Globalisation of Local Tech Icons

29 Nov 2016

WITH a stream of global uncertainties coming into play, it is inevitably tough for companies here to have foreign market access and grow market share.

Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation’s (MDEC) Global Acceleration and Innovation Network (GAIN) programme may be the much needed impetus in times such as this, as it is designed to catalyse Malaysian tech companies that have the potential to be global tech icons.

It is estimated that while about 88% of Malaysian information technology (IT) firms reported an average yearly revenue of RM1.4mil, these companies have not broken the start-up status ceiling. There are many reasons for this including lack of appetite for regional expansion, access to scale-up capital and most importantly, the lack of visibility to the global markets.

As Malaysia is located at the heart of Asean, making it an ideal gateway to access the region’s population base of 600 million and a collective gross domestic product of US$2 trillion (RM8.9 trillion), it makes sense for tech firms to further extend their reach for better growth prospects.

We spoke to three local tech companies that are fast expanding in this region – S5 Systems, AIMS Group of Companies and Piktochart. These firms not only have visionary leaders but own outstanding tech potential and encouraging revenue and growth results via innovative business models and regional expansion plans.

S5 Systems

FOUNDED in 2006 by group chief executive officer Datuk Seri Johann Young, S5 Systems is a software company providing solutions that span across securing credentials and law enforcement, customs, immigration and border protection, foreign worker management, enterprise security and asset management, among others.

The national security solutions provider is also known for its patented and award-winning forensic level (Level 3 Security) security solutions that enables governments and companies manage identities and documents of individuals via enforcement technologies operated securely over distributed networks and workforces.

S5 Systems has developed and patented its homegrown security technologies and this is currently used in projects here and abroad. S5 Systems has also attained patents from the United States, Africa, Asia and Australia.

Johann said S5 had been very fortunate to have gotten plenty of Government support in terms of software testing and certification, to name a few.

“This should give us a distinct and wider market penetration as well as the government-to-government validation that is beneficial in securing new contracts in new markets.

“Another facet of Government support comes in the form of Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation’s (MDEC) Global Acceleration and Innovation Network (GAIN) programme, where we believe is bringing great value in the assistance in technology acquisition and connecting tech companies to viable foreign firms that have synergies and are interested to collaborate technologically or commercially,” noted Johann, adding that this had a two-fold effect of expediting the process of breaking into new markets.

Johann expects growth opportunities in 2017 and beyond and this would be mainly supported by data on international tourist arrivals and migrant volumes.

He said international tourist arrivals were up 4.4% to 1.184 billion in 2015 from 1.134 billion in 2014, and this was estimated to reach 1.8 billion by 2030.

Meanwhile, international migrant volumes have been growing rapidly worldwide from 172.7 million in 2005 to 243.7 million in 2015.

“The demand for solutions and systems in the national security space will continue to grow locally and abroad as governments and authorities face challenges in population growth.

“The current challenges faced in the global economy may contribute to the escalating demand and government spending in the national security space as well,” he said, adding that this left some governments little choice but to continue to invest in new technology and projects to address the challenges ahead.







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