Animasi Upin & Ipin, Dari Kampung Durian Runtuh ke Los Angeles

Siapa sangka watak sampingan dua kanak -kanak yang sedang bermain di tepi jalan di Kampung Durian Runtuh dalam filem animasi Geng Pengembaraan Bermula yang dicipta lebih 15 tahun lepas kini telah melangkah ke Anugerah Akademi iaitu majlis pengiktirafan filem paling gah di dunia.

Yang dimaksudkan ialah dua nama  ikonik iaitu Upin dan Ipin menerusi animasi Upin & Ipin; Keris Siamang Tunggal yang tersenarai sebagai 32 calon akhir kategori filem animasi terbaik anugerah berkenaan.

Ketika catatan ini ditulis, peminat tempatan mungkin sudah sedia maklum perjuangan filem terbitan Les’ Copaque itu untuk menjadi lima calon terbaik sudah berakhir namun pesona karya Malaysia itu pastinya akan terus mekar dan menjadi inspirasi kepada pembikin animasi digital lain untuk terus mengorak langkah ke persada global.

Les’ Copaque telah buktikan karya animasi Malaysia bukan sekadar jaguh serantau sahaja kerana filem itu telah memenangi Filem Cetera Terbaik pada Festival Filem Animasi Antarabangsa (Animaze) di Montreal, Kanada pada tahun lepas.

Bercakap kepada wakil Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC), penerbitnya, Burhanuddin Md Radzi mengakui animasi berkenaan sememangnya dihasilkan untuk pasaran global dengan dimasukkan elemen budaya tempatan.

Katanya, kerja seni menghasilkan Upin & Ipin; Keris Siamang Tunggal itu selama lima tahun dengan kos membikin sebanyak RM20 juta menjadi bukti kesungguhan Les’ Copaque memartabatkan animasi tempatan di mata dunia.

“ Segala kerja produksi perlu teliti. Menulis skrip dan plot bukan kerja satu malam, banyak tenaga teknikal yang profesional digunakan untuk menghasilkan karya ini,” katanya.

Namun demikian,  di sebalik ‘kekalahan’ Upin & Ipin memecah tembok kebal pencalonan Anugerah Oscar, mereka sebenarnya sudah menang besar bersandarkan kutipan tayangan sebanyak RM26 juta.

Jangan pula terkejut jika angka berkenaan terus meningkat dan menjadi filem Malaysia dengan kutipan tertinggi. Mungkin satu lagi sejarah baharu bakal dilakar oleh keluarga Upin dan Ipin ini.

Ini kerana menurut Burhanuddin, dalam tempoh terdekat, filem itu akan ditayangkan di 10,000 pawagam di China dengan jangkaan kutipan RM2 billion.

Ujar beliau, syarikat telah melabur RM6 juta untuk  promosi di negara yang mempunyai lebih 1.4 billion penduduk itu.

“ Atas sebab itulah sehingga kini filem berkenaan masih belum ditayangkan di pelbagai platform internet dan stesen televisyen tempatan kerana kita berusaha untuk menayangkan di beberapa buah negara lagi,” katanya.

Menurutnya, selepas China, Upin & Ipin; Keris Siamang Tunggal akan turut mengetuk pasaran Eropah apabila bakal ditayangkan di 200 buah pawagam di Turki.

Rancak berbual tentang animasi dan pengalaman menghantar pencalonan ke Oscar, bekas jurutera petroleum itu turut ‘membocor rahsia’ yang pastinya mengundang keterujaan kepada peminat Upin dan Ipin.

Katanya, sedikit masa lagi, peminat filem itu berpeluang menikmati pemandangan indah Kampung Durian Runtuh apabila dua model taman tema (seperti Disneyland) bakal dibina.

Jelas beliau, taman tema berkonsep indoor akan ‘muncul’ di Kuala Lumpur dengan pelaburan sebanyak RM60 juta.

Manakala satu lagi berkonsepkan outdoor pula dengan pelaburan mencecah billion ringgit namun lokasinya belum dapat ditetapkan.

“ Mungkin MDEC boleh membantu kami dalam aspek ini dengan mencari lokasi sesuai,” katanya.

Menutup bicara, Burhanuddin turut mengambil kesempatan memberi kredit kepada MDEC yang ‘menglibatkan’ diri dalam penghasilan animasi berkenaan dengan sokongan berterusan.

#BinaBersama #aniMY

Website Perniagaan Siap Dalam Dua Minit

Laman web perniagaan boleh disiapkan dalam tempoh dua minit sahaja? Bunyinya tidak masuk akal namun tahukah anda sebuah syarikat teknologi tempatan berkeupayaan mendigitalkan perniagaan anda sekelip mata.

Bagaimanapun, terdapat ‘dua syarat asas’ yang perlu dipenuhi iaitu yang pertama, perniagaan anda (tidak kiralah menjual keropok, produk kayu atau barangan sukan) mestilah mempunyai laman Facebook rasmi. Contohnya Keropok Lekor Ayu atau Perabot Hero.

Seterusnya anda perlu mempunyai akses sebagai admin untuk laman Facebook berkenaan.

Syarat berkenaan dikenakan Akademi Usahawan Mikro terhadap usahawan yang mahu mendigitalkan perniagaan mereka sekiranya mahu menggunakan khidmat syarikat itu.

Ketua Pegawai Eksekutif Akademi Usahawan Mikro, Abd Azharee Abdul Wahid berkata, pihaknya menyedari terdapat usahawan beranggapan bahawa mempunyai laman web perniagaan merupakan proses yang rumit serta memakan masa namun namun pihaknya mempunyai kepakaran untuk mendigitalkan perniagaan sekelip mata.

“ Usahawan yang mahu mendigitalkan perniagaan boleh mengunjungi laman web Digasto dan syarikatnya yang beroperasi di Bandar Sunway,  Selangor.

“ Sehingga Disember tahun lalu, sebanyak 79 syarikat telah mendapatkan perkhidmatan kami untuk menggunakan aplikasi ini. Selepas pendaftaran, kami membimbing mereka di akademi untuk belajar kaedah yang betul setelah mendigitalkan perniagaan.

“ Antara yang didedahkan, ilmu tentang eCommerce dan sebagainya kerana kita mahu usahawan ini cross border dan tidak statik dalam negara sahaja. Tambahan pula, laman web yang dibangunkan kami untuk peniaga ini mudah dikendalikan,” katanya ketika ditemui baru -baru ini.

Menurut Abd Azharee, antara usahawan terawal yang menggunakan khidmatnya ialah Katta Kayu iaitu syarikat perabot yang beroperasi di Hulu Langat, Selangor.

Pemilik Katta Kayu, Fazli Shah Simpon berkata, sebelum ini syarikatnya hanya menggunakan Facebook sahaja namun beliau menyedari perlunya laman web untuk membina profail perniagaan.

“ Masalah yang dihadapi sebelum ini ialah apabila jumpa syarikat yang tawarkan untuk menghasilkan laman web, ia memakan masa untuk disiapkan selain tidak praktikal tetapi menerusi kerjasama dengan Digasto, saya mendapati ianya sangat mudah,” katanya.

Isteri Fazli Shah, Ilmi Shukri Khodori yang turut terlibat menguruskan perniagaan perabot itu berkata, dia hanya menghabiskan masa selama empat jam di Akademi Usahawan Mikro untuk belajar selok-belok menguruskan laman web yang dibangunkan Digasto.

Katanya, pada bulan kedua mempunyai laman web, mereka mendapati peningkatan tempahan perabot dan pendapatan.

Lebih membanggakan, kerjasama Akademi Usahawan Mikro dengan Katta Kayu itu turut melayakkan mereka menerima anugerah Top Seller sempena Hari Terbuka Ecommerce 2019 anjuran Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC).

Sementara itu, MDEC selaku agensi utama yang menerajui ekonomi digital di negara ini turut menawarkan kemudahan serupa kepada usahawan.

Kaedahnya juga mudah apabila anda hanya perlu mengunjungi portal go-ecommerce.my.

Segala maklumat dan kaedah untuk mendigitalkan perniagaan anda ada di situ, hanya menekan butang YES dan bersedia untuk melayari fasa baharu perniagaan anda.

#BinaBersama #eUsahawan #goEcommerce

Impak kursus eUsahawan, pembuat kraftangan Orang Asli kini lebarkan perniagaan chalet

Alumni peserta kursus eUsahawan anjuran Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC), Helmi Naim Ahmad teruja apabila perniagaan kraftangan yang diusahakan secara kecil-kecilan kini mampu berkembang sehingga mewujudkan cabang perniagaan baharu iaitu chalet.

Helmi, 25, yang juga pemuda masyarakat Orang Asli suku Temuan di Kampung Ulu Chembong, Rembau, Negeri Sembilan  berkata, jenama Temuan Abo Craft kini semakin dikenali malahan mula menarik perhatian pelancong antarabangsa.

Berkongsi pengalaman dengan MDEC, Helmi berkata, dia menyertai kursus berkenaan pada 2018 yang memberi input berguna bagaimana untuk mempromosikan perniagaan secara digital melibatkan penggunaan Facebook.

“Sejak itu, saya mendapati permintaan terhadap kraftangan semakin meningkat sehingga mencecah 70 peratus berbanding jualan sebelum itu.

“Saya mendapat idea baharu iaitu membina beberapa unit chalet di sekitar kawasan bengkel kraftangan kerana lokasinya terletak  berhampiran sungai, hutan dan gunung yang mempunyai tarikan alam semula jadi,” katanya.

Menurutnya, chalet berkenaan menjadi pilihan pelajar sekolah menengah dan pusat pengajian tinggi untuk aktiviti kem motivasi dan sebagainya.

Kata Helmi, ekoran wujud perniagaan baharu, dia terpaksa menggaji dua pekerja tetap dan mengambil beberapa orang pekerja separuh masa yang terdiri daripada penduduk kampung untuk membantu melancarkan perniagaan.

“Lebih mengujakan, chalet saya kini turut menjadi pilihan pelancong luar dari Mexico, Jerman, Afrika Selatan, Korea Selatan dan China,” katanya.

Ditanya tentang perancangan tahun ini, Helmi berkata, dia dalam proses membina taman herba berhampiran chaletnya.

“Taman berkenaan kelak akan ditanam dengan pokok-pokok herba yang sering digunakan oleh penduduk kampung di sini sekaligus memberi pengalaman baharu kepada pengunjung,” katanya.

Ditanya tentang ‘cinta pertamanya’ iaitu penghasilan kraftangan, Helmi berkata, dia tetap memberi tumpuan kepada perniagaan itu malahan pada tahun ini bercadang untuk mengeluarkan perabot jenis resin yang masih baharu di negara ini.

“Selain itu, saya turut aktif menyertai beberapa seminar dan pameran melibatkan kraftangan di seluruh negara dalam usaha memperkenalkan lagi produknya.

“Pada tahun ini, saya juga bercadang untuk lebih aktif di platform digital bagi memastikan dapat melebarkan jaringan perniagaan dan seterusnya menarik segmen pelanggan baharu,” katanya.

#BinaBersama #eUsahawan

Rebut peluang promosi perniagaan anda kepada 497 juta orang!

Sekiranya anda seorang usahawan yang sentiasa mahu meneroka pasaran baharu, artikel ini mungkin dapat membantu.

Bayangkan produk atau perkhidmatan anda memasuki satu pasaran yang cukup luas kerana komuniti di situ terdiri daripada campuran penduduk Indonesia ( 270 juta), Filipina (108 juta), Vietnam (96 juta) dan Malaysia seramai 31 juta.

Itulah realiti yang berlaku dalam ‘dunia’ Weibo, sebuah aplikasi media sosial utama di China. Mengapakah di negara itu Weibo mampu menenggelamkan populariti Facebook yang merupakan laman sosial paling popular di dunia?

Hal ini kerana Facebook ‘tidak lagi wujud’  sejak 2009 selepas kerajaan China mengharamkannya. Keputusan itu dilakukan ekoran tindakan aktivis kemerdekaan  Xinjiang menggunakan Facebook sebagai medium menyebarkan ideologi mereka dan perkara ini sangat dibimbangi oleh kerajaan China.

Era Weibo di China bermula pada Ogos 2009 dan sehingga kini ia mempunyai seramai 497 juta pengguna yang aktif setiap bulan. Di sinilah wujudnya pasaran yang sangat besar untuk aktiviti perdagangan digital apabila jumlah pengunjungnya menyamai populasi  penduduk di empat buah negara Asia Tenggara yang dinyatakan tadi.

Menyedari potensi besar ini, kerajaan Malaysia menerusi Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation  (MDEC) pantas menandatangani Memorandum Persefahaman (MOU) dengan Weibo baru – baru ini.

Ketua Pegawai Operasi MDEC, Datuk Ng Wan Peng berkata, kerjasama itu bakal membawa manfaat besar kepada negara kerana pengguna Weibo di Malaysia boleh memperkenalkan produk mereka sekaligus menjadi medium promosi yang sangat efisien.

Di pihak kerajaan pula katanya, platform berkenaan dapat digunakan untuk mempromosikan Tahun Melawat Malaysia 2020 dan Sidang Kemuncak Pemimpin Kerjasama Ekonomi Asia Pasifik (APEC) di Kuala Lumpur yang mana kedua-dua program ini sangat penting kepada negara.

Sehebat manakah pengaruh Weibo? Mari kita lihat statistik yang didedahkan Pengurus Besar Weibo Antarabangsa, Jennie So.

Menurut Jennie, setiap bulan, seramai 497 juta pengguna aktif di Weibo membabitkan pemilik akaun di 190 negara.

Katanya, pada setiap hari pula, Weibo merekodkan jumlah pengguna seramai 200 juta.

“Sebanyak 98 peratus daripada pemilik akaun Weibo merupakan golongan sangat berminat dengan aktiviti perdagangan digital dengan sebanyak 94 peratus melayari akaun Weibo menggunakan telefon pintar,” katanya.

Perkembangan ini menurut Jennie menjadikan Weibo sangat praktikal untuk mempromosikan perkhidmatan dan perniagaan.

Katanya, jumlah pemilik akaun Weibo di luar negara pula kini mencatatkan angka memberangsangkan iaitu mencecah 49 juta orang dengan mereka turut mempunyai pusat operasi di Amerika Syarikat , Britain dan Taiwan.

Berikut merupakan cara mengaktifkan akaun Weibo anda. Selamat mencuba!

  1. Buka aplikasi App Store untuk memuat turun Weibo.
  2.  Daftar dan boleh ikut beberapa langkah untuk melayarinya.
  3.  Tukar kepada versi Bahasa Inggeris
  4.  Klik + pada bahagian kanan di atas dan pilih format untuk memuat naik posting ada.

USAHAWAN AYAM GORENG RM1 RAIH BELASAN RIBU RINGGIT SELEPAS DIGITALKAN PERNIAGAAN

Ketika Mohd Hanif Mahtyudin, 20, mengasaskan HM Wholesale Management & Services, dia sekadar mahu meneruskan legasi keluarganya yang terlibat dalam perniagaan makanan.

Mula menjual ayam goreng RM1 di tepi jalan, anak kelahiran Johor itu kemudian menyedari dia perlu melakukan perubahan untuk memastikan perniagaannya berkembang.

Menyertai kursus anjuran Perbadanan Ekonomi Digital Malaysia (MDEC), pelajar jurusan perakauan itu kemudian didedahkan dengan ilmu pemasaran digital.

 Sejak itu, anak muda ini tidak lagi menoleh ke belakang apabila pendapatannya mencatatkan peningkatan sebanyak 180 peratus.

“ Sebelum ini saya jual ayam goreng secara offline sahaja. Selepas sertai program eUsahawan MDEC, saya menyedari kepentingan platform digital dan mula mengemaskini Facebook, Instagram serta mewujudkann laman sesawang perniagaan.

“ Kini saya tidak hanya mempunyai pelanggan di Johor sahaja kerana sudah terdapat permintaan termasuk dari luar negara. Setiap minggu pula boleh dikatakan agak sibuk kerana perlu menghantar produk ke seluruh negara,” katanya.

Mohd Hanif baru-baru ini terpilih menerima Anugerah Hero Muda sempena  Sidang Kemuncak eUsahawan anjuran MDEC dan Kementerian Belia dan Sukan (KBS).

Sidang berkenaan telah berlangsung meriah dengan dihadiri lebih 2,000 usahawan muda yang berjaya meningkatkan prestasi perniagaan masing-masing selepas menyertai pelbagai kursus anjuran MDEC.

Majlis itu turut menghimpunkan beberapa tokoh termasuk bekas Menteri Kewangan, Tun Daim Zainuddin, Presiden Kumpulan AirAsia (RedBeat Ventures), Ketua Operasi Farm Fresh, Azmi Zainal dan Ketua Pegawai Eksekutif MDEC, Surina Shukri yang berkongsi pengalaman mereka dalam dunia perniagaan dan korporat.

Majlis yang dirasmikan oleh Menteri Belia dan Sukan, Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahman itu menjadi bukti pembangunan usahawan muda dan digital di negara ini mencapai tahap membanggakan apabila seramai 328 948 orang telah dilatih sejak 2015 dengan transaksi jualan mencecah RM668 juta.

Seorang lagi penerima anugerah Hero Muda Usahawan, Siti Zubaidah Zainuddin,34, yang menjalankan perniagaan membekalkan makanan laut dinamakan Laman Segar turut teruja berkongsi cerita tentang kejayaan perniagaannya selepas menyertai kursus eUsahawan anjuran MDEC.

Beroperasi di Melaka, Siti Zubaidah berkata, pada mulanya dia hanya memasarkan produknya di negeri itu sahaja dan hanya bergantung kepada Facebook peribadi sebagai medium promosi.

Bagaimanapun selepas menyedari kursus eUsahawan pada 2017, dia mula didedahkan dengan Google Trends selain kaedah promosi digital lain yang lebih berkesan.

“ Sejak itu pendapatan saya mula meningkat sehingga mencecah lima kali ganda apabila pelanggan di luar Melaka seperti Kelantan, Terengganu dan Kuala Lumpur mula menghubungi untuk mendapatkan produk saya. Kepada usahawan lain, saya menggalakkan anda menyertai kursus-kursus yang disediakan oleh MDEC,” katanya.

Untuk maklumat lanjut berkaitan kursus eUsahawan, layari www.go-ecommerce.my

#BinaBersama #eUsahawan

The Digital Silk Road Series: How Chinese Companies are Leveraging on ASEAN Opportunities

Pt 1: The Next Century Silk Road

Asia’s history includes the colourful story of the Silk Road, which was made up of a crisscrossing in trade and communications routes, covering lands and seas. What I find specially fascinating about this story – where the East is linked to the West – is how Malaysia played the part of a strategic node through the centuries.

When Jack Ma visited Malaysia during the initial announcement of the Digital Free Trade Zone (DFTZ) in 2017, he said: “China is famous for the Silk Road – but without Malaysia, the Silk Road would not have been that successful. The Silk Road, at that time, forced businesses to make products – like tea leaves. These items were so expensive back then and very difficult to preserve. Malaysia provided the solution: tin. By mining tin in Malaysia, it allowed tea to be stored safely and ensure the that it can be sold on the Silk Road. This was what made the Silk Road so powerful.”

Today, a new chapter has opened in the story of the Silk Road. The 21st Century Maritime Silk Road sees ASEAN as a key starting point under China’s ‘Belt & Road Initiative  (BRI)’. By various estimates, this is one of the largest infrastructure and investment mega-projects in history. In relative terms, it covers more than 68 countries, an equivalent tally that represents 65% of the world’s population and 40% of the global GDP as of 2017.

The opportunities are staggering. According to AT Kearney, if the Southeast Asia region was a single country, it would rank #3 in population and #7 in GDP globally. The grouping of these nations, Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) as it is called, has the potential to enter the Top 5 digital economies in the world by 2025.

With its strong digital economy growth and digital innovation ecosystem, Malaysia is powerfully poised to collaborate with Chinese tech companies in building a digital silk road that offers both a win-win cooperation. This was echoed in 2017 by President Xi: “We should pursue innovation-driven development and intensify cooperation in frontier areas, such as the digital economy, artificial intelligence, nanotechnology, and quantum computing. The world must also look at advancing the development of Big Data, Cloud Computing, and creating smart cities. These will all pave the way to establish the Digital Silk Road of the 21st century.”

Malaysia is an important strategic country along the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road. Situated in the centre of Southeast Asia and positioned along the Straits of Malacca, one of the busiest trade routes in the world, gives Malaysia an incomparable advantage in the forging of the 21st Century Digital Silk Road.

Malaysia’s Digital Landscape

In addition to being widely recognised as the ideal gateway to ASEAN, Malaysia is rapidly becoming a destination in itself for business opportunities and growth potential. The BRI has again highlighted Malaysia’s forte as a premier digital destination.

China has historically positioned Malaysia as a gateway to ASEAN, India, and the Middle East.  While the traditional maritime silk road also embraced India and the Middle East routes, Malaysia also enjoys a highly respected position. Besides being recognized as a moderate Muslim country, it also has a multicultural and multilingual heritage that ties back to centuries past. Digital talent in Malaysia is also highly sought after by India and the Middle East.

Where Malaysia used to be a base for shared services, multinationals are now using Malaysia as a hub for catalysing the development of new digital technology and services. As is, venture capitalists have eyed Malaysia both as  the de facto gateway to ASEAN and a fast accelerating digital growth hub.

I see these advances as additional testimonies to Malaysia’s economic transformation. In fact, these are all apparent in how the country is building the new economy. We have put many investments and incentives in place to make sure that Malaysia wins a good slice of the new global marketplace.

Our digital economy contributed 18.3% to the nation’s GDP in 2017, and this figure is expected to reach 21% by 2022, according to analyst firm IDC. Since China’s digital economy contribution reached 34.8% in 2018, this signals much more capacity for digital industry growth in Malaysia!

In these days of digital transformation and rapid disruption, it is more vital than ever to encourage collaboration between countries, companies, and its citizens. It’s a global community now, after all. Since the tabling of Budget 2020, new initiatives are now added onto the ongoing digital transformation agenda. This includes a National Regulatory Sandbox, which is a safe testbed for pilot solutions across different industry vectors. For the moment, this applies to anything related to dronetech, smart cities, and autonomous vehicles.

If anything, with all its new policies in place, Malaysia is rapidly being recognised as an ASEAN testbed and a digital society fuelled by many races and nationalities. These, along with a well-developed and varied infrastructure and solutions, are key to the acceleration and expansion of the digital economy.

(In the next part, this article series will explore what Malaysia had done to carve its place in developing the digital economy for the region)

National Budget 2020: 12 Reasons Why Malaysia is the Preferred Digital Investment Location

October 2019 has proved to be a most exhilarating month for us in MDEC!

Firstly, the National Budget 2020 was tabled at the Parliament on Oct 11th, and secondly, the landmark 30th MSC Implementation Council Meeting (ICM) was held and chaired again for the first time in 16 years by the PM of Malaysia, Tun Mahathir Mohamad on Oct 16th.

Both momentous occasions delivered a key message from the government: Digital Economy is firmly at the forefront of the nation’s Shared Prosperity Vision 2030 (SPV2030), which is a new development blueprint to turbocharge Malaysia’s economic development.

Attendees of the 30th MSC Implementation Council Meeting (ICM)

Making Malaysia the preferred destination for investment

I wish to highlight twelve key initiatives announced in the Budget 2020 that are vital in making Malaysia the preferred investment destination for digital technology and services.

Let’s start with the incentives to attract investment:

  1. The establishment of National Committee on Investment (NCI), jointly chaired by Ministry of Finance (MoF) and Ministry of International Trade and Industry (MITI), to expedite the process in approving foreign and domestic direct investments
  2. To attract Fortune 500 companies and global unicorns, up to RM 1 billion (USD250 million) will be made available in customized packaged investment incentives annually over 5 years
  3. Tax incentives to further promote high value-added activities in Electric & Electronics sector to transition into 5G digital economy and Industry 4.0

Going Seriously Digital in Infrastructure and Applications

With the National Fiberisation and Connectivity Plan (NFCP) as the foundation, the government has also announced major steps to propel Malaysia into the world of 5G, paving the way to higher digital adoption and fueling a robust domestic demand for digitalisation:

  • Matching grant mechanism to provide comprehensive coverage of high speed and quality digital connectivity nationwide, adopting public-private partnership approach, involving total investment of RM21.6 billion (USD5.4 billion).
  • 5G Ecosystem Development Grant amounting to RM50 million (USD12.5 million) to seed technological developments by Malaysian companies to ride the global 5G wave.
  • A contestable matching grant fund totaling RM25 million (USD6.25 million) to spur more pilot projects on digital applications such as drone delivery, autonomous vehicles, blockchain technology, other products and services that leverage on Malaysia’s investments in fiber optics and 5G infrastructure.
  • Smart Automation matching grants worth RM550 million (USD 137.5 million) for manufacturing and services companies to automate business processes.
  • 14 Digital Enhancement Centers to be built to facilitate access to financing and capacity building for businesses, specifically for SMEs, in line with Industry Revolution 4.0 (IR4.0); with RM70 million (USD17.5 million) earmarked for MDEC for this purpose.

Building Digital Malaysians

Economist Alfred Marshall, once said, “the most valuable of all capital is that invested in human beings.” Echoing this sentiment, the government is steadfast in investing to build digital Malaysians:

  • The introduction of Digital Social Responsibility concept as an initiative to contribute to digital economic development while improving digital skills of future workforce with initiatives such as technology scholarships, training & upskilling for digital skills for communities in need that are tax deductible.
  • An allocation of RM450 million (USD112.5 million) to implement a onetime RM30 digital stimulus to qualified Malaysians to increase the number of Malaysians, merchants, and SMEs to use e-wallets.
  • RM11 million allocated to inculcate Science, Technology & Innovation culture and encouraging more students in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM).
  • RM20 million (USD 5 million) is also apportioned to match with RM20 million from Human Resource Development Fund (HRDF) towards encouraging working adults to undertake professional certification exams in fields relating to IR4.0.

(MYR 1 = USD 0.25)

Creating a Digital Utopia

To complement the National Budget 2020, two major initiatives were announced at the 30th MSC ICM to further boost Malaysia’s digital economy:

  • A Global Testbed initiative to attract next-gen emerging technologies to innovate in Malaysia, specifically in the fintech, blockchain, and drone sectors by attracting global digital talents and interest from investors.

DroneTech has been identified to be the Global Testbed pilot. To support this initiative, the government will be easing the work visa process for key talent in emerging technologies via a green lane facility, as well as other forms of visas such as the Digital Freelancer Pass.

  • A new Digital Talent Development Strategy Framework, designed to mobilise and coordinate the end-to-end nurturing of Malaysia’s tech talent both locally and on the international stage, is also proposed to address the growing demand for a digital-savvy workforce.

All the above signifies that Malaysia is investing heavily in building and enhancing the digital innovation ecosystem and adoption, a proof that we’re going seriously digital. It is small wonder that Malaysia’s digital economy’s growth has been outpacing the overall national economy’s growth in recent years, inarguably making us well poised towards the digital-first economy.

As a matter of fact, IMD favorably ranked Malaysia as number 2 in South East Asia in terms of future readiness in its World Digital Competitiveness Ranking 2019. Similarly, AT Kearney introduced digital resonance in its Global Services Location Index 2019 report, and Malaysia scored second highest among ASEAN economies in this new category.

Exciting Times Ahead

Opportunities abound as we speed towards the year 2020 and beyond.  

As the lead agency tasked in driving Malaysia’s digital economy forward, the excitement levels within MDEC are rising rapidly! And as the head of MDEC’s Investment team, entrusted to attract direct investments to Malaysia’s digital economy, I speak for all of us in the team that we are absolutely thrilled to work hand in hand with all industry stakeholders in ensuring the national digital economy agenda a continuous success.

We invite you, Mr. and Mdm. Investors, to come to Malaysia, capitalise the opportunities that we offer, and grow your digital business and operations from here, the heart of Digital ASEAN.

#SeriouslyDigital
#MalaysiaHeartofDigitalASEAN

Hew Wee Choong is the Vice President for Investment & Industry Development, at Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC)

Inclusivity: The Real Value of #SeriouslyDigital

The MDEC team.

Dear reader,

In case you hadn’t noticed, we at MDEC put out lots of energy and made plenty of noise about going #SeriouslyDigital—the overarching theme we created as part of a giant effort to boost adoption and digital literacy to every corner of Malaysian society.

So undoubtedly you’ve seen the #SeriouslyDigital tag on social media that was doing the rounds over June and July, especially spiking during the major digital events that we’ve been heavily involved in over that period—Malaysia Tech Week 2019, Wild Digital, and Beyond Paradigm Summit among a host of many other satellite events.

To recap, #SeriouslyDigital came to life at Malaysia Tech Week 2019 (or MTW19). The weeklong event had 2,000 individuals from around the world attending 33 unique events in 20 locations around Kuala Lumpur, with 170 speakers coming down to share their insights and key lessons on things like Industry 4.0, dronetech, Islamic fintech, government policies, and more.

The reception for MTW19 saw 2,000 attendees, a number much better than we anticipated.

Then along came Wild Digital organised by the Catcha Group and supported by MDEC. It had plenty to offer for our startups and revealed just how much of an impact our local players are making globally.

The Beyond Paradigm Summit 2019 hosted by Serba Dinamik showcased Malaysia’s impressive prowess in AI and data science, with the highlight being Sofia The Robot who on a panel discussion with Tun Mahathir!

Also, there were various other happenings that took place along the way including the NASA Moonshot event at the Penang Science Cluster andthe conclusion of the Kre8tif! @ School pilot programme.

In a nutshell, every event that took place over June and July presented us with constructive insight on the path forward, and each one served to highlight the many opportunities on offer for Malaysian entrepreneurs and general public to get immersed in our vibrant digital economy.

The positive audience reception and support we received at these events (especially MTW19) provided us a sure sign of a community eager to embrace the inevitable wave of digital transformation.

The discussion on Industry 4.0 was one of the highlights, and something for all of us to ponder on moving into the second half of 2019.

These events were also the perfect way to showcase new and emerging technologies to our very own government participants and share with them how digital is in everything we do. Indeed, seeing is believing!

Of course, it’s also going to be especially exciting to see how dronetech will evolve to fit into our daily routines.

Ultimately, our team have taken the learnings and proof of concepts from these events as a victory not only for already existing stakeholders, but also for all those still to come into the fold.

As we have said many times at MDEC, Malaysia’s digital transformation has to be thoroughly inclusive. That means extending our efforts to anyone and everyone that can stand to benefit from the introduction of digital technology not just into their daily lives, but routines.

Wild Digital gave our Digital Ninjas an invaluable opportunity to put their out-of-the-box thinking on display for giants of the tech industry to witness.

This includes families living in rural communities that could possibly make use of the eRezeki programme for extra income, owners of small fisheries who can leverage big data and AI to increase their yield, women needing employment who can apply for the new Empowering Women in Cyber Risk Management Programme, and special-needs students that can gain skills from the MyDigitalMaker initiative. And just are just a few examples—there are many more.

It’s probably true that the path from idea to reality is fraught with challenges and naysayers, but we feel that with all of these exciting developments in digital, there exists a real opportunity for us to present a convincing case to the doubting Thomases that our work is bearing fruit.

As our CEO Surina Shukri says: our success should be measured by the amount of people we inspire along the way, and the results should benefit as many as possible, in order to make believers of as many as possible.

The Kre8tif! @ School pilot programme was a golden chance provided to differently-abled schoolkids to learn the art of 3D content creation.

So looking ahead, our various divisions at MDEC will be hard at work pushing out more inclusive programmes such as LEVEL UP KL, the AI & Big Data week, the #mydigitalmaker fair, and the Kre8tif! Conference—inspiring and exciting events that’ll help us dial up the momentum we’ve built up these past few months.

In conjunction with these events, we invite you to follow our journey and hear from our senior leaders as they share their thoughts, insights, and learnings right here on our official blog.

And while you’re at it, we also invite you to browse our revamped website to discover new opportunities and see where you fit into the bigger #SeriouslyDigital picture. We’re sure that wherever you come from, there’s a something at MDEC that’s right for you.

Thanks for reading, and welcome aboard!

Prime Minister, Tun Dr. Mahathir bin Mohamad, was impressed and ‘tongue-tied’ when he met Sophia the ‘social humanoid’ robot during the #SeriouslyDigital month campaign.
(Pic credit: TheStar)

Why investors are bullish on Malaysia’s Digital Economy

Part 2

Malaysia has a rich history as a multinational hub for traders. The Straits of Malacca has long been favoured as a major route connecting Asia, Europe and the Middle East. Today, Malaysia has evolved to being a hub of highly skilled talent, thriving within a vibrant business ecosystem founded on world-class infrastructure.

Opportunities for everyone

As the world moves rapidly into the 4th Industrial Revolution (IR4.0), MDEC is ready and fully focused on leading Malaysia’s digital economy forward by accelerating:

  1. Formulation of policies and coordination of agencies to enable success
  2. Development of future proof workforce to grow the Digital Economy eco-system
  3. Creation of global champions to increase contribution from the Digital Economy to GDP

It case you missed it, Malaysia has gone #SeriouslyDigital with:

  • Cumulative Total Investment of RM472 billion from the MSC (1996 – 2018)
  • Export sales worth RM166 billion
  • More importantly, the MSC creating a total of 182,538 jobs.

We have made significant efforts to establish the right ecosystem to foster wide digital entrepreneurship.

My thoughts here will touch on just a few illustrations of recent and upcoming opportunities that have been built through collaboration; my MDEC colleagues will also be touching on many more initiatives across different parts of the digital economy as we move further into the year.

Just a few examples:

  • Ninety (90)% of future jobs will require some level of digital literacy. The MyDigitalMaker movement has so far seen 450,000 students participating in a national public-private-academia initiative to encourage Malaysian youth to become digital producers and not just digital consumers.
  • Inclusivity — inspiring everyone to take their place in the digital world – includes initiatives such as eRezeki, which empower Malaysians to start generating online income via platforms set up to match their respective skills with digital work. More than 210,000 participants have been trained with more than 110,00 of these reporting additional income amounting to a total of more than RM220 million reported.
  • An initiative to mainstream digital entrepreneurs (eUsahawan) has so far trained 65,000 participants. More than 65,000 have reported additional sales, amounting to a total of more than RM370 million sales reported. Some individual success stories can be found at the site.
  • The Digital Free Trade Zone (DFTZ) is a national initiative to drive Malaysia’s cross border eCommerce through Digitalisation, by focusing on driving SME export through various eCommerce players. Another key outcome of DFTZ is to position Malaysia as Regional efulfilment hub.

And finally, coming back to the theme of investment: Investors come from many countries to Malaysia. Just one example — the USA is one of the top investors in MSC Malaysia, accounting for 10% of total investments as 132 American companies have so far been awarded MSC status, bringing in a total cumulative investment of RM30 billion from this investment channel alone.

However, let’s not forget that investment also begins at home. Let’s invest in our digital economy — invest some of our energy, abilities and desires – to grow and enrich our families and ourselves.

While digital transformation and digital economy may appear to be high-level taglines, digital adoption simplified is about finding out the best-use of digital tools and solutions to help build your place and base in this fast-growing and evolving new world.

As an agency under the Ministry of Communications and Multimedia, MDEC remains committed to working closely with all levels of Government to speed the building and development of our digital economy as Malaysia accelerates into a leading Digital Nation.

#DigitalMalaysiaForward   #LetsBuildTogether

Dato’ Ng Wan Peng, Chief Operating Officer

Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC)

The long and winding road to realise DICE

Ever watched Stranger things on Netflix? Whenever I watched this series and with all its sci-fi trappings, I can’t help but to reminisce my time growing up in the 80s. I spent some of my time in Madison, Wisconsin, a cold place in the north of the USA similar to Hawkins, Indiana.

I followed my father who had a chance to continue his studies to complete his PhD at the university there.  I grew up with in Arcades, read X-men comics and enjoyed Transformers the movie (even cried buckets when my hero Optimus Prime died). These influences still continue to pepper my thoughts as I grow in these years.

Never would I have thought that my journey would land me here.

In 1996 when I returned home to Malaysia, I wasn’t sure where I was headed. All I knew was getting a job.  I was told of a new initiative – and project that the government was embarking on. The Multimedia Super Corridor and the company that was pushing it forward – the Multimedia Development Corporation or MDC.

My early journey in MDC included sleeping in the cold outside the door of the first International Advisory Panel in Stanford (was tired of all the jet lag then). I was tasked to develop one of the 7 flagship applications – the Borderless marketing and Worldwide Manufacturing Web. I also built the first few websites of the MSC and MDC. Creativity was always something that inspired me.

Then I had the opportunity to learn from the process of creating Saladin. It was one of the first large scale animation projects that the country would undertake. I wasn’t part of the team then, but the original team worked beside our IT team and I immersed and listened to what they did.

One day, the Executive Chairman of MDC then, Arwah Tan Sri Othman Yeop called me and colleague of mine to his office and asked if I could be interested to manage the first VR centre in Malaysia. Powered by SGI, this became the premier VR center for the region. This was the starting point for me to be formally part of the CMC team and with that – the journey of into what will become of my lifelong passion.

VR uses real/time engines – the same that powers most 3D games then on consoles like the PlayStation and Dreamcast. As technology pushed forward, 3D cards became available for consumers. We even worked on the Virtual Malacca walkthrough- which was developed by VisualExtreme. We had students by the droves come into our centre and get enraptured by the awe of travelling back to the 1500s. (Fun fact- to those whose seen it – you might have seen the Saladin characters that peppered the virtual space)

This led to the establishment of the CADC of which we had a team that came together from the original Saladin team. Then the true team that made Saladin into the Emmy-award nominated co-production with the renowned al Jazeera’s Children’s Channel was formed. Saladin grew from a trailer we made with Silverant to showcase what our best animation companies could do. That trailer captured the minds of everyone who saw it and also the international community. That one day, a call from the GM of AJC to our producer startled us. He wished to fly us to Qatar and wanted to co-produce with us. As they say, the rest is amazing history.

Dozens of our great animations were created then with Dato Kamil helming our division and our team fueling the industry. Upin & Ipin, Kung Fu Chicken (Chuck Chicken now), BoBoiBoy, Awang Khenit, Didi & Friends, Ejen Ali and so many more have initiated under MDEC’s support.

I then decided to take up an opportunity to be part of industry. I heard that Rhythm and Hues Malaysia – a world-class VFX house – was growing in Cyberjaya. It was also going to work on the Life of Pi, one of my most favorite books. I left the company after 14 years to the hectic life of production. And what an experience it was. It was also one of the toughest points of the journey.

R&H was the home of brilliant artists who created one of the most wondrous things we see on screen. Tirelessly hundreds of talented VFX artists work in many stages to provide the magic to the biggest box office films. What’s more amazing of that over 1000 staff of R&H we had at the peak, almost 120 of them were based in Cyberjaya. We are ever so grateful to the experienced brothers we had from both LA and India who came to uplift our local talent. We had hundreds of apprentices come through our office from around MALAYSIA. Going through many of our programs to train the new breed of VFX artists, R&H believed in Malaysia and our talent pool – and they were not disappointed.

Unfortunately, after celebrating our 25 years of magic, the global business became too competitive and it brought us to our knees.

Many Malaysians would not know that we had great young talents from all over Malaysia who worked on 22 Hollywood films from Cyberjaya, movies like Yogi Bear, Alvin & the Chipmunks, X-men First Class and Snow White and the Huntsman among others.

In 2013, Malaysia was part of the VFX Oscar race for 2 movies – the Life of Pi and Snow White and the Huntsman. We had many of our artists who contributed to both these films and we were all so proud that we Malaysians could do it and compete on the same level as the talents from large global companies.

As we celebrated our win with Life of Pi that day, we also were beset with the news that our company was in dire straits. The business was tough and we were experiencing the downturn. As management, we scrambled every day to look for opportunities to keep going. We had so many talented artists all over the world – including that 120 in Malaysia. It was one of the darkest times for me and the team. When there was some light at the end of the tunnel – it flickered and became dark again. It happened a few times until finally R&H was acquired, but not after major downsizing. As the last few had left, I joined the job market. Until today I remember talking to each and every artist under my care, and the tears that flowed from their eyes. I promised myself that what I would do in the future will matter for these talented artists one day. And this journey was that pit stop that reminded me how far we still need to go. How strong we all need to be to persevere.

After a year outside doing some consultancy and learning a whole lot about the AAA games business, an opportunity came up to rejoin my team in MDEC. This time to lead this great experienced crew to new heights.

And at the end of 2014, the journey in MDEC to build our Digital Creative Content industry just went into overdrive. We pushed out multiple programs and celebrated all our achievements. We kept on educating and creating awareness of the industry within Malaysia and on the global stage. We haven’t let up since.

On the 9th of August 2019, we have collectively come to another point in our journey together. Something the industry deserves, something that will bring together both the public sector and industry and chart the next stage of growth.

YB Gobind Singh Deo, Minister of Multimedia and Communications Malaysia, announced the next evolution of our way forward for the Industry – a policy known as the Digital Content Ecosystem Policy or DICE. The industry and stakeholder engagements and consultations will be the prelude to eventual policy formulation. The vision is to create a digital content ecosystem that is conducive, inclusive and competitive. That is my promise.

YB Gobind Singh Deo, Minister of Multimedia and Communications Malaysia, announcing the DICE policy at the Level Up KL Media Announcement recently.

DICE is the culmination of many years of MDEC’s collaborations, research and experience in developing and promoting the Digital Creative Content Industry. The announcement last week was to initiate the engagement with public and industry stakeholders who are involved and have vested interest to see our Malaysian Digital Creative Content Industry continue its leadership in the region.  It aims to ensure that our industry will have a productive and capable talent pool, a strong industry with global achievements, prolific output of commercial IP and the awareness and push of Malaysia as a regional hub. Several initiatives will be put forward for consideration and will be the basis to grow the industry even further.

I humbly request this – if anyone of you passionately desires to accelerate the growth and success of our amazing industry and help make its mark globally , this is the time to say your thoughts or shout and let it all out.

We will have platforms for you to engage us. In the meantime, email me with your suggestions. I’ll put it on the net for us to talk and figure out how we can push this industry to the stratosphere. This is the time my friends and together let’s make our mark.

DICE will be our Neverending Story.

#DigitalMalaysiaForward #LetsBuildTogether

– Hasnul Hadi Samsudin is the Vice President of Digital Creative Content, at Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC)

© 2017 Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation Sdn Bhd (389346-D). All rights reserved.