ASEAN Young Entrepreneurs conclude energetic Summit in Bangkok

Thirty-six visionary young leaders of ASEAN gathered at the Royal Orchid Sheraton Bangkok on September 2nd and 3rd 2019 to share with other young businessmen their successes, failures, challenges, concerns, and future plans.

Guided by a vision for a smart, sustainable and empowered ASEAN, the ASEAN Young Entrepreneurs Carnival was attended by global change makers, high level entrepreneurs, impact investors and high ranking governmental officials forming the ASEAN (+6) community; as well as by delegates from China, Japan, India, South Korea, Taiwan and Australia all of whom were interested in meeting and establishing ties with the new generation of young and dynamic ASEAN entrepreneurs.


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The ASEAN Young Entrepreneurs Carnival was a great opportunity to open new lines of communication with the upcoming generation of new businessman and build genuine friendships.

The successful Young Entrepreneur Carnival was organized by Young Entrepreneurs Chamber of Commerce (YECBK) led by Rutt Pongsurapipat, the Young Entrepreneur Chamber of Commerce (YEC) of the Thai Chamber of Commerce led by Gavin Vongkusolkit, and The Board of Trade of Thailand led by Prim Jitcharoongphorn.


First Day

The first day events received the greatest support from all the members of ASEAN states. It started with a stunning Muay Thai grand opening performance followed by remarks from Kobsak Pootrakooi, Deputy Secretary General of the Prime Minister Office for Political Affairs. Then, Kalin Sarasin, the Chairman of Thai Chamber of Commerce, proceeded to welcome the hundreds of young entrepreneurs conforming the audience.


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Kobsak Pootrakool


Soon after, an exciting line-up of great speakers ignited the morning session, which was concentrated on themes such as Hi-tech, sustainable society 5.0, changes in retail business, Blockchain, entrepreneurs’ capacity to solve global problems, and 5G and its impact on the new society.


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Kalin Sarasin


The afternoon continued at a fast pace, with presentation on mindfulness against technology’s distractions, women empowerment, gaming, re-skilling the workforce, the cultural power of ASEAN, and AI and VR.



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The diverse and interesting day of presentations of September 2nd concluded with a banquet party at LLhong 1919, a chic restaurant-bar on the other bank of the Chaopraya river where everybody had the opportunity to further commingle while enjoying a beautiful sunset. The evening reception had indeed the Carnival atmosphere that delivered a very unique and unforgettable experience among new friends.


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Second Day

The second day continued with a dynamic presentation format where changemakers from Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam spoke candidly about their businesses, projects, problems, challenges, failures and futures plans.


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The speakers

Here we present most of the successful ASEAN Young Entrepreneurs speakers featured during the Carnival, who enlightened the Summit with their experiences, humor, and young wisdom.

xx 01The first speaker was Philaiphone Vongpraseuth, the first female CEO leading a construction company to be listed successfully in the Lao Stock Exchange in 2017. Philly is the CEO of Solver Laos-Business & Investment Consultancy and partner in many other enterprises.

The next speaker was PaiPon Saiyadeth, CEO of Capital Residence managing residences and properties. She has a creative fabric factory that manufactures luxury hand-woven textiles for the global interior market. She is also involved in other businesses.

The following speaker was Douglas Corley, a China-based healthcare entrepreneur with eight year experience in transnational research and market entry strategy for growth-stage startups. He is passionate about problem solving and is bringing the next generation of solutions to the China healthcare market.

xx 02Dato Daniel Lee Kee Foong is Chief Executive Officer of Gofay Group, an airline that provides chartering flight, travel agency and other travel related businesses. He explained to the audience the challenges operating a new airline growing rapidly, specially has Gofay schedules 300 departures per day.

The next speaker brought change into the food business routine. Matt Reid, the co-founder at Maximal Concepts, changed the conversation into new restaurant management and branding. He participated in the creation of Mott 32, the Group’s flagship restaurant.

Phonesavanh Vilivong is a mother of three who uplifts and supports the Lao Coffee sector through Direct Trade. She tailored coffee training program for local baristas in the HORECA and consciously implements PPP model (profit, planet and people).

Wai Phyo is the Managing Director of Yathar Cho Industry Ltd., one of the largest food manufacturing companies in the country. He explained his business expansion into distribution, IT space and ecommerce ebusinesses.

Satoshi Takahashi, co-founder and CDO of Cost Science Inc., researches global economic trends and Japan’s future, focusing on disruptive technologies that could be implemented into large companies.

James Goh, a very young member of the Young Entrepreneur Association of Brunei, works in the renewable energy industry. In 2016, he founded G-Bio Energy Sdn Bhd, a company managing the whole supply chain from agriculture to logistic and to generating electricity.

Douglas Ga is a Singaporean technology entrepreneur founder of GBCI, a leading smart city solutions provider. Douglas deals with AI, robotics, virtual reality, big data and IoT to build smart cities all around Asia with the objective of connecting them into borderless urban services.

Pech Bolen, Chairman and CEO of Westline Education Group Co., manages six education brands in Cambodia and is successfully expanding into new areas. He delivered a powerful presentation about business and growth.

The next speaker, Doga Makiura from Japan, turned the audience attention into government impact on businesses. As CEO of Degas, Doga somehow ended up in Africa where his company buys and sells commodities on behalf of farmers in Ghana. He is also expanding online education service “Quipper” in Indonesia and the Philippines among many other endeavors in his portfolio.

xx 03Izzat Hazim, as Director of Sword GRC Malaysia and ASEAN Region, provides Risk Management Software to clients such as NASA, Nestle, Airbus and has over 1000 clients worldwide. In 2011, he returned to Malaysia to start an Aquaculture farm. Izzat is currently the Managing Director of Agro Gold Industries; which uses advanced farming technology to grow rockmelons. His products supply supermarkets across Malaysia and internationally.

Dr. Vanessa Teo is the founder and CEO of agri-tech startup company Agrome IQ International Sdn Bhd. Her services empower farmers to maximize plantation procedures. She uses modeling systems and algorithms to support in rice farming system optimization in Brunei.

She collaborated with University of Brunei Darussalam, IBM Research Lab New Delhi, Bangalore, Brazil and the USA and the Ministry of Industry and Primary Resources, Brunei.

Jirawat Panpiemras, Vice President at Bangkok Bank Public Company Limited, researches complex issues such as intellectual property, and policy issues in Thailand’s health insurance system among many other problems.

Thaweelap Rittapirom, member of the Board and an executive director of Bangkok Bank Public Company Limited, explained the changing role of bankers and the evolution of banking into the new economy.

xx 04Audrey Pe might have been the youngest entrepreneur among all presenters. She founded Women in Technology (WiTech) to bring up the number of women into the IT industry. WiTech also provides used laptops and curated tech education modules to under privileged school. Audrey will enter Stanford University in the fall of 2020.

Jack Thomas, the founder and CEO of BASE gym won “Asia’s Gym of the Year” at the region’s biggest fitness industry awards. Now, he is expanding from 1 to 3 branches in central Bangkok. Jack spoke about the fitness industry in Asia and the challenges ahead.

Dr. Thant Myint-U, an award-winning writer, historian, conservationist, and a former advisor to the President of Myanmar, brought academic perspective to the changes affecting ASEAN and the path forward.

Mrs. Christy Le (Lê Diệp Kiều Trang) is the CEO of GO-VIET, an on-demand multi-service platform providing a range of services including transportation, logistics, food delivery and payments. She is passionate about uplifting socioeconomically challenged members of the Vietnamese society.

She was Misfit’s CFO and COO from its founding until its acquisition by the Fossil Group for US$260 million.

For the past twenty one years, Dr. Mai Huu Tin has been Chairman and CEO of U&I Investment Corporation (Unigroup), the company he founded. His company currently owns over 50 subsidiaries and affiliates, and employs more than 20,000 people.

Theodore Khng is a 29 year-old accountant who has invented many organic skincare and healthcare products and has opened up his manufacturing unit in Singapore. Temasek Holding backed his research laboratory to co-develop more natural and organic products to fight common diseases rampant in the region.

Woo Sze Min is the founder of Gamurai, software-as-a-service technology enabler company marketing its flagship product – VEON@Experience. It is a suite of SaaS tools to empower the salon and stylists in their daily business operations. The invention has increased clients’ sales revenue by 10% and achieved cost savings of at least $4,000 per year by empowering staff with digital tools.

xx 06Nicole Zycinski-Singh was an advocate & solicitor of the Supreme Court of Singapore. An unexpected visit to Myanmar ignited her entrepreneurial spirit. Now she is managing the operations of the Killem Pest Pte Ltd and its sister companies in Singapore. The Killem Group of companies specialises in urban pest management and uses only the most effective technology and methods, and environmentally friendly chemicals.

Okhna Sok Piseth launched his first company “Toys and Me” in 2007 in Cambodia, and then expanded it into a diversified business that included G Gear, a mechanical and electrical engineering company. His company is the official distributor of LG Electronics products, and Hyundai Elevator.

Jirayut Srupsrisopa, co-founder and group CEO at Bitkub Capital Group Holding, has dedicated the majority of his career to the cryptocurrency and blockchain technology industry. His presentations focused on the emerging conditions and opportunities of this new currency market.

The current Thailand’s Minister of Higher Education, Science, Research and Innovation Dr. Suvit Maesincee also used the opportunity to speak about the ASEAN markets and opportunities for economic development.

Tom Chirathivat, a data driven new retail x digital expert, implements customer data initiatives to grow business opportunities. He has been dwelling into artificial intelligence and data analytics.

Vikrom Kromadit, chairman of AMATA Corporation and founder of industrial states, encouraged the audience to invest and develop new business in ASEAN. Moreover, he explained that new opportunities are arising out of the China and USA trade dispute that will benefit ASEAN.

xx 08Sam Lee is the founder and CEO of Blockchain Global Limited. Under his vision and leadership, the company has invested more than $300 million in 80 blockchain-enabled companies and projects.

Kosta Miachin, founder and visionary behind Vikasa, presented an up and coming lifestyle/experience brand of wellness, nutrition and hospitality. For him, all started with a passion for yoga, nutrition and well being. Now, his business has grown to a 54 key resort and 100 employee operation in just 6 years.

Ken Lai is the owner of Brandoville Studios and Brandoville Academy (Indonesia) and co-owner of Lemon Sky Studios (Malaysia). Ken Lai is responsible for running all facets of the two businesses in Jakarta and Malaysia. Lemon Sky now has more than 300 artists.

Mr. Alan Archapiraj, the founder and CEO of MAD virtual reality studio, concentrates his efforts in the innovative, dynamic and highly competitive gaming and interactive exhibition sectors. In establishing MAD, Alan was guided by his long-term commitment to social enterprises and innovation.

xx 10Lina Khalifeh, the Founder and owner of SheFighter (The First Self-Defense studio for women only in Jordan and the Middle East), empowers women physically, mentally and emotionally through self-defense training. The studio was founded in 2012 and has trained more than 15 thousand women all over the globe.

Richard Webb is an entrepreneur who has taken seven of his start-ups global and successfully exited those start-ups with trade sales and an IPO. Five years ago he founded Cataliize to help scale up businesses to the world and in doing so he created a new business model to more effectively catalyse ventures and social enterprises. Cataliize team has grown to over 180 people in 36 cities and serves over 40 ventures.

Pranitan Phornprapha, Kelly Go, Chakrapol Chandavimol, Suradech Taweesaengsakulthai and Wareeerat Toni Kitchaixankul completed the energetic lineup of young speakers featured during the two-day Young Entrepreneur Carnival in Bangkok on September 2nd and 3rd of 2019.

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