Technology entrepreneurship is a recent field which has its roots in the now established field of entrepreneurship. The aims is to study the specificities of entrepreneurial activities in technology-intensive environments. Thus the technoprenuer is different form the entrepreneurship because needs the understanding of the concept of technological opportunity seen as an anticipated profitable business so as to enable researchers and practitioners to develop procedural knowledge. Moreover, technopreneur seems to involve both high potential future profits and high uncertainty which means have been implemented the creation and early growth of high tech ventures.
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The lack of funding and support are sort being discuss in the technology-based industry, so an example Cradle Fund Sdn Bhd is an agency under the Ministry of Finance, Malaysia, has their own objective to support and provide an ecosystem that help the technology entrepreneur. Through their program to initiate as the provider of the early stage funding that innovate and aspiring the technology-based entrepreneur by encourage, support, stimulate and nurture the development of Malaysian entrepreneurship in high growth technology industries and the generation of ideas for an innovative knowledge-based society and economy.
We can see the success that have been achieved, for example, The Unified Alert Messaging System, which has achieved sales of above RM100,000 and is expanding its market overseas, is designed for ease of use by both small and medium sized businesses and corporations. According to Jeffrey Tan, the leader of the team that developed the Unified Alert Messaging System, an enterprise-level unified alert messaging system that grew from the WebNiche UAM (WebNiche Unified Alert Messaging) says the innovation is a natural extension of their business model. Tan says their first project provided unified communications services to SMEs, where they noticed a lot more potential if they could move up the value chain to offer hosted contact center solutions to corporations and public sectors. Those example should encourage the young technopreneur to more success and generate more idea to overlapping the advancement of the technology industry.
The call for the Malaysian society to be a highly-technocratic one is not a new idea. In his Vision 2020 working paper in 1991, former premier Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad highlighted the need to establish ‘a scientific and progressive society’ as the sixth challenge out of nine outlined in the national agenda. In Budget 2011 tabled by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak last year, the government would provide the ‘Entrepreneurship Enhancement Training Program to train 500 new technopreneurs and attract more investors.
Additionally, the Malaysian Technology Development Corporation (MTDC) would be provided with a startup fund amounting to RM100 million to furnish soft loans that allowed loan repayments only after companies had generated income. Obviously, the government wanted to see more technopreneurs running the small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in the country. “SMEs had to grow at about 8.5 per cent annually in order to contribute about 41 percent to Malaysia’s gross domestic product (GDP) by 2020,” stated SME Corporation Malaysia’s (SME Corp) chief executive officer Datuk Hafsah Hashim recently.
As futuristic as it may sound, a technopreneur is basically an entrepreneur with both business and technical training background or one who applies technology and innovation as the business core operating model. In Malaysia, this branch of enterprise is usually represented by ICT and multimedia SMEs, either at seed level or already over the startup stage. According to Bank Negara Malaysia, a general definition of an SME refers to an enterprise with shareholders’ funds of less than RM10 million. On the other hand, SME Corp stated that an enterprise that generated an annual sales turnover not exceeding RM25 million and with full time employees not exceeding 150 people was considered an SME. “Its contribution to the country’s economy remains significant,” stated SME Corp’s Hafsah.
The Technopreneurs Association of Malaysia “TeAM” has been formed by a group of Malaysian Technopreneurs to further the interests of Technopreneurs and to assist in the development of the technology based industry in Malaysia.
Membership to TeAM is open to all individuals related to technology industry in Malaysia. Membership to TeAM is divided into 3 types namely, Member, Honorary Member and Student Member. Since its founding, TeAM’s efforts in accelerating the adoption, growth and development of the ICT industry in Malaysia has resulted in a number of successful key initiatives such as the Cradle Investment Programme (CIP), Excite the Entrepreneur Programme, TeAM Clinic, Malayisan ICT Trade Directory (with Matrade), MSC Global Technopreneur Forum 2004 (with MDeC formerly known as MDC) among others.At the same time, TeAM takes an active role in fostering ICT development efforts in support of initiatives by the Government of Malaysia to make Malaysia a major ICT and Biotechnology player in the region. TeAM annually participates in the Malaysian Government’s annual budget dialogue and proposed ideas and initiatives to enhance the technopreneur sector in the country.
IMPACT AND INFLUENCES
Malaysian technopreneurs are likely to face an uphill climb growing their businesses this year due to several ongoing challenges, say industry observers.
The lack of seed-stage funding, slowdown in global economy, shortage of innovative ideas and absence of relevant skillsets, will hinder the country’s tech entrepreneurs’ expansion plans this year. Cradle Fund CEO Nazrin Hassan said there is still a gap, commonly known as “go-to- market” funding, which exists for companies between the pre-seed and seed stage of commercialization. Established in 2003 by the Malaysian government under the auspices of the Ministry of Finance, Cradle provides pre-seed funding and advice to Malaysian technopreneurs. “Deepening and expanding market access for local technopreneurs to secure deals and contracts still remain a major challenge, be it locally or overseas,” said Nazrin, who is also the former president of the Technopreneur Association of Malaysia (TeAM). He noted that about 80 percent of local technopreneurs are at the early stage of development, but many of them cannot grow further due to the lack of funds.
“There is a gap that exists between the pre-seed and seed stage of funding,” he explained. “Pre-seed funds only help technopreneurs to develop their ideas, but good ideas will need a bridge to get to the next level.” Nazrin said.
According to Michael Ta, CEO of the FSBM Group’s multimedia arm, technopreneurship in Malaysia is often about “positioning the right people, in the right places” to secure a project. “This is why many local technopreneurs only do well in Malaysia but not when they are pitted against the other players in the world arena,” Ta told ZDNet Asia in an e-mail interview. The Malaysian IT services company has made inroads in China with Java- based mobile applications.
According to Deputy Minister of International Trade and Industry (MITI), “The Malaysian government has consistently urged the SMEs and the industries to innovate and utilize technology and ICT solutions to remains competitive as a way of charting a new path out of the present global economic turmoil”. He also added that ICT industry is the main pillars of the Malaysian economy and the New Economic Model (NEM). He also stressed that the development of the local entrepreneur were the crucial to position Malaysia as a developed status nation by 2020. He also mention that the SME should adopt the abundance enterprise software as a management tools, content and data delivery mechanism to increase their efficiency and effectiveness.
Technology industry is still in early stage in Malaysia and still in developing. The government should give huge essential toward the technology industrial because it can generate tremendous profit and growth of economic. Our product are still in the in research and try to penetrate the market as well try to fit in the technology advancement.
According to this issue Malaysia still lack knowledge and funding compare to Japan and Korea that mostly have full facilities and high technology. Multimedia Development Corporation (MDeC), the custodian of the Multimedia Super Corridor Malaysia (MSC Malaysia) initiative, launched the ‘Icon2 – Second MSC Malaysia Integrated Content Development Program’, the sequel of the first content development program. Similarly to its predecessor, Icon2 would furnish local developers with the skills and means including the startup capital to create content-based products. The program was also initiated to provide a platform for the younger generation to play an active role in the country’s transformation into a fully-digital economy, following the target outlined in the Economic Transformation Program (ETP).
Furthermore, Malaysia still lack of training and expertise in the development of the technology. Lack of conventional training and support also become barrier to development of industrial-based technology, there for the youth generation should have early exposure regards technology as we can generate more technpreneurs in the future that can globalize the Malaysian towards technology.
Last but not least, developing THE Technopreneur Center (TEC) to play the role of an information Center that spreads information about technopreneur development and commercializing technology. TEC will create a synergy with activities that is being organized by other units in the university and any place of study.
First of all, the technopreneur flagship should have their own representative on their committees entrepreneur that have involve in the technology industry. To make sure this can encourage more technopreneur show their interest efficiently represented and the more representative should be extended in the flagship application. Therefore the MSC should success to ensure that broadband access are available nationwide, which means allow ICT companies enjoy pioneer status and tax incentives.
Next, Malaysia need showcase locally breed technopreneur winner. Aside from the publicity, Malaysia should highlight the viable ICT business environment to foreign investors. By these the government should introduce sponsored programmes on the development that aims and sharpen the new technopreneur business skills, this will facilitate buyers to sources for expertise among technopreneur. The government also need playing field by channeling the bidding of some government contracts to certain classes of startup companies while excluding establish companies, this will show the government act as catalyst.
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Moreover, technopreneur need to be more resourceful and exhaust all available sources of fund before seeking institutional funds. Friends and families intend to invest in the early stages. There is agency that help the technopreneur to understand ICT and promote funds to the industries, such as TeAM or any others government agencies. They also need to create their own forum to match international financiers with Malaysian ICT companies. By establishing a virtual web forum to aggregate and promote Malaysian business can be interest the investor that can cause an impact. They also should create an one stop agency that assist technopreneur to apply for various grants and other government aids.
Furthermore, technopreneur should work together with existing development authorities in traditional sectors such as Malaysian External Trade Development Corporation (MATRADE) and Malaysian embassies abroad to collectivity market local ICT companies. As ICT is enabling technology that transcends various industries to develop marketing channels into Malaysia. With this establish Malaysian sponsored exhibition booths at major international trade fairs where local technopreneurs can participate more affordably by sharing costs. As current government sponsored exhibits are not well publicized, that ensure these initiatives are communicates down all entrepreneurs
Lastly, government should grants assist Malaysian companies to create the necessary software support infrastructure in foreign markets that may be shared with others Malaysian companies in pooled basis. For start, regional markets that are closer to Malaysia should be targeted. With the foreign competitor have better resources and marketing tools, local entrepreneur need to find a place that takes advantages of local expertise and product that have local comparative advantages. By all these we can develop more technopreneur in technology-based industry.
Technology-based industry has reached all corners of the world. There are a lot achievement and success have been made appeals to emotions and drive decisions. With numerous programmes set up by the government to develop ideas into products, all parties should team up to take these ideas to next stage of full commercialization. On the support provider’s side, the government and its respective agencies should promote these programmes more aggressively. On the recipients’ side, they should explore more which meant they must ask around, seek around and act. Prime Minister Najib summed it quite poignantly during the launch of the 23rd MSC Malaysia Implementation Council Meeting in October. “Do we want to just be achieving what is expected; or do we want to springboard ahead of the pack?”. Thus, government support is needed necessary, as the local technopreneurs are definitely not in the same league as other global technology-bases industry entrepreneurs.
Mohd Abdullah Jusoh, Sultan Idris Education University, Malaysia Hazianti Abdul Halim, Sultan Idris Education University, Malaysia :
Role of Technopreneurs in Malaysian Economic
Abdul talib bon :
NEW MODEL AND CONCEPT FOR TECHNOPRENEURSHIP STUDIES IN UNIVERSITY THROUGH EXCELLENCE CENTER
Handbook of Research on Techno-Entrepreneurship :
Edwin Yapp, ZDNet Asia. Malaysian technopreneurs are likely to face an uphill climb growing their businesses this year due to several ongoing challenges, say industry observers.
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