MOU signing between SIHUB co-founder and CEO Huynh Kim Tuoc and MaGIC CEO Ashran Dato’ Ghazi. Witnessed by (from left to right): Pham Hong Quat, Director of National Agency for Technology Entrepreneurship and Commercialisation Development (NATEC) under Vietnam’s Ministry of Science and Technology; Sofian Akmal Abd. Karim, Consul-General of the Consulate General of Malaysia in Ho Chi Minh City; and Nguyen Khac Thanh, Deputy Director of Department Science & Technology of Ho Chi Minh City and Supervisor of SIHUB

The Malaysian Global Innovation & Creativity Centre (MaGIC) and Saigon Innovation Hub (SIHUB) announced a strategic partnership aimed to drive collaboration between Malaysian and Vietnamese startups, as well as to provide a platform for the startups to expand their initiatives into both countries.

The two organisations will collaborate in the Runway to the World (R2TW) programme, a global startup exchange programme that aims to help entrepreneurs making connections with local key ecosystem players.

The programme work by helping participating startups tailor their business model to target country, then find suitable partners, investors, and clients to expand and accelerate growth.

It is focusing on startups working in these four categories: Education and training; high-tech agriculture and food processing; green energy, environment, healthcare and sustainable tourism; artificial intelligence, robotics and smart systems.

Participants of the R2TW programme will also have access to MaGIC’s ASEAN Centre of Entrepreneurship (ACE). The centre will help Vietnamese startups expanding to Malaysia and other ASEAN countries by providing services such as visa applications for hiring foreign talent, tax and accounting, clerical assistance, and opening of bank accounts.

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“Our partnership with SIHUB also marks the launch of our own upcoming entrepreneurship exchange programme, which will help connect entrepreneurs with the region’s key startup community builders to facilitate growth and build a truly connected entrepreneurship ecosystem,” said MaGIC CEO Ashran Dato’ Ghazi in a press statement.

“Through the programme, we also hope to support and enable entrepreneurs who are looking to expand in ASEAN by giving them access to the benefits of cross-border collaboration like this at a regional level,” he continued.

MaGIC also runs a global startup accelerator programme which accepts its first batch in July last year.

SIHUB was founded to support Vietnam’s department of science and tech in supporting and promoting innovation and tech entrepreneurship in Ho Chi Minh City. It has received support from the Asian Development Bank (ADB) during its inception.

Image Credit: MaGIC