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ECONOMY

Spreading the start-up spirit for development

Updated at Monday, 13 Nov 2017, 16:52
The Hanoitimes - In 2017, the start-up spirit has been spreading efficiently, with many activities supporting start-ups implemented with diversification. As such, many innovative start-ups have received large amount of investment and been successful.
If 2016 is considered to be the year of start-up nation, 2017 is when the start-up spirit is spreading strongly among business community. According to the Ministry of Science & Technology, 2017 marked the start-up campaign growing strong nationwide. As such, innovative start-up did not mean the effort of a certain ministry or administrative agency, but to spread among numerous ministries, agencies, provinces, political – social organizations and associations. Many provinces, cities have a high number of start-ups such as Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh, Danang, Dong Thap. 
 
MimosaTek aspires to implement precision agriculture in every farm with world class technology.
MimosaTek aspires to implement precision agriculture in every farm with world class technology.
Ho Chi Minh is one of the pioneers in Vietnam implementing the Decision No. 844 of the government with regard to the proposal of “supporting the national innovative start-up ecosystem until 2025”. So in order to support small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in the innovating process, improving competitiveness and integrating globally, Ho Chi Minh has implemented the program supporting innovation and start-ups. 

After one year of implementing, the program has supported and oriented the city’s innovative start-up ecosystem. The program also formed a network of 60 qualified consultants to support incubators and accelerate start-up process; connecting projects and start-ups with angel investors and capital ventures. 

According to the Center of Knowledge Transferring & Start-up Supporting under the Hanoi National University, the center has organized events to facilitate innovation and start-up, such as: Talk show “From start-up to smart start-up”; presentations on start-up projects. In particular, the center has launched a series of events “Café Business Startup” as a platform to connect capital ventures with start-ups; creating a playground to share knowledge, inspiring the start-up spirit for students. 
 
A part of Honest Farm.
A part of Honest Farm.
In reality, start-up is a difficult process and thus has a high risk of failure. If start-ups do not have the mentality of accepting failure, it will be difficult to form a start-up nation. However, according to a survey “Vietnam Start-up index 2015 - 2016” conducted by Vietnam Chamber of Industry & Commerce (VCCI), the fear of failure among business community in Vietnam has gradually reduced. Specifically, in 2013, the rate of adults feared for failure is 56.7%; in 2014, the rate was 50.1% and in 2015 was 45.6%. Moreover, in start-up community, a lot of workshops and conferences has been straightforward with regard to stories of failure in business, such as programs “Fail Smart” or Fail2Win. As such, failure in start-ups are mentioned a lot more than before with respect and appreciation. This is an important transformation in mindset of young people in Vietnam. 

Besides, in addition to field of Information & Technology (IT), in 2017, start-up spirit has also appeared in agricultural sector. Currently, Vietnam is an agricultural country, but less than 1% enterprises decided to invest in this sector. However, in 2017, the tide has turned with a lot of hi-tech projects in farming, which are coming from diversified resources. It is no doubt that agriculture is a difficult sector full of risks and challenges, as such it is not easy to call for investment from private sources or from foreign investors. However, many young Vietnamese have tried starting up in agriculture and been successful, such as MimosaTEK, Soi Bien or Trang Trai Trung Thuc (Honest farm).

Not satisfying with domestic market, the breakthrough of start-up community came with the appearances of many start-up projects on international scale, which are aimed to international markets. This proves not only the maturity of the start-up community, but also a positive sign for Vietnam integration in world’s economy. Successes from the year of start-up nation will lay foundation for Vietnam to fulfil the 2020 target of having 1 million companies. 
Ngoc Thuy
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