Mobile fuelling growth in Asia's startup scene

FinTech Innovation editors
05 Jan 2017

Mobile connectivity is fueling growth in Asia’s startup scene, a survey from Telenor Group shows.

The survey covered technology buffs to better understand key startup trends for 2017 and the challenges and views of entrepreneurs in Asia.

The survey was conducted over Facebook and LinkedIn with 215 respondents aged 15 to over 55 years old from Bangladesh, India, Malaysia, Myanmar, Pakistan, Singapore, Thailand and other Asian countries.

To gauge the interests and personalities of the survey respondents, each person was assigned the type of startup they were most likely to create in 2017, based on pattern of their responses. 38% of respondents were found to be the most likely to create an IoT startup in 2017, significantly outnumbering the number who would establish medtech startups (22%), on-demand startups (14%), enterprise startups (11%) and fintech startups (10%).

With a potential market of 34 billion devices expected to be connected to the internet by 2020, and nearly US$6 trillion to be spent over the next five years, it appears Asia’s entrepreneurs are well aware of the potential opportunities offered by the Internet of Things.

In addition to these 2017 startup trend insights, the survey findings also hint at what Asian entrepreneurs think it takes to succeed in the tough startup world. More than a third of respondents (36%) believe that cybersecurity and data privacy is their number one priority, and keeping their customers’ data safe and secure is the biggest challenge facing Asian startups.

One in 4 also admitted that the lack of business management skills and experience is another major obstacle, and having access to expert guidance would be an important growth factor. Another 16% say they are hampered by public policy frameworks and environments that are not conducive to startups, while 14% say that sustained funding across all stages of startup development would be important. Fewer than 1 in 10 were seen as were concerned with the challenge of expanding into other markets in the region.

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