Jun 11, 2011

Curiosity About 1Pengguna.com

Web and social media are part of my interests. Besides reviewing about commercial web project, I think I need to know more about the government web project. Hence, I take this opportunity to review Malaysia government's web project, 1Pengguna.com or 1Pengguna.net.

When I read the news about RM1.4million web portal for consumers, I think it is a good move to help the rakyat and consumers maximizing the values from their spending. However, as a consumer, the 1Pengguna.com really disappointed me. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t mean to criticize this project.

Issues & Questions:
1. Domestic Trade, Co-operatives and Consumerism Ministry already owned Smart Consumer Portal (http://www.smartconsumer.my/) since 2009, it is a consumer portal which serves as almost the same role with 1Pengguna.com. So, why they still spent RM1,400,000 to develop a new one instead of improving the Smart Consumer Portal?

2. The minister claimed that they have 3.5 million hits last 2 days (source from newspaper) and caused the website “teething problem”. However, the registered users in 1Pengguna.com are only 2903 (1.20pm, 11/6/2011). Besides that, through their social media links inside 1Pengguna.com, they have only 88 channel views on YouTube, 23 followers on Twitter, 142 Facebook friends (Not Facebook Page). Trying to be optimistic, total up the number, it is even less than 0.001% from 3,500,000 hits. So, is it logic to have 3.5 million hits?

3. The latest news zone in 1Pengguna.com, they are not fully consumer–related news. Those are only link to bernama.com’s news. The website footer has poor alignment too and also poor integration with social media like Facebook. We can see it is not professional enough and should it cost RM1.4million?

Curiosity About The Contractor Company – Sand Consulting Sdn Bhd
According to TheStarOnline (http://thestar.com.my/news/story.asp?file=%2F2011%2F6%2F11%2Fnation%2F8883275&sec=nation), the contractor is Sands Consulting Sdn Bhd (http://www.my-sands.com). I visited their official website, they are just using open source Joomla (I used that template before) to build their website instead of developing it with own web expertise. After reading their history, I realized that it is a 9 year old company in Malaysia.

Sand Consulting’s History
Sands Consulting is a 100% Bumiputra status company incorporated in March 21, 2002 under The Companies Act 1965 of Malaysia with the registration number of 574596-M. Since then the Company has channeled substantial resources towards developing its main activity, which to provide solutions and products from plain network cabling to complex multi-systems integration.

Through the “Reach To Us” zone on the website right bottom, I click on their Twitter(http://twitter.com/#!/sands) and YouTube channel (http://www.youtube.com/user/sands), trying to follow them on Twitter. 3 followers on its Twitter is not the issue, but their official website on Twitter account. It is http://www.sands.com/.

According to their About Us: “Las Vegas Sands Corp. (NYSE: LVS) is the leading global developer of destination properties (integrated resorts) that feature premium accommodations, world-class gaming and entertainment, convention and exhibition facilities, celebrity chef restaurants, and many other amenities.” 

So, are they tech company or properties developer? Are they Malaysia company or US company registered in Malaysia?

Regarding to their YouTube channel, it is better for you to see yourself at http://www.youtube.com/user/sands.

There are a lot of criticisms to 1Penggnua.com. It is a RM1,400,000 project, 100 x RM14,000. This amount can fund many quality youth projects or for aspiring entrepreneurs to implement start up their small business, helping many people in Malaysia. Hence, it is logic to see many Malaysian feel angry, feel frustrated, feel disappointed with 1Pengguna.com.
The "issues and questions" section are just my opinion, doesn't mean to criticize anyone. 

Jun 7, 2011

Startup Weekend Malaysia 2011

I participated in Startup Weekend Malaysia last month. Thanks for the ticket sponsorship from MDEC & entrepreneurs.my, I was able to join for free. The event was organized by Global Entrepreneurship Sdn Bhd, and it was held at UniRazak, Kuala Lumpur.

What Is Startup Weekend?

Startup Weekends are weekend-long, hands-on experiences where entrepreneurs and aspiring entrepreneurs can find out if startup ideas are viable.  On average, half of Startup Weekend’s attendees have technical backgrounds, the other half have business backgrounds.

Beginning with open mic pitches on Friday, attendees bring their best ideas and inspire others to join their team. Over Saturday and Sunday teams focus on customer development, validating their ideas, practicing LEAN Startup Methodologies and building a minimal viable product. On Sunday evening teams demo their prototypes and receive valuable feedback from a panel of experts.

We had a pitching session on the 1st night, many participants including me have pitched the business ideas. After the pitching session, there were voting session to select top 10 ideas. And unfortunately, my idea was not in top 10 list. Then, I decided to join a social entrepreneurship team with totally 13 people in the team. As a entrepreneurship student and a SIFEr, I'll always support social entrepreneurship, it was quite fun when we can discuss about how to help people through entrepreneurship. 4 of my teammates were the champion of Digi Social Challenge, and we were working on their social entrepreneurship idea – MyOneVillage.

MyOne Village is a social entrepreneur group creating a knowledge and service-based platform, aspiring to elevate the wealth of the poor by match making with the needs of the urbanites. During Startup Weekend, we focused on starting niche tour agency-like operation targeting at primary school children to visit unexplored rural areas.

Although we are not really start the business, the experience was really cool when working as a team to build business startup with a good business model. Together we discuss, we argue for better decision, and building better friendship among us!

MyOneVillage Website Interface Upper Part

Win an iPad Through Social Shout Contest
There was a contest by Social Shout (www.socialshout.me) on the third day. All the participants were joining the contest, competiting for highest ranking. Participants just have to login through their various social media account (Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Foursquare), and the socialshout engine will calculate the activities on social media. I was a lucky one and I’m consider as a active user in social media, I got the highest after submitted my Facebook, Twitter and YouTube information. Hence, I won an iPad, a cool device which will increase my daily productivity and efficiency.

Networking Opportunities With Mentors
The startup teams were mentored by different professional mentors such as Peter Tam from Microsoft Malaysia, Wayne Lim from SME Malaysia, Renuka Sena from Proficeo, Venture Capitalist Chok Kwee Bee and so on. It was a great experience when listening to the mentors’ advice as we are still new to business. However, I think is even more important to have the networking opportunities, so that we can continue to get good advice and instruction in the future.

Startup Weekend Malaysia(KL) 2011 Event Group Photo

There are some interesting online tools or resources recommended by Startup Weekend (eg. Customer Development, Traffic research, Forms/Surveys, Personal storage, Survey tools, Ads platforms and so on) which can help your startup, just click on this link: http://startupweekend.org/resources/

Wanna know more about Startup Weekend?
Do check out their website at http://startupweekend.org/ or http://malaysia.startupweekend.org/