Our government has got it going on From what we could see, Asian governments are far more active in fostering startups than the American government. Maybe it’s because startups are already quite mature in the states (and the entire Bay Area is so supportive already). Maybe it’s because orange is the new black (if you follow what we’re saying). Whatever it is, government startup intervention is just way stronger in Asia. For instance, just look at the Singapore government initiative, SPRING Singapore, that gives out grants to startups. The Malaysian government has a Cradle fund in place for seed stage and pre-seed stage grants to startups. There’s also MaGIC, which is not only an accelerator, but a workspace and an overall ecosystem providing support to get Asian startups through events AND organises trips to Stanford (like the one we just returned from). Governments here are focused on ensuring that startups have access to the best and latest technology and even have grants in place to support that. This is something we really didn’t see much of in the US. In fact, one of my friends in Dallas was so envious that our government had actually paid for us to learn about entrepreneurship and is that committed to us improving our business. We cannot express how grateful we are for the opportunity to have gone to Stanford.
Bigger, bigger,bigger It’s the land that brought us super sizing, so it shouldn’t really be a surprise that US startups focus on growth prospects. In fact, growth is pursued with dogged determination and single-mindedness. In America they don’t consider early revenue to be reflective of value, because there’s an understanding that your model will pivot and evolve a few times. While revenue is viewed else where as demonstrating traction and a proven model, in Asia revenue is a means of determining your worth at that point in time. Asian investors (well ours at least) focus on breaking even at 1.5 years. As a result, we are constrained from trying for those scalable things that will make our platform even greater. Instead we have to start selling and serving clients because of the need to break even from the start. From speaking with the other attendees, I would dare say that about halfare facing the same creativity stifling hurdle. It’s disappointing, but it largely reflects the differences in our values; Asia is a traditional and conservative society after all.
Our trip to the land of the free was everything we could have dreamed of. And while it would be easy to think that America is so far ahead of us, among all the differences there were reminders that there really is no place like home.
Want a laugh?
No holiday is complete without a home movie, right? Well, here’s our pitch video. It’s cringe worthy, but hey, it got us to Stanford!
Wanna read more about SushiVid's learning experiences? Check out our post on SushiVid goes to Jakarta for Influencer Marketing!