1. Startups

42Geeks Founder Chok Ooi Talks about the Potential of Startups to Digital Talent in Southeast Asia

42Geeks is a technology business network of investors, unicorn founders, and startup ecosystem facilitators from Silicon Valley

Global technology network 42 geeks visited Jakarta on a series of tours to Southeast Asia on 21-24 February 2024. In today's visit (22/2), 42Geeks collaborated with Startupindonesia.co to bring together the founder Indonesian startup with global investors.

For your information, 42Geeks is a technology business network consisting of leading investors and founders unicorn, and startup ecosystem facilitator from Silicon Valley. 42Geeks was originally called Geeks on Plane (GOAP) which was founded by Dave McClure, a Silicon Valley investor who is also the founder of 500 Startups) in 2008, then disbanded.reboot in 2022.

DailySocial.id had the opportunity to have a brief chat with Chok Ooi, Co-Founder of 42Geeks who is also Co-Founder of Agility.io and Kenzie Academy, to explore his perspective regarding Indonesia's digital ecosystem.

The potential of the ASEAN digital ecosystem

Chok highlighted several things related to the potential in Indonesia's digital industry. First, talent supply engineering is one of the key factors in Southeast Asia's digital ecosystem. According to him, Indonesia still lacks technological talent, especially compared to Vietnam, whose population is much smaller.

"The amount of talent in Indonesia is still less likely to be related to education. Meanwhile in Vietnam, the education system focuses a lot on technology, science and mathematics. They produce a lot of talent, which is then exported to work for various startups in the world."

He said that Indonesia has the potential to develop as a strong technology center, but to get there, training and education to produce technology talent also needs to be increased.

Then, Chok revealed the sectors he was exploring in Southeast Asia, especially long-term technology. Some of them are AI, healthtechand climatetech, which is believed to be a large sector in the world.

"Clean transportation, clean industrial areas, which are also efficient, are sectors that we are currently exploring. We hope that ASEAN can encourage the development of innovation in this sector in the next decade."

As an illustration, sector climatetech and healthtech-Also Biotech, is being widely explored by innovation developers, investors and the government in Indonesia.

Healthy startup with reasonable valuation

Chok shared his views regarding the declining startup funding climate in the Southeast Asia region. The drying up of funding amidst market turmoil has made investors more careful and selective in disbursing funds. On the other hand, market turmoil has had an impact on correcting the valuation of a number of late-stage startups (late stage), which continues its impact until the startup stage growth and advanced (series A, B, and C).

Chok assesses that this situation is very difficult for the founder, but the silver lining is that the valuation has dropped to a reasonable number. This is different from the investment trend of a decade ago which made startup valuation figures soar high. In Indonesia, the challenge is that many local VCs experience it dry powder because of the excessive valuation.

"It is true that valuations have fallen, but this is important because valuations have become more realistic. I hope the digital ecosystem will grow better again from this situation. Once [valuations] are corrected, we should see many healthy companies being born. And these startups, I hope in The next 5-10 years will be unicorn biggest or next successful company."

Investment for generations founder next

As Co-Founder of a number of companies, Chok admits that he really understands the difficult situation faced by people founder startups in navigating business to seeking funding.

He advised, "Don't think too much investment winter or something else—when people are willing to spend money to use our product, that's new a real company. Investment will come by itself. Just focus on building the product, founder must have mindset long term to build something that may not exist now, but will exist in the future," he said.

He also highlighted how Silicon Valley is often referred to as the mecca of the technology world. In fact, the label emerged because the San Francisco-based hub was started 2-3 decades earlier. As a result, many generations founder Success ends from there exit from the startup they founded.

"Indonesia has seen it founder successful first generation. I hear [the success of the next generation] will happen, and I hope it's not just [success] for us founder only, but the employees. Founder success must support the next generation, then the next generation, and so on. This will be a snowball effect, you will see the momentum for yourself. That's how you build an ecosystem sustainable."

More Coverage:

This is also the reason 42Geeks brought its group to Southeast Asia to transfer knowledge and experience in building a business. According to Chok, 42Geeks has various connections and resources that can be integrated inclusively with the digital ecosystem in Indonesia.


Disclosure: DailySocial.id is a media partner for the 42Geeks event in Indonesia

Are you sure to continue this transaction?
processing your transactions....
Transaction Failed
try Again

Sign up for our

Subscribe Newsletter
Are you sure to continue this transaction?
processing your transactions....
Transaction Failed
try Again