SilTerra Shares Insights on Building a Global Business in MDEC’S Malaysia Tech Month 2020
SilTerra was recently invited to participate in a panel discussion titled ‘Global Champions- Building Malaysia’s Billion Ringgit Revenue Company’. Organized by Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC) as part the Malaysia Tech Month 2020 program, this panel discussion was moderated by Ms. Low Ngai Yuen, CEO of WCIT Malaysia, and joined by Mr. Danny Leong, Group CEO of GHL Systems Berhad and Mr. Sabran Samsuri, Chief Operating Officer of Inari Technology Sdn Bhd. SilTerra was represented by Mr. Tan Eng Tong, Vice President of Strategic Management. (Click to view panel discussion)
With Malaysia seeking to establish itself as a hub for digital innovation, trade and investments, this panel discussion was aimed at highlighting some of the essentials in building a billion ringgit company. In his response to ‘What constitutes a billion ringgit company idea’, Mr. Tan began by stating that fundamentally, the idea of a billion ringgit company boiled down to innovation, which is not just about inventions but also about having new ways of looking at things. Secondly, there needs to be a global perspective of running the business, which translates to the need to have a target market that is big enough so that a portion of it could be captured for a billion ringgit. His last point was on the importance for alignment between employees and management on business goals, including shareholders who need to recognize and support the capital employed to achieve the first two points.
Responding to the moderator, he replied that Malaysia’s potential for billion ringgit industries is not necessarily limited to our natural resources such as petroleum and oil palm. As long as one is innovative enough and looks at opportunities that are big enough, one can even make traditional business models such as hailing taxis and selling books into billion ringgit companies.
Mr. Tan added that a change in mindset is essential when growing a start-up into a billion ringgit company. This will require many changes in terms of organizational structure, partnerships, supply chain and so on. One needs to be quick to transform mindsets while running the business as they phase through these transitions. To put things into perspective, he explained that a 1% yield problem in a $20 million business is orders of magnitude different from a 1% yield problem in a billion ringgit business.
He also stressed on the need for businesses to continually provide value add to their customers and markets. He explained that SilTerra has evolved in the very competitive semiconductor industry by developing areas of technology that are niche but advanced in their own right. These include chips for portable diagnostic point-of-care testing in healthcare, silicon photonics for data centers and ultrasound sensors for medical and consumer devices, to name a few. He added that customers recognize the innovation in these solutions, and as a result, prefer to partner with SilTerra to develop new solutions for their emerging markets.
Malaysia Tech Month 2020 is organized by MDEC. It is a month-long event of curated speeches, workshops and panel discussions featuring thought leaders from the digital and technology space. It is aimed at bringing together domestic and foreign investors, SMEs, start-ups, entrepreneurs and government stakeholders to share experiences and showcase innovation that will drive Malaysia’s digital economy forward and establish Malaysia as the Heart of Digital ASEAN.
To view MDEC’s MTM2020 panel discussion on ‘Global Champions- Building Malaysia’s Billion Ringgit Revenue Company’, please click here.