesses, and Digital investments.

At the moment, among the ‘Malaysia Digital Hubs’ that are supporting the ‘Digital Hub Pass’ initiative include Common Ground, CO., Dojo KL, UnionSPACE and WORQ located in the Klang Valley area.

Tech entrepreneurs, who are not existing tenants of the participating coworking spaces can obtain the Digital Hub Pass directly from the selected Malaysia Digital Hubs, starting today until 31 August 2020. More information on the Digital Hub pass may be obtained here.

To encourage more startups to participate, there are more than 13 accelerators and coworking spaces in the pipeline, and soon will be participating with the Malaysia Digital Hubs to offer the Digital Hub Pass.

The Malaysia Digital Hubs provide rich ecosystem components, which include high-speed broadband and various soft infra offerings.

This initiative also coincides with the recent acknowledgment of Kuala Lumpur being ranked as the 11th emerging startup ecosystem in the Global Start-up Ecosystem Report 2020 (GSER2020) by Start-up Genome. The report positioned Kuala Lumpur as an ideal location for startups, citing low costs; the high quality of living and availability of talent; providing fast-tracked visas; and robust government support which are some of the prime reasons for entrepreneurs to either start or move their businesses to Malaysia.

Kuala Lumpur’s startup ecosystem is valued at US$15 billion (versus global average of US$10.5 billion) and is ranked as the 4th emerging ecosystem in the Asia Pacific. The overall scores achieved by the country provides compelling evidence that the country is taking the digital leap to attract digital investments and raise the profile to become the Heart of Digital ASEAN.

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