VSAPAC Dialogue at EDC

25th June 2010, Friday – A few selected entrepreneurs and incubatees under the incubator program of the Entrerpreneurial Development Centre (EDC) were invited for a followup of discussions on how SME Development could be improved.

The facilitators were consultants from Vector Scorecard Asia Pacific (VSAPAC). They basically asked 3 main questions where the SME’s shared individually:

  1. What problems do they have as SME’s
  2. What facilities provided by government did SME’s find useful.
  3. What SME’s find that can be improved.

Among the problems that  SME’s experience were:

  • Difficulty of getting Funding
  • Difficulty in getting the goverment subsidized food packaging
  • Lacking of information on how to proceed in starting/expanding business and exporting products.
  • The difficulty of getting exported due to the difficulty of getting standards required as those required an operational premise, which would require funding.

Among the Facilities that SME’s find beneficial were:

  • Courses held by EDC
  • Workshops and Forums held by Business Development Services (BDS)
  • Incubator program under EDC
  • Tradeshows that were sponsored or subsidized by government
  • SME financing programmes

Among the things that could be improved:

  • Courses are sometimes facilitated by a malaysian, therefore they do are not familiar with the customs, rules and regulations of the country. Courses were therefore are mostly theoretical and lack practical values when applied in Brunei. The SME’s would like to have an experienced and succesful local to mentor them to become as succesful.
  • Talks and Forums seems ineffective as not much visible results.
  • Incubator facilities were located far from any town centre. Incubation programes are limited and not well marketed.
  • Tradeshows are sometimes are not well organized and promoted. e.g. the last halal expo coincided with the local products expo. The local products expo was not well advertise as it was only seen through big banners, and the radio advertising was done not on a popular channel.
  • SME Financing programmes were difficult to obtain.
  • Nutritional Analysis facility is slow and there were no queueing  system. As some SME’s have tried to apply since 2008 by stopping by, and each time they were asked to come again. The facility may be slow due to the lack of analysis equipment.
  • Packaging materials provided for SME’s are limited to certain expos and are not available continuously.

The facilitator ended the discussion by summarizing everyone’s points into basically create with the assistance of the government, an SME development roadmap on how anyone ne can be groomed to become a succesful entrepreneur.

Facebook Photos

EL-AMIR introduces Padian.com

10 April 2010, Saturday – The EL-AMIR (previously just AMIR) Consortium held another introduction briefing about Padian.com to SME’s, EDC incubatees  and officers of the Ministry of Industry and Primary Resources (MIPR) at iCentre.

The el-AMIR Consortium was chosen by the BEDB to help SME’s to market themselves through technology under the initiative called “buy brunei portal”.

The project that has been proposed by el-AMIR is the website Padian.com. The website is a portal for Brunei companies to promote themselves and their products. The first phase of the project is to help SME’s and other small companies find strategic partners locally, regionally and internationally. The final phase of the project is to enable SME’s to sell their products directly from the website. At the end of the introduction, the members of the consortium accepted and answered questions that SME’s had on the portal.

The el-AMIR consortium is expecting to officially launch the website at the end of the month.

More pics are available at:

http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=130962&id=550578077&l=6125742a0e

VSAPAC Incubation Technical Assistance Programme

8th March 2010, Monday – An Incuabation Technical Assistance programme was held at Entrepreneurial Development Centre, Sinaut, Tutong. The programme was organized by Vector Scorecard (Asia Pacific) Pte Ltd.

Among the participant were incubatees, selected SME’s and officers from EDC.

The objectives of the program was to help incubatees and SME’s understand more Continue reading

SME Halal Workshop 2010

3rd March 2010 – MIPR held another SME Halal Workshop.

The event was held at MIPR building in Berakas. The opening remarks were given by the guest of honor – the new MIPR permanent secretary, and the head of entrepreneurial development centre (EDC).

The first talk was “Preparing SMEs for the Global Halal Market” by Abdalhamid Evans from Imarat Consultants. Among the topics he talked about were:

  • The global opportunities that exist for any SME’s venturing into the halal market.
  • How the halal market is not just about food, but also the logistics of transporting it, and also on products such as cosmetics and pharmaceuticals.
  • How the recent global financial crisis has lead more people to consider more on quality rather than just cheap pricing.
  • Exemplary entrepreneurs in the US that succeeded in the Halal Market
  • List of attitudes that would make entrepreneurs successful. (I personally like the point about how we may need to sacrifice opportunities to focus on the right strategies)
  • How the Brunei Halal Brand that it had now made Brunei a Leader in the Halal Market.

The second speaker was Tina Jamaluddin. Her talk was about how her company started as a small sme and how it expanded into an internationally exporting company. She is also shared her tips on making an SME as successful.

In the the Q and A session later both speakers answered questions from the participants.

Later in the afternoon were talks by Rushdi of Mimit E technologies and Noel Shield of Ghanim International.

Related Article:

More pics of the event can be found at: http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=123507&id=550578077&l=486b0463c3

Pitching your Business Plan!

Do you need to know what investors are looking for in a business? David S. Rose is a serial entrepreneur turned serial investor. He shares his tips in presenting.

He shares that investors are not just investing in your business idea, they are also investing in you. So you have to show that you and your team have:

  • integrity
  • passion
  • experience
  • knowledge
  • skill
  • leadership
  • commitment
  • vision
  • realism and
  • coachability

and how to show all these in just a few minutes by using logical and relevant steps. Using an outline for presentation that he recommends.

At the end he gave his top 5 tips in presentation.

  1. Always use presentation mode
  2. Always use a remote control
  3. Your handouts are not your presentation
  4. Don’t read your speech
  5. Never look at the screen.

He mentioned the use of a remote control to change the slides of the presentation. Those remote controls are sold in Brunei for more about BND40- BND 100. In 2009, I found a mobile phone software that can transfom any java and bluetooth enabled devices into a remote control to change the slides on a bluetooth enable PC.

It is from http://www.mobilewitch.com You have to install the PC software on the computer and the mobile app on the phone.

Click on the following links to the download page.

LiveWIRE Business Plan Awards 2008/2009

LiveWIRE’s flagship event – the Business Plan Awards Prize Presentation Ceremony was Held on 10th December 2009 at the Hua Ho Manggis Ballroom.

Usually I would be a participant in this event, but I have been too busy this year to complete my business plan. But since I was a LiveWIRE Business Network Committee Member, I was involved in the events management as well as provided with a “booth” to show my company’s services.

The Guest of Honor was the Minister of Ministry of Industry and Primary Resources (MIPR) – Pehin Dato Seri Setia Hj Yahya Begawan Mudim Dato Paduka Hj. Bakar. The attendees consisted of the competition participants, representatives from government ministries and departments, parents and friends of the participants, liveWIRE members and committee.

I was to busy volunteering that I didn’t thought of taking pictures. Hope the pic gallery on livewire-brunei’s website updates soon.

I hope that some of the winners from this competition transform their business plan into a real running business like I did. Wish all of you Good luck! 🙂

For more official news of the events follow the links below.

http://www.brudirect.com/index.php/2009121112150/Local-News/livewire-contest-awards-winners.html

http://news.brunei.fm/2009/12/11/livewire-contest-awards-winners/

http://www.livewire-brunei.com/news_item.php?newsid=152

Leadership Camp 09/09

Picture of Participant deep in thought

The final LiveWIRE Leadership Camp of the year was held from 4 to 6 December 2009. The number of participants were very small compared to the previous batch. After leaving Bandar Seri Begawan, the participants were brought to Pekan Bangar. Due to the camp’s schedule overlapping with cuti-cuti temburong, the first session was held at the conference room of the district office until 3pm, where they were then transported to Sumbiling Eco Village for the second session. These sessions involved: Continue reading