Ho Chi Minh City a rising startup hub: Japanese media hinh anh 1At Saigon Hi-tech Park (Source: VNA)
Ho Chi Minh City (VNA) – A Japanese newspaper has heralded Ho Chi Minh City as a “Silicon Valley of Asia” thanks to its upgraded infrastructure and growing financial areas. 

Nikkei Asian Review published the article on October 24.

The city built an incubator for startups in Saigon Hi-tech Park, in which giants like Intel and Samsung are based. It is also known as a cradle of startups with more than 800 operating ones. 

Over the past two years, the city has spent 90 million USD on start-ups and innovation programmes, formed partnerships with more than 20 foreign partners and has a total of 24 incubators and 12 startup spaces, leading to the launch of more than 760 start-ups. 

Ho Chi Minh City is also working to build creative urban areas in Districts 2,9 and Thu Duc. They are expected to be equipped with the most technological advances, modern tertiary education and become the best urban areas in the city. 

Foreign founders have chosen the city to start their own companies, many of them focusing on blockchain and digital currencies. 

Stewie Zhu, founder of DCC, a distributed credit provider on the blockchain, expressed his belief that Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City would become two of the world’s blockchain hubs. 

He said he is impressed by investors’ enthusiasm in blockchain. 

To become the next Silicon Valley of Asia, Ho Chi Minh City must overcome other heavyweight rivals such as Singapore, Jakarta (Indonesia), Bangkok (Thailand) and Penang (Malaysia). 

One of the crucial issues facing startups is capital access. Vietnam is fine-tuning policies in this regard while Singapore, Indonesia and Malaysia have offered better incentives, making it easier for startups to pool capital and enjoy higher valuations. 

Changes in culture and education are also needed to create a favourable startup scene, given that easy capital access in the US’s Stanford and Berkeley universities has made Silicon Valley attractive to startups worldwide. 

According to experts, Ho Chi Minh City needs to choose suitable locations for creative urban areas, better understand investors’ needs and deal with traffic congestion.-VNA