Next week, the international roadshow for MaGIC’s (Malaysian Global Innovation & Creativity Centre) ASEAN Track Acceleration Program would be coming to an end. The laudable initiative for grooming startups is having its second installment this May. You may even be wrapping your application up. But if you’ve not heard, MaGIC has another ASEAN-wide initiative for startups called ACE.
ACE, or ASEAN Centre of Entrepreneurship, is a support system meant to provide key services to startups to help them grow their businesses regionally. Launched in November at the recent ASEAN Leadership Summit, it’s the first platform of its kind in the region.
What it basically means is this: Say you have a scalable startup in Singapore, and are looking to expand into Malaysia. If you reach out to ACE, they will help you set your business up in the country in a proper and smooth process.
Comprehensive services are provided in these areas, via shared services with a list of partners:
- Company incorporation
- Obtaining MSC status
- Legal consultation
- Intellectual property registration
- Visa applications for foreign talent
- Tax and accountings
- Banking facilities
Assistance in these areas are needful, because going cross-border is not easy! Not if you don’t know the local policies or have little to no connections. For example, if you want to set up an account in Malaysia, you’d need a reference from a local individual or company. ACE can help you with that.
One good point with this platform is eligibility. You can use its services regardless of the stage of your startup’s growth. This is contrary to the acceleration program which has specific requirements.
The initiative is not bound to Malaysia alone. If you wish to set up shop in any of the other ASEAN nation, connections can be made with local counterparts, such as Impact HUB, Hub IT, and A Space. These will provide similar services.
By providing this support system, ACE and in effect MaGIC hope to make their vision of a strong ASEAN startup community ecosystem a reality.
So startups, take note. Perhaps you might find the acceleration program not to be the perfect fit for you. But with ACE, your dream of global expansion doesn’t have to remain a dream.