Startup Up­starts

Meet the am­bi­tious ex­pats who forged their own paths in the Malaysian startup scene

Expatriate Lifestyle - - Contents - In­ter­view by Ta­nia Jay­ati­laka and Caramella Scarpa Photo by Brian Fang (M8 Stu­dio) Art Di­rec­tion Nor Hamimah Ab­dul­lah Make Up & Hair­style Scott Aziz

Com­merce evolves to keep up with de­mand, re­tain mar­ket share and keep con­sumers spend­ing. The era of the startup be­gan in the early 2000s and has since been used to de­scribe any­thing from mas­sive tech com­pa­nies (aptly known as uni­corns if they’re worth USD1 bil­lion or more), to lit­tle hip­ster out­fits which are like the 21st cen­tury’s ver­sion of the tor­tured artist – look­ing for in­vest­ment, tal­ented and ballsy. There are so many def­i­ni­tions for what a star tup is but one of the most ap­pro­pri­ate is a busi­ness that is tech­no­log­i­cally in­clined with great po­ten­tial for growth; but with dis­tinc­tive chal­lenges in­clud­ing get­ting in­vestors will­ing to take a risk. A glar­ing dif­fer­ence be­tween an old-school com­pany and a startup is the peo­ple that run and work for the lat­ter. There’s en­thu­si­asm bor­der­ing on ex­u­ber­ance, tenac­ity and cre­ativ­ity; usu­ally aged be­tween their mid-twen­ties and 40.

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