Dash is the founder of StartupMalaysia.org. A graduate from the University of Cambridge, Dash has a natural aptitude and passion for entrepreneurship. He is a serial entrepreneur who has successfully started and sold several businesses. His talents and passion for business and entrepreneurship is well noted as he has been leading the Global Entrepreneur Week movement in Malaysia consecutively as its host for the past 3 years and he is a fellow of the U.S. government’s prestigious International Visitor Leadership Program. Recently, Dash has been appointed the director of the Founder Institute, the world’s largest accelerator group.

Dash speaks to us today about the work he does at StartupMalaysia and his insights on entrepreneurship, a field in which he has gained notoriety in.

Dash tell us about StartupMalaysia and what you guys do.

We are a kind of a launchpad or a ‘accelerator plus” comprising of a community of like minded people/organizations who come together to find exciting ways to inspire people to launch and grow scalable startups that are truly meaningful and enduring.
Our ultimate ‘customer’ is a person who says, I want to startup or take my startup to the next level, where do I go and what should I do?
Our right partner is someone who has the idea, resources they are willing to commit to this end – the creation of a fundable startup.

What led you to create StartupMalaysia?

I am personally inspired to help entrepreneurs succeed, achieve their vision and be awesome. So I wanted to build a platform to connect Malaysian entrepreneurs to international entrepreneurs.I wanted to build this bridge. So I founded StartupMalaysia.

On that note, how do you find the entrepreneurial scene in Malaysia?

It is very vibrant and the number of quality startups are slowly increasing. We need more but it be something that will happen over time not over night. The Malaysian government is extremely supportive of entrepreneurs and we may be one of the only few countries where the government takes an interest in funding the seed stage . Cradle Fund is tasked to fund seed stage tech startups. Other organizations like MDEC and SME are also supporting startups in their own ways.

Would you say that startups are more prevalent in Malaysia in recent years?

Startups are definitely growing in numbers in Malaysia. Young people are becoming more and more entrepreneurial these days. With the 4 billionth person going online, the cost of starting a startup dropping exponentially, this is the best time to be a startup.

So tell us about the process of launching StartupMalaysia.

StartupMalaysia.org is itself a startup. The process of setting up a startup is to find customer validation to define clearly the problem we can solve for our customers, who are in this case startup entrepreneurs. The next challenge is to find a business model to remain sustainable. I believe we have surmounted both.


What are some interesting startups you have encountered in your work?

Well I run an accelerator in Australia and work with startups all over the world. The most interesting things I have seen are not just the startup themselves but the energy of the founders behind these startups. They are full of enthusiasm and believe that they can change the world. This is what amazes me.

What do you think are the common challenges Malaysian entrepreneurs face?

The biggest challenge is to come up with an awesome idea that is not ‘me too’. The second challenge is to find a co-founder who can compliment your skills to help you build your startup. The third challenge is to build a sustainable mode, obtain customer validation and then to convince the funders to invest in you and finally to scale the venture. All these are common challenges to any entrepreneur anywhere. The unique challenge in Malaysia maybe for entrepreneurs to think big enough.

In your opinion, what is needed to achieve success as an entrepreneur?

I think its a combination of factors. An open mind, the willingness to dream big and to work hard and push oneself to the limit. Also the ability to build a team, to be savvy enough not to run out of money, ability to raise funding and probably most importantly a mind that is capable of shifting gears.

Are you working on anything exciting at the moment?

Yes. I have another startup called D-Code.Co. It is a venture that helps kids learn how to code. That is quite exciting. Other than that, I am working on StartupMalaysia, working on creating a large community backed back many entrepreneurs who can support on another.

Should we be excited about any particular industry or sector at the moment?

Well I am not in other industries, so I can’t advise generally. However, I am quite aware of the tech sector and to me this sector is going to be exciting no matter what the economic situation is going to be. The young ones involved in this sector are redefining entrepreneurship and turning economic concepts on its head.


Connect with Dash and StartupMalaysia today:
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Startupmalaysiaorg/379826472133277
Website: http://www.startupmalaysia.org/
Email: [email protected]


Recently Published

Key Takeaways: The phenomenon of some fireflies’ flash synchrony has puzzled scientists for over a century. The phenomenon piqued the curiosity of many, including mathematicians Daniel Abrams and Steven Strogatz, who named it “chimera” In Greek mythology, the Chimera was a hybrid monster made of parts of incongruous animals – so a fitting name for […]

Top Picks

Key Takeaways: Albert Einstein’s theory of general relativity has been remarkably successful in describing the gravity of stars and planets. However, gaps in our understanding start to appear when we try to apply it to extremely small distances, where the laws of quantum mechanics operate. A new study, published in Nature Astronomy, has now tested […]
Key Takeaways: Digital money is a form of currency that uses computer networks to make payments. It is not the digital nature of cryptocurrencies that differentiate them from digital money, but how they ensure the ownership of digital property that mark them as transformational. The Counter Currency Laboratory, a new initiative based in the Department […]
Key Takeaways: For many people, Buddhism appears to be uniquely compatible with modern lifestyles and world views. Buddhist mindfulness has influenced many schools of contemporary psychology. Buddhist philosophy embraces constant change and the inherent impermanence of all things. The 19th century Burmese monk Ledi Sayadawtravelled the nation teaching meditation and founding study groups. The forms […]
Key Takeaways: Elon Musk proposed a range of controversial changes to the Twitter platform. One of the ideas was to charge US$8 a month to obtain a verified status. The paid verification change has already been rolled out in several countries, including Australia, under the Twitter Blue subscription service. Musk’s proposal is not only misguided […]


I highly recommend reading the McKinsey Global Institute’s new report, “Reskilling China: Transforming The World’s Largest Workforce Into Lifelong Learners”, which focuses on the country’s biggest employment challenge, re-training its workforce and the adoption of practices such as lifelong learning to address the growing digital transformation of its productive fabric. How to transform the country […]

Join our Newsletter

Get our monthly recap with the latest news, articles and resources.

Latest Titles


Welcome to Empirics

We are glad you have decided to join our mission of gathering the collective knowledge of Asia!
Join Empirics