Networking under the Stars @ Austin 18 – Entrepreneurs in Johor Bahru Dreaming of Success.
JOHOR BAHRU: The party kicked off last night with a free mingling of entrepreneurs who had come to learn from the success from industry leaders, get in on the what’s happening in the business world, form strategic partnerships, promote their services, or make new friends.
The event took place in Dreamspace – an intriguing new architectural concept that combines a work office space with a living space, with modern work spaces side by side with a high-rise swimming pool, gym, indoor golf and garden terrace.
Surrounded by rising construction and development, Dreamspace was the ideal location to bring everyone in attendance the progress that’s going on all around them to inspire their own business aspirations and dreams.
At 8.20pm the main event began, with guest speakers taking the stage to address the crowd, which started with a brief introduction to Dreamspace and Austin 18. Also speaking to the participants were industry leaders and innovators, who took the opportunity to share their entrepreneurial experience with guests as well as promote their products and services.
SmartPeep, a shining example of a hi-tech start-up
The next speaker, Dr. Lim Meng Hui talks about his AI start-up company SmartPeep and their product – an innovative home security system that incorporates the latest advancements in Cloud and mobile technology, augmented reality and real-time human detection camera technology.
Having worked on AI and machine learning for nine years, Dr. Lim Meng Hui’s team is a shining example of a hi-tech start-up.
Working together with a team of engineers and software developers, SmartPeep recognizes human intruder gestures that will minimize false alarms from happening, immediately alerts the authorities via a cloud network and, taking advantage of the stressed mental state of an intruder in the act, attempts to scare off the intruder by emitting realistic sound effects.
The team is confident that their product will fill a niche in home security that conventional camera-based security systems have been grossly ineffective at dealing with break-in incidents, some potentially dangerous as evidenced by the aftermath in several cases.
Dr. Lim Meng Hui adds that the company plans to modify the system to provide surveillance for children and elderly at home which will recognize when they are in trouble and immediately notify family and friends remotely.
Start small, focus on your strengths and recruit the right talents.
Addressing many of the concerns that entrepreneurs have about running a successful start-up, AMS Metal Solutions Managing Director Keith Keh Teng Yang summarized his experiences in three important key points: start small and resist the temptation to diversify into multiple areas too early, focus on developing one customer-centric product at a time, and find the right people for the job.
He added that it is important to re-examine the effects of decisions to ensure that they were good, with a good indicator being the performance of sales and profitability that followed those decisions.
Lastly, Keith urged that aspiring entrepreneurs to start pursuing their dreams by the time they’re around 24 to 27 years of age.
“Go and do something for yourself – but make sure you make a calculated risk”.
Again, he stressed the importance of identifying and recruiting the right talents and learning how to communicate with them. From these talents, some of them will become leaders and take full control of a part of your business with near autonomy.
Understand who or what your competitor really is.
Drawing from his experience from working with over 400 companies, iPrima Media‘s Chief Online Strategist Sabarudin Hashim points out three mistakes that most companies make in their effort to build their market share.
The first is forgetting the importance of visibility. In the market where most companies are selling very similar products, being visible to the consumer is key to get ahead and be noticed – and that building a strong online presence is the best way to get noticed.
The second mistake is getting trapped waging a price war, which inevitably leads to over-competition, a drop in product and service quality. A better strategy would be again to build a strong online branding presence, which communicates the best qualities of your product and in turn convert interested individuals into paying customers.
And lastly, not recognizing that the real competitor to their business today is not the shop next door, but the rise of disruptive new technologies. To put it in perspective, he says that, “The enemy is not the salon next door but the guy who pays an app to disrupt the market”.