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Nurturing global entrepreneurship in youths

16 January 2012

(From left) Mr Foo, Minister Teo, Mr Teo and Mr Low during the panel discussion

The opportunities for entrepreneurs and businesses might not be in saturated markets like Singapore but instead lie in emerging markets. To venture into such markets, it is always good for entrepreneurs to first spend time overseas. So said Mr Teo Ser Luck, Minister of State for Trade and Industry and Mayor for North East District at a panel session on the global prospects for local start-ups at iConnect 2012, which kicked off on 13 January.

Themed "Connecting Global Youths, Inspiring Future Entrepreneurs", iConnect 2012 is organised by the International Student Alliance for Global Entrepreneurship and BizAsia, two global projects under NUS Entrepreneurship Society (NES). The week-long conference brings together some 150 student delegates from Singapore and foreign universities who will be exchanging ideas on global entrepreneurship.

Other speakers at the panel discussion included CEO of International Enterprise Singapore Mr Teo Eng Cheong, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Sakae Holdings Ltd Mr Douglas Foo, and Home-Fix DIY Pte Ltd Managing Director Mr Low Cheong Kee, who all shared about their lessons learnt from going global.

Mr Zhao Dexin, NES President, talked about the impact of ties made during the inaugural iConnect last year. He cited the success story of a Singaporean teammate who partnered with a delegate from Chile to form a software engineering company. Within a month of business, the team made their first deal.

BizAsia Director Ms Yang Minhui, a second-year engineering student at NUS, hopes that delegates will be able to experience Singapore and learn about Asia's entrepreneurship culture at iConnect 2012. Participants from Russia, China and Taiwan will gain insights into the challenges and prospects of entrepreneurship in Asia, with particular focus on Singapore. Visits to companies such as NEWater, MHC Asia and Qian Hu Corporation will allow delegates to see how businesses are run. The students will also learn from industry leaders, start-up entrepreneurs and academics in business, engineering and law through networking sessions.