SME Cluster Development Workshop

Jagat Shah at SME Cluster Development in Brunei

28 October 2009 – Several government agencies, organizations, banks and SME’s attended a workshop on SME Cluster Development at the Rizqun Hotel. The Workshop lasted the whole day. Among the topics that were discussed were:

  • The activities the whole day
  • The meaning of Cluster Development
  • Case studies of Cluster Development
  • How Brunei can take advantage of cluster development
  • Presentation/Discussions on Sectors to Pursue Cluster Development
  • Creating a a workgroup to spearhead cluster development in Brunei.

I found the workshop to be eye opening in the sense that all the stakeholder – SME’s, Government Departments, Banks, Business Development Services and Consultants could do more to help each other to improve brunei’s economy as well as pursuing the diversification from our oil economy. Continue reading

Judging the National Youth Development Centre

I was asked to be one of 5 judges to judge some students computer projects at the National Youth Development Centre (AKA Pusat Pembangunan Belia AKA PPB). The students here are often low achievers that couldn’t get into vocational or technical schools. Although some have used it as a ramp to get there.

The judges included a teacher from science college, an IT officer in fire department, 2 officers from the Ministry of Culture, Youth and Sports, and an entrepreneur in the IT industry (that would be me 🙂 ).

I’d have to say their projects were quite impressive. The teachers informed me that this is the students’ final project which they themselves thought up themselves, which of course the teachers just supervise. There were about 15 groups with 3 persons per group.

The projects were IT based, which was tied in with whatever courses they were doing at PPB. I would love to describe some of the Projects in detail, but I feel uncomfortable sharing them without the students permission. Additionally, although the projects were mostly for PPB, But I feel that some of them may have a business viability. If any of the students are reading this, you can share your project description in the comments. Alternatively, you can contact me to assist you in monetizing your projects 🙂

I took some photos while I was judging, mostly during the boring parts. I paid attention mostly during the demonstrations.

I’d say that these students have a bright future as IT employees or as IT entrepreneurs.


PS I’m not in the Picture 😦 someone had to take it.

Using Color in Advertising Increases the Chances of a Purchase.

In my opinion, the cheapest and yet the most effective method to market yourself is by using Fliers or Brochures. But most people and businesses tend to use photocopied leaflets or even brochures. I guess its cheaper then printing. Now I’ve found this article on using colors in office documents and one line shouted out to me.

“…according to the Psychology magazine study, color increases the likelihood people will purchase a product or service by 85%.” from an article entitled Is Full-Color the New Standard for Office Documents? | The DocuMentor |

Now if that’s true, I might have to reconsider my marketing techniques. Printing color is costly compared to photocopying. I guess my best choice is to Print Brochures in color, but use colored paper for leaflets. I wonder if that counts…

National Technology Forum 2009


15-October 2009 – This year’s the national technology forum was held again at the Empire Hotel with the them Innovation Transforming Enterprises. I arrived their right before lunch, but I think I still benefited. Among the many topics that were discussed by their respective experts were:

  • and how it ran a budget motel and its business model with the help of technology in marketing and management. I like the part where the speaker mentioned that the hotel is helping people to save cost, and therefore the hotel saves cost and so increases profit.
  • Google discussing its support for open source through the Google App Engine. The speaker was very witty and funny, I was interested to find out that google has a lot of projects in the works.
  • Integrating Open source and existing Database systems using Pentaho, I was really sleepy in this one, the speaker was japanese and didn’t speak english very well.
  • Security and adoption aspects of open source. This was a recurring question in the Q and A session.
  • How Private-Public-Partnerships (PPP) assists in the development of Singapore and how it has benefited its citizens.
  • Some of the things that the Brunei Government is planning and has recently achieved in the quest for e-governance.
  • In the end, the it was emphasized that in Business (or I guess in any organization) what is important is the People and not just the technology.

Overall I believe that the event was very beneficial to all those who attended, especially those who did the whole day. I am looking forward to see what is planned for the next National Technology Forum on 28 november 2009 next year. For more information, you could go to


ASEAN-Korea Centre Visit to EDC/NAC


13 Oktober 2009 – 2 Koreans visited the Entrepreneurial Development Centre (EDC) in Kampong Sinaut, Tutong . Ki Bong MOON from ASEAN-Korea Centre and Michael Shin from CJ Freshway came to Brunei and were brought around to see Small Medium Entreprises (SMEs) operating in Brunei.

They were lead by Rozaimee Abdullah from the Department of Economics Cooperation of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade. One of the SME’s that were visited was Warisan Ummi a participant in the incubator program under the Entrepreneurial Development Centre (EDC) and the National Accrediation and Standards Centre.(NSC)

One of the objectives of the visit was to see how Brunei SME’s can work together with the ASEAN-Korean to promote their products there. Warisan Ummi demonstrated how their snacks were made from start to end.

How people make choices

I’ve been checking TEDtalks a lot recently. This one surprised me. Thinking how to use this in promoting my products and services. Check it out, Dan Ariely asks, Are we in control of our own decisions?

LiveWIRE BI Workshop 12-13 October 2009

LiveWIRE Sdn Bhd concluded another 2 day – Bright Ideas Workshop held at the MTSSR Lecture Hall. The participants were students and staff of the Youth Development Centre or Pusat Pembangunan Belia (PBB). The speaker – Steven Song covered topics such as:

  • Thinking Outside the Box
  • The truth about money
  • Ideas on starting a business
  • You don’t need a lot of capital to start a business
  • Introduction to simple financial management of a business
  • The secret to wealth
  • Thinking above the line (people who took BI should know this 🙂 )
  • Succeeding in Business.
  • Motor X game – a simulation exercise on managing a business. (i love this one)

The next course would be Be a Succesful Owner and Manager (BSOM) Workshop. This workshop will have invited speakers from business.

For more information go to LiveWIRE website at

Participants who want to see their pics from the event should go to my facebook page and tag themselves

These are low quality pics. If you want to have a full screen/desktop wallpaper/1024×768 sized picture. I’ll be asking for compensation. e-mail me at bobbyofbrunei(at)yahoo(dot)com. (brackets are to avoid spammers).