Singaporean startups who are looking to participate in the Vietnamese market can now take advantage of a new partnership between the government agency International Enterprise Singapore (IE Singapore) and Vietnam’s largest Co-working space Toong.

The goal of the agreement is to help ease market entry.

The strategic partnership announced last week is part of IE Singapore’s Plug & Play Network that stretches from China to India and across Southeast Asia. For example, in China, IE Singapore partnered with UR Work and in India the agency has a similar agreement with Springboard.

It also is working on agreements in Malaysia, the Philippines and Indonesia.

The network hopes to impact 200-300 Singaporean companies every year.

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The partnership with Toong works as such:

  • Toong will provide ecosystem resources, which includes co-working spaces, access to its network and support/training resources.
  • Toong will also provide business, legal and financial advice to the startups
  • IE Singapore’s role is to find and partner startups from the Lion City that are looking to expand and grow overseas.

One reason why the Singapore/Vietnam partnership has been forged is because the city-state is the third largest foreign investor in Vietnam, and the largest investor amongst the ASEAN countries.

‘’This partnership essentially cements Toong as one of the gateway for Singapore enterprises looking for means to expand into Vietnam,” said Toong Chief Strategy Officer Phu Nguyen in a statement.

“Specifically, Toong will provide office solutions for Singapore companies and offer specific assistance on potential business connections, and advise them on company registration process as well local business landscape understanding,” he added.

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One specific advantage of using a co-working space is that, in Vietnam, leasing an office requires a 2-5 year commitment, which is not reasonable for many startups. Co-working spaces provide an office without having to sign a lease.

The ‘pre-entry business advisory and matching’ services will be provided by Dezan Shira & Associates, a multi-national professional services advisory firm.

IE Singapore is a government agency that promotes international trade and pushes Singaporean companies to go global. It has a network in 35 countries and has two grants to help finance the internationalisation.

Toong has five locations in Vietnam, including spots in the three major startup hubs of Ho Chi Minh City, Hanoi and Denang. In June, it raised funding from Indochina Capital to expand its network.