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/

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