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November 2016





Malaysian Invasion


Every industry has a digital disruptor. Let’s make it you.

HITACHI is a trademark or registered trademark of Hitachi, Ltd.

Like most industries, yours is under pressure to transform due to new competition from digital disruptors. The only way to get the benefits of digital transformation is with the right data strategy.

No one knows data like Hitachi Data Systems. How can we help you accelerate your digital transformation?

Hitachi’s end-to-end solution, from server and storage to backup, has fundamentally transformed our customer service platform, enabling us to increase customer loyalty with new levels of efficiency, responsiveness and reliability. We are confident that this improved customer experience will help create even more business opportunities and drive new revenue growth in the future. Malcolm Chiu, CIO, QNET


HELLO AND WELCOME to the very first issue of Business Review Asia, We kick off this exciting new venture with an exclusive interview with Malaysian pop star turned entrepreneur Jason Lo. He recounts unique perspectives from the worlds of business and music and how the two experiences have shaped his growth. We also explore the effects that digital disruption is having on the region – with companies such as Airbnb and Alibaba transforming how business interacts with customers all the time, it is an exciting and not to mention unpredictable time for companies both large and small. Keeping with the spirit of youthful innovation, we take a look at the top 10 young CEOs in Asia and examine the factors that have led to their success. We also profile a number of leading companies operating in the region through a number of exclusive interviews. From everyone at Business Review Asia, we hope you find the articles interesting and thought-provoking.

Enjoy the issue.

Nye Longman Editor Nye.Longman@bizclikmedia.com






Malaysian Invasion


Disruption in Asia 4

November 2016

24 T O P 10

Young CEOs in Asia









Bank Islam Brunei Darussalam Technology


Farrer Park Hospital Healthcare

Ooredoo Myanmar




CEO Jeff Carvell Energy

Malaysian Invasion



IT’S GOING TO take more than a single stroke of genius to be accurately labelled an ‘entrepreneur’ in 2016. At this point in human history, we’ve already invented robots which diagnose cancer and drones that can deliver pizza. To be an inventor, you’ve got to be an innovator. And to stand out from the herd of hackers and creatives, you need to have a vision for the future. How are we going to use augmented reality to enhance our lives? Are we going to colonise Mars? Can we keep AI from turning on us? Jason Lo, CEO of Tune Talk, Malaysia’s largest mobile prepaid MVNO service provider, is one of this new breed of entrepreneur. As it stands, he doesn’t have all the answers — but he’s willing to tackle the big questions. And his approach is simple: ditch your ego at the door, throw out the rule book and forget everything you think you know about the 9 to 5 grind. Lo is equal parts telco executive, entertainment mogul and human

behaviourist — and in conversation each persona fights to get a word in edgeways. When I dial his office line on a Thursday afternoon, I’m told that he’s not in. The woman who picked up the phone politely requests that I give him a call on his mobile, with the caveat that he could be out riding his bike. At this point, I know this isn’t going to be a chat about the phenomenal costs of installing fibre optic cabling. It’s JLo the CEO that answers my call. And, for a moment, he’s ready to talk strategy. “We don’t have KPIs,” Lo insists. He believes that using success metrics like these throttles creativity.  “KPIs are completely destructive to innovation. They destroy innovative thinking.”

So how does not having KPIs affect your company culture? “We don’t have Monday head of department meetings either,” he says. “As CEO, I am the custodian of the


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Jason Lo


brand as well as corporate culture. And after watching every episode of Star Trek at university, I’m a firm believer that Jean-Luc Picard knew to how to motivate his crew by empowering them...like 94 percent of the time.”


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Lo isn’t one to speak in tech jargon or business acronyms, probably because he launched his career from behind a mixing desk and not a boardroom table. After earning a bachelor of science in accounting from the University of Hull and a Master’s in business administration from Webster University’s London campus, Lo returned to his native Malaysia to pursue his first passion: music. It was during his years in the industry that he encountered then-Warner Music executive Tony Fernandes. Lo had released three albums, hosted a talk show, produced a reality show and started his own record label by the time Fernandes, now the founder of Tune Group, asked him to come on board as CEO of Tune Talk in late 2007. On paper, the music business and the telecommunications sector might not have a lot in common, but Lo’s experiences in entertainment left him prepared to shake up every sphere he touches.

How is being a CEO similar to being a rock star? “To be in the music business, or to try and be a ‘rock star’ one has to start at the beginning, with a blank piece of paper, and actually pen a song,” Lo says. Of course, learning an instrument goes hand-in-hand with the songwriting process, but a budding chart-topper has got to find bandmates to bring his creation to life. “Now we find our musician in the realm of human resource management, trying to bring together a group of individuals and bring them all up to par utilizing attributes of leadership and people skills,” Lo says. He’s fully committed to the analogy. However, music isn’t a cheap hobby,

“KPIs are completely destructive to innovation. They destroy innovative thinking”

especially not for the group hoping to hit the proverbial ‘big time’. Much like being a CEO, Lo stresses that building a band requires some serious organisation and financial acumen. “They have to make sure bookings are made and guitar strings are purchased,” he says. Once a satisfactory demo has been recorded — and Lo assures me this process will take trial and error — the band needs to start marketing its offering. And maybe, if they get lucky, one of the radio stations that they sent their record to will start playing it. Jackpot? Well, it’s not quite that easy. “Although there is a chance for any musician to succeed, it is more



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than likely they fail multiple times,” Lo says. However, the group will have picked up its fair share of entrepreneurial skills on its journey. “If you can battle the music industry, with all its transformational change — from CDs to Napster, to the collapse labels and the creation of apps with the capabilities of Abbey Road studios — I believe musicians will be all the better for it.” Lo experienced significant disruption firsthand during his time in the music industry. He recalls that, within the space of a year, traditional musical equipment was replaced by digital audio workstations like Logic and ProTools. But instead of mourning his lost mixing desks, Lo decided to embrace the digital age — and this kind of forward momentum has characterised his tenure at Tune Talk. “What does it take to negotiate a balance between innovation and stagnation? With the speed technology is moving, it must be tough to anticipate what the ‘next big thing’ will be.”

“If you look at Samsung, the disaster of the Note 7 is known now, and that’s a $17 billion problem that they have,” says Lo. The state of the smartphone market is one of his favourite topics, and one that allows him to wax poetic on what he calls HHB — human habitual behaviour. “It’s a perfect storm for Google to come out with its next phone, because you’ve also got Apple with wireless headphones, which no one seems to like,” he continues. Trends drive consumption in the tech sector. If a new smartphone comes equipped with an insanely high-res camera or a lightning fast processor, the masses will want it in the palms of their hands. Still, as progressive as he is, Lo is wary of bandwagon jumping. “Don’t be so quick to judge and condemn,” he cautions. “I am still a loyal Blackberry user because they are incredibly innovative. They still have billions of dollars, they still have some of the most creative minds in the world.”


Lo vows to stay humble in the knowledge that “anyone can go right or wrong” in business. “Look at the iPhone 7 wireless headphones,” he says. “HHB is the guiding principle for me personally, and I reckon that one was a bit of a ‘say whuuuut?’. But hey, I could be wrong...on occasion.”

Does HHB play into your customer service model? How do you try and connect with the average ‘man on street’? Lo recalls an instance in which an elderly lady called Tune Talk’s customer care department and demanded to talk to the company’s CEO. After insisting that she wouldn’t speak to anyone but the chief exec, Lo told his team to put the call through to him. The woman complained that her Tune Talk service was inadequate


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and demanded that Lo come to her home himself to address the situation. He was there by 7pm. “There are like 14 Indian aunties sitting around playing gin rummy or something,” he says of the scene on arrival. “I very gladly signed them all up and they fed me.” This is the epitome of Lo’s approach to business, and the core of his strategy for future development. “If you’re a CEO in this day and age, you’ve got to be contactable,” he says. And he isn’t shy about engaging with fans, critics or any one of his 80k Twitter followers. “You’ve got to get on the ground like that. It really helps identify what the kids are doing.” The way Lo sees it, “the kids” are key stakeholders in Tune Talk’s business. In typical JLo style, the company also shies away from return

on investment (ROI) metrics. “Return on investment is not a justification to not spend on branding or community building,” he explains. “We changed our ROIs to ROYs (retain our youth), as they are now the trendsetters and key influencers in this industry.”

What are you gonna do to retain the youth market, then? “We have to give the customers what they want,” he says, slipping back into CEO mode, if only for a moment. “They want porn, right?”


Disruption in Asia Business Review Asia reports on what the digital revolution means for the region’s innovative corporations

Wr it te n by: A LI CE YOU N G

NEW TECHNOLOGY CONTINUES to transform the global markets at an unprecedented rate. The digital advancements of the last 25 years have strengthened and accelerated, and entire industries have changed, adapted, or fallen. Competitors have materialised from unexpected corners. Banks face pressure from online lenders. Hotels face competition from Airbnb. And conventional shopping malls are emptying out and converting to office space as a result of e-commerce. The digital revolution and emerging technologies have disrupted every industry. In Asia, this disruption has been significantly critical. The region overall represents one of the fastest growing areas across the globe, and digital disruption impacts consumer behaviour in how they purchase goods and services, the advertising and media consumed, entertainment, and social networking. These challenges are unique in Asia. As the world’s most populous region, it offers the most potentially profitable consumer opportunity. In addition, rather than being early adopters or innovators, Asian consumers seem to lead 18

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the revolution that digitisation empowers. Asia represents the region in which enterprises look to the future. The normal rules surrounding consumer engagement are changing in Asia thanks to three digital trends. These are:

• The rise of mobile devices • T he rise of social media networks • The rise of online commerce Just as important, these trends are merging with each other to produce even more powerful disruptions. For instance, e-commerce is transforming into m-commerce (mobile), which is changing into s-commerce (social). As these trends alter the economic landscape in Asia, the area is developing into a crucible of digital innovation. In fact, Asia represents the fastest expanding consumer market in the world, with increasing adoption of new technology and thriving digital innovation. Asia is now shaping the economies of the world. These trends, the rise of mobile

“E-commerce is transforming into m-commerce (mobile), which is changing into s-commerce (social)�


devices, social media networking, and e-commerce, are altering industries around the world; however, the economic landscape of Asia makes the area especially important in understanding the forthcoming economy of connected consumers. Asia’s sheer scale is worth noting. The region represented 57 percent of the world’s population in 2014, 58 percent of all mobile phone subscriptions, and 54 percent of internet users. In addition, countries in Asia overall represent the fastest expanding regional economy globally. In addition, the region accounted for over 25 percent of global private consumption, but is projected to reach over 30 percent by 2019. Retail sales are projected to increase by over 4.5 percent per year over the next five years, versus a worldwide average of 3 percent. The region is crucial for more than just growth rates and scale. An increasing number of enterprise-level technology companies call Asia their home base. For instance, smartphone producers from Asia, such as Sony, 20

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Xiaomi, and Samsung, represent nearly 70 percent of worldwide sales. In addition, approximately 33 percent of 2.3 million app developers are based in Asia. China’s Alibaba holds more market value than Amazon.com in the United States. Considering these elements together, it is obvious that Asia will have an increasingly pivotal role in shaping the methods by which companies use technology

platforms to connect with consumers. Certainly, many consumers in Asia may not be as wealthy than counterparts in North America or Europe; however, digital disruption has occurred despite this. Instead the digital revolution may be encouraging the resulting innovation, proving the old axiom, “necessity is the mother of invention”. For instance, many countries have skipped the early

“Only 20 percent of adults in Indonesia hold a bank account, although close to 50 percent have a Facebook profile”

stages of digital disruption, such as rejecting landlines and directly embracing mobile technology. Presuming lower incomes and lower financial inclusion as an obstacle to e-commerce is proving to be false. For instance, only 20 percent of adults in Indonesia hold a bank account, although close to 50 percent have a Facebook profile. Innovation overcomes these obstacles. Some examples include mobile phone companies offering payment services through their billing capabilities, by including e-commerce purchases to the bills of post-paid consumers, or by using phone credits to purchase goods and services for pre-paid consumers. In addition, in situations in which consumers have not developed the confidence to make advance online purchases, e-commerce sites have adopted cash-on-delivery (COD) services in countries like 21


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Indonesia and India. In Vietnam, approximately 80 percent of sales for Zalora are COD.

Technology and necessity drive innovation Digital disruption has brought about unprecedented change to marketing as well. Businesses that embraced the transformation and harnessed the power of technology platforms have profited. Building brand awareness can now happen with lightning speed; although the fundamental principles of marketing remain the same, the tools have become increasingly sophisticated. Building brands still means establishing an emotional connection with consumers, and this continues to be true. A car manufacturer can build trust by promoting the reliability and safety features of its technology. Brand awareness can happen quickly without an actual physical presence with the consumer, such as a sales professional. Creativity is still crucial, although digital marketing relies upon creativity less and SEO more. Now algorithms reign supreme. Creativity will make a comeback especially through

the use of technology. Storytelling is crucial. Technology provides massive scale. However, the two are not necessarily mutually exclusive. Merging the two will take place, and Asia will most likely be at the forefront leading the rest of the world. “Digital is part of an evolutionary journey and only one disrupter in a sea of disrupters,” says Jonathan Rees, Executive Director and Leader of Deloitte Digital in Southeast Asia. “The business landscape is more complex and businesses must face a tension between the realities of operating a business and responding to disruptive forces.” Companies need to continue with conventional elements of branding. Trust will always be an important aspect of branding, and digital methods offer one plank in the overall platform. The rise of mobile devices, social media networking, and online commerce have simply expanded and accelerated disruption rather than completely replace conventional methods. Asia will lead the way to even greater technology disruptions and economic expansion as the advancements become increasingly sophisticated. 23

TOP 10

Young CEOs in Asia Wr it te n by: A LI CE YOU N G

Asia is the largest continent by population and size, and it has also developed into a financial powerhouse. China, Japan, and India represent the world’s second-, third-, and ninthlargest economies, and are also home to 10 of the world’s wealthiest people with a combined net worth of over $205 billion. But how about the millennials? Asia is producing an increasing number of billionaires under the age of 40. Who are these young, wealthy executives? Here is a list of the top 10.







Leo Chen hails from China and is worth $1.1 billion. He is CEO and co-founder of Jumei International Holding, one of the country’s largest web-based cosmetics retailers. Jumei went public in May 2015, and the offering made Chen a billionaire. He is also the founder of the company, Garena, which is one of the largest gaming platforms in the world. Chen graduated from Stanford. www.jumei.com


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Pang Shengdong is worth $1.2 billion, and he is from China. As a specialist in information technology, Shengdong is vice chairman of the Shanghai 2345 Network Holding Group, which develops software for a wide array of industries such as mobile telecommunications, banking and traffic control. In addition, the 38-year-old Shengdong founded 51.com, a successful social networking site with over 400 million page views every day. www.51.com






Yusaku Maezawa is 37 years old and from Japan. His net worth is $1.3 billion, and he founded the company, Start Today, which operates an online fashion website called Zozotown. It is Japan’s largest e-mall with over 4 million registered users. Originally, Maezawa was a professional musician, and selling records and CDs from his home by mail order eventually led to Start Today

Also from Japan, Kenji Kasahara is worth $1.5 billion after founding Mixi, a social networking site. Kasahara is 39 years old. Mixi launched in 2004, and was highly popular until many of its users began switching to sites such as Facebook. As a result, Kasahara has turned his business into a mobile video, gaming and ecommerce company. Its popular Monster Strike game has seen over 20 million downloads around the world, producing approximately $2 million per day in revenue. www.mixi.jp







From Japan, Naruatsu Baba is worth $1.6 billion, and at 33 years old, he is the country’s richest entrepreneur under the age of 40. He is CEO and founder of Colopl, which makes smartphone games. Colopl launched in 2008, and its games are downloaded approximately 10 million times each year. Colopl went public in 2012 and had revenue of over $450 million in 2014. Its most popular offering is White Cat Project. www.colopl.co.jp


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He Zhitao is from China and worth approximately $2 billion. At 33 years old, he is one of the youngest executives on this list. As president and chairman of Hangzhou Liaison Interactive Information Technology, Zhitao’s company produces information system software. The company is listed on the Shenzhen, and share prices have risen close to 50 percent this year alone. In addition, the company is projecting a $300 million net profit for 2016, which would result in a price-toearnings ratio of over 100 times. www.lianluo.com





Yao Jinbo is also worth $2.2 billion and from China. The 39 year old is founder and CEO of 58.com, which is a website billed as the Craigslist of China. 58.com is listed on the New York Stock Exchange, and the site offers classified ads for housing and items for sale in over 300 cities. Jinbo was named EY’s China Technology Entrepreneur of the Year two years ago in 2014. He also founded Xueda Education Group, also listed on the NYSE.

With a net worth of $2.2 billion, Zhang Bangxin is from China. He is cofounder, CEO and chairman of TAL Education, which is listed in the United States. TAL Education offers tutoring services for primary and secondary school students located across China. Bangxin tutored other students while in graduate school to earn money, and now his company tutors more than 500,000 students. He earned an Executive MBA from China Europe International Business School. http://en.100tal.com





Zhou Yahui has a net worth of approximately $2.2 billion, and is from China. At 38 years of age, he is President and Chairman of Kunlun Inc., and joined the list of billionaires after the firm’s initial public offering at the beginning of 2016. Kunlun is an online gaming company, and the price of shares have quadrupled since their first day of trading. Known for being the largest online gaming distribution company in China, Kunlun announced recently a partnership with Rovio, the game maker from Finland known for Angry Birds, in order to bring the brand into China. www.kunlun.com


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ARUN PUDUR With a net worth of $4 billion, Arun Pudur from India is at the top of the list for young, wealthy CEOs from Asia. Pudur is 37 years old, and he is the Chief Executive Officer at Celframe, a company that produces the secondmost popular word processor in the world, just behind Microsoft. Pudur is the son of a cinematographer, and he began to demonstrate the entrepreneurial spirit around the age of 13, breeding dogs and repairing bicycles. He founded Celframe shortly after graduating from college, which now has offices and distributors across the globe in more than 70 countries. Pudur has many diversified investments in coal, gold mining, and real estate. Currently, he is constructing a casino and building an airline in South Africa. www.celframe.com


Leading provider for cross platform

payment services Written by Catherine Rowell Produced by Mariana Lee



Established in 1998, PayGate has become a frontrunner within Korean financial technology (FinTech), providing first-class services to clients worldwide. Founded by CEO Soyeong Park, Chairperson for World FinTech Association and Chief Technology Officer Lee Dong San, a computer engineer by background, the duo desired to add value within the financial market by undertaking something that had never been seen before within the industry.


ayGate is a global leading cross-border online payment platform provider, based in Seoul, South Korea. Founded in 1998, PayGate serves around 3000 merchants, with more than 100 institutional partners worldwide, enabling payment, e-commerce and remittance services across the regions. PayGate guarantees secure online payment processing for international credit cards and other types of payments through advanced, secure, reliable and cost effective payment platform called Seyfert. With its unique and individual online


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payment processing technologies for minimising fraud and chargeback risk with cost efficiency, the state of art banking compliance platform offers an array of secure payment solutions for businesses. Since its inception, PayGate now operates in Japan, Hong Kong, Singapore, the USA, Australia, the UK and Luxembourg, with its head office in Korea. Beginning with security technology and credit card payment systems, PayGate has now expanded to incorporate services such as international remittance, currency exchange and tax refund services. Consequently, PayGate has


CEO Soyeong Park

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“‘Credibility’ is the key value in finance, and we must protect our customers’ information perfectly” – CEO Soyeong Park

Compliance As a Service ControlCase, LLC is a United States based company with headquarters in Fairfax, Virginia and PCI center of excellence in Mumbai, India. ControlCase focuses on compliance services and solutions related to regulations such as PCI, ISO27001, Sarbanes Oxley, GLBA and J-Sox globally. We are a certified ASV vendor and a PCI DSS QSA and provide PA DSS and P2PE certifications. We are certifying body for ISO 27001, SSAE 16 and also assessors for HITRUST. sdadlani@controlcase.com www.controlcase.com +91 22 66471800


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transformed into a financial service provider, creating an innovative IT platform which has enabled it to provide a cost-effective, efficient service to their customers and clients. CEO Soyeong Park explains: “Companies like to pay less and have more accessibility. We focus more on convenience and cost effectiveness for companies while providing e-commerce business, transfer works and IT platforms for all types of startups, FinTech companies like P2P lending, and crowdfunding companies.” PayGate’s patented platform, named ‘Seyfert’ is based on a blockchain system which has become common chain within FinTech companies. With an aim to become a Global banking business corporation, the platform has enabled costeffective international banking for businesses. “Our unique IT platform gives us a unique identity in the financial world,” explains Park. “This competitive advantage has attracted many businesses in the financial world to partner with us. We get hundreds of inquiries and our partners are amazed by the service quality and cost effectiveness we provide to them.” The company is also beneficial for users who have no requirement for international banking, with PayGate making it possible for foreign financial institutions to utilise their services. With the rise of mobile apps and other digital technologies, the company’s financial systems are unique with regards to security technology.

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1001-5000 Number of employees at PayGate

Park comments: “When PayGate was first established, FinTech was not widely known, but is now thought to be one of the IT solutions for e-commerce. We realised that credibility is the key value in finance, and we must protect our customers’ information perfectly.” PayGate has listened to customer feedback throughout the years, and instead of outsourcing its financial platforms like its main competitors, it has retained all systems in house, customising technologies in the process in order to fit the needs of customers. Although this has provided numerous challenges along the way, Park concludes: “The security technology at PayGate is a complex mixed cell, incorporating regulations, social norms, consumers’ buying patterns, global ecommerce market and FinTech industry. It is like a corporate body.” The company is continuing to develop and diversify its services for consumers, based on a


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Lee Dong San - CTO

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“We want to be there for hundreds of years to come, contributing, sharing and developing ourselves and society” – CEO Soyeong Park


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B2B model, with a foreign travellers’ tax refund service, currency exchange service, P2P remittance service, social financial services and infra making services for P2P lending services directly for consumers. The company’s primary focus is on online business and servers for customers, in turn developing relationships with financial institutions to create a successful platform. Many global and local companies have successfully partnered with PayGate, but significant collaborations with traditional financial institutions have enabled the company to develop and progress in developing other businesses worldwide. Since 2014, the company has even began collaborating with Spring Airlines, which has adopted PayGate’s systems, a partnership that the company hopes will develop the business further. Park adds to this, commenting: “Partnership with local banks and financial authorities would leverage the business growth for all FinTech companies.” PayGate has come a long way and has faced significant challenges. However, one main hurdle has been regulations for FinTech companies as a whole. Park explains: “Regulatory issues have created frustration, despite a pursuit for improvement which will provide an environment for all FinTech companies and start-up businesses to grow.” However, she adds: “We will continue to strive to succeed despite these challenges as we cannot resist being stagnant. Both the

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organisation and platforms are set up for the challenge”, aware that data visualisation is essential in growing the business. In order to develop the company further, PayGate is observing consumers’ lifestyles and needs through various social and media platforms. For Park, success has been hard won. “When I look back to those days, I wonder if we have really overcome those obstacles. However, we now have a great team to work with and supportive partners around the globe.” Client success is at the core of PayGate’s motivation to be part of the growth of the FinTech industry and provide a quality service to its partners. “There are millions of companies that are disappearing. We want to be there for hundreds of years to come, contributing, sharing, and developing ourselves and society,” explains Park. With the long-term vision of supporting employees within their own projects, PayGate wishes for Seyfert to become a globally recognised FinTech platform, Park adds, “So that more partners and customers will use it in the upcoming years.”


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Energising eCommerce: QNET’s Digital Transformation Written by Jennifer Johnson Produced by Kiron Chavda



The eCommerce sector is expanding rapidly, and so are customers’ expectations of eStore functionality. QNET’s CIO and CTO have devised a plan to conquer the industry — and it is about to go live 46

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Malcolm Chiu, Chief Information Officer


Changing a global platform is not a small initiative,” says Malcolm Chiu, the Chief Information Officer of Hong Kong-based direct selling titan QNET. In the rapidly-expanding world of eCommerce, user experience is a crucial factor in turning casual browsers into buyers. Chiu, and the firm’s Chief Technology Officer, Ivan Woo, have long understood the role of personalisation and agility in creating a dynamic eStore. Four Annual years ago, they also realised that QNET’s existing legacy platform could not accommodate many of the features that customers were coming to expect from an online shop. In 2012, QNET set about the mammoth task of creating an entirely new Next Generation Platform (NGP) — which is due to launch this year. “This is the largest IT project in the company’s history,” Chiu explains. “We had our entire platform built in-house about 10 years ago and we grew that platform to serve hundreds

of countries and many languages.” However, as time went on, there proved to be some legacy issues with the firm’s original platform. “It was really imperative that we transform or migrate the platform to a much more modern and robust solution,” Chiu says. QNET’s unique sales model and wide global reach requires a highly personalised web platform capable of producing detailed analytics. The company Revenue relies on teams of independent representatives (IRs) to sell its products to consumers in their communities. The IRs are then compensated based on the sales volume of their referrals and the revenue of the other IRs in their teams. Retail customers can only purchase QNET products if they are given access to a representative’s referrer ID. “We sell many different kinds of products,” says Chiu. “From vacations all the way to cosmetics. And we have many networks — they build


$430 million

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Bert Van Genechten

Timothy Steleman

COO Delaware Digital Greater China

SVP Digital & Collaboration – Delaware Digital US

Bert has a background of more than 16 years in helping customers to create end-to-end solutions and processes to serve their markets, from the ERP backbone and logistics to the digital touchpoints they create customer moments on.

In his role as SVP of Technology and Digital/collaboration practice lead for Delaware|Digital North America, Timothy focusses on emerging trends in digital (web and workplace) and eCommerce technologies. With a strong technical as well as consulting background, Timothy strives to deliver maximum value when implementing projects for Delaware|Digital customers around the globe.


Laurence Vandelanotte Sr Digital Strategist Laurence has more than 15 years’ experience in digital marketing and strategy. She sees it as her mission to assist organizations and brands to identify business objectives and user needs and to consolidate them into pragmatic and performing digital solutions.

Digital Transformation Is Not A Big Bang Theory Entering the 21st Century One Step At A Time As a lifestyle business in the 21st century doing 100% of its business transactions online, QNET’s goals to provide higher-quality services and better customer support are tightly connected with its digital development. When you are aiming for such all-inclusive advancement, choosing the right partners is crucial. Delaware|Digital is proud to be selected as a prime partner of QNET in this process, co-creating the Next Step for Sitecore (NS4S) programme. While moving forward in the digital growth and transformation, a couple of learnings occurred, which may be useful to any other companies planning such transformations. Delaware|Digital has introduced their Digital Growth Map which makes it clear that it is crucial to work on three axes, in order to be successful in digital transformation: - Channels - Data - Governance Companies don’t have to necessarily move at the same pace along each of the three axes, but significant steps need to be made when you want to start changing the company from within, like QNET did. 1. Reach your channel objectives by building a solid foundation Digital transformation is an ongoing process that keeps improving, changing and disrupting business operations. When developing a digital ecosystem, it is important that the setup of the core system and technical architecture is designed for the future – for instance, in order to provide customers with personalised advice, which is one of our core objectives. This is the reason why QNET started by selecting the Sitecore-Commerce system as a future-proof solution to develop its digital channels. Essentially, it is the foundation of its overall optimisation and prosperity. 2. Single source of truth Understanding your customers and their preferences is crucial in order to create relevance for your digital channels. Collecting this data is not really an issue anymore. The challenge, however, is bringing the data together in order to create context and generate actionable insights. Data is

often scattered in silos, which prevents managers from using it efficiently. This is the reason why you need to work towards a single source of truth for all your data: where do you store your customer information, your product information, your pricing information, … what systems need access to which parts of the data? A good definition of actionable data is, good prioritisation of sources of information and confident decisions on how to use it, which are all crucial in a successful digital transformation. 3. Move from silos towards integrated collaboration The development of a sustainable digital ecosystem requires the support of every department within the company. That is why a general mindset shift is so important in reaching digital maturity. We see a strong correlation between a customercentric organisation, overall digital maturity and ultimately, revenue. This is an ongoing project where the left and right part of the brain need to work together, where IT departments and marketing specialists together have to focus on customer satisfaction. Within QNET, this is tackled by appointing two drivers in the digital core team, Ivan Woo as IT driver and Lordever Digan as Business driver. Customer Advocacy to tie everything together When you look at the picture on the left, you can see that even a hundred years ago, sales was not about pushing a product, but about creating an immediate connection with the customer. What does she want, what experience is she looking for? This is still true today. By creating relevant and personal “moments” for a customer throughout his/ her journey with your company, you make him / her feel closer to the brand. A single customer that recommends a brand to his family and friends is worth more than any ad you can pay for. When your business is ready to rise up to the challenges of the 21st Century, use the above points as guiding principles to help you take the steps in digital. QNET is the perfect example of a company that shows impressive results.


their business and target customers on different segments — so they have many different needs when they go back to the shop.” Woo explains that QNET’s legacy platform hasn’t evolved as quickly as customer needs and expectations. “Our platform was created ten years ago, so at that time there was not as much social media and not much analytic information,” he says. “Basically, we built a platform that was highly customisable, but heavily dependent on IT. So down to a single price change or a single banner change, everything has to be done by IT.” According to Woo, IT risked becoming a “bottleneck” for business growth at the organisation. One of the primary reasons for the creation of the NGP was to free QNET’s


November 2016

Physio Radiance


tech professionals from dayto-day web maintenance tasks and afford them more time to focus on development. The firm has partnered with web content management provider Sitecore for the creation of its new platform — which has more recently become known as Next Step for Sitecore (NS4S). “Our second objective is to bring agility and scalability to a more modern eCommerce platform,” Woo explains. “With Sitecore technology this is very much achievable. They are one of the best in analytics and with their structure and mechanics we can easily scale up.” With NS4S, QNET will also be

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CIMIER QNETCity Automatic Watch able to more actively engage with the world of social media. At present, the firm makes use of platforms like Facebook and Instagram purely for social purposes and has not been able to convert these platforms to sales portals, but there are plans to expand promotion to a wider range of digital networks. “We want to catch up,” Woo affirms. “All the things we talk about: digital transformation, social media engagement, mobile-friendliness, are features that our legacy platform lacked. With Sitecore solutions this is something that we can achieve.” Chiu summarises the anticipated benefits of the NS4S platform

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Every industry has a digital disruptor. Let’s make it you.

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using “three As” — attractive, agile and analytical. The company worked alongside a team of web designers to ensure that its new, customer-facing site is as visually enticing as possible. Secondly, QNET marketeers will be able to carry out a number of initiatives themselves, including promotions and product updates, with minimal reliance on IT intervention. The third expected advantage comes as the result of big data analytics. “The platform will allow us to collect valuable information about how customers engage with our sites,” the CIO says. “We will be able to get a lot of insights to help us determine what actions we need to engage customers more effectively.” Development of the platform is expected to be completed in late October, with the help of Delaware|Digital, one of the most experienced partners on Sitecore technology. Pilot sites will launch in Sri Lanka and the United Arab Emirates in November. The two countries were selected because they are among the top performers in QNET’s two respective business models and what they refer to as world and local plans. The former involves transacting in US dollars, whereas the latter allows sellers to trade in local currency and be subject to local taxation. Business in Sri Lanka is conducted under the local plan model, and the island’s triple-language requirements make it an ideal place to gauge just how effective

“Our second objective is to bring agility and scalability to a more modern eCommerce platform”

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the new Sitecore capability translates. “These are key markets for us,” Chiu says. “In the direct selling world, our hybrid distributor-consumers are also earning income and we have a high level of income-earning distributors in the UAE. And we have a very cohesive team in Sri Lanka. We can have more input in these two countries as we launch.” QNET’s digital transformation isn’t solely

Prana Resort Nandana, Koh Samui, Thailand 54

November 2016

limited to the new platform, either. It is a holistic revamp of the way the firm presents itself across multiple digital landscapes. Earlier in the project timeline, Woo supervised a significant data centre merge, which saw a 10-year-old data centre integrated with a more modern one at Hong Kong’s CyberPort site. In the process, some of the company’s ageing data equipment was replaced. Woo is also currently exploring the best ways to utilise cloud technology within the business.


“The programme has multiple facets,” Ultimately, Woo and Chiu hope the explains Chiu. “We have the main project will enhance how customers eCommerce website and perceive and interact with then we have the mobile QNET — but the duo has site. We also run a a larger goal in mind: commission engine “We believe we will where we distribute become a digital commissions leader in this industry,” to millions of Chiu says. Malcolm distributors around Chiu has since the world on a been promoted to was founded weekly basis. There COO, a position from are a lot of elements to which he will continue to this digital transformation drive digital transformation that we’re embarking on.” into other areas of operations.

1998 The year that


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How digitalisation is transforming the

Bank Islam Brunei Darussalam Written by Wedaeli Chibelushi Produced by Mariana Lee


Business Review Asia speaks to Gyorgy Ladics, COO of Bank Islam Brunei Darussalam (BIBD) about how the bank is embracing digital engagement.


Digital engagement” can seem like a buzzword, but to the Bank Islam Brunei Darussalam (BIBD) this two-word concept is reinventing its operations. To find out more, we spoke to Gyorgy Ladics, BIBD’s Chief Operations Officer. Ladics has held several demanding roles, such as Chief Technology Officer at Barclays and Head of Operations and Technology at Citibank. Whilst working in the financial sector, Ladics has voyaged around the likes of Central Europe, Russia, UAE, Egypt, India, Pakistan and Singapore. Currently, Ladics is using the knowledge gained from these experiences to help execute BIBD’s digital engagement initiative. Ladics begins with the basics. “BIBD has a fullyfledged banking licence. It’s Brunei’s largest bank and leading full service Islamic financial institution.” he tells us. “In addition to consumer and corporate businesses we also have a quite significant treasury & global markets and merchant banking business lines”. With an asset base of B$ 7.5 billion BIBD remains the largest bank in Brunei Darussalam and plays an important role in supporting the country’s long term development plan, known as Brunei vision 2035. When did digitalisation become a focus for BIBD? According to Ladics, BIBD started a transformation journey five or six years ago. “BIBD was pretty much a bank that provided services through branches (so called traditional banking) where the customers interact with the branch.

‘With an asset base of B$ 7.5 billion BIBD remains the largest bank in Brunei Darussalam and plays an important role in supporting the country’s long term development plan’ –D  r. Gyorgy Ladics,

Chief Operating Officer

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1 In every now in one #

Let the transform

Dell, EMC and other trademarks are trademarks of Dell Inc. or its subsidiaries.Â

ything e place.

mation begin.


When you need to make a transaction you come to the branch, or you can go to ATMs.” BIBD recognised that something was missing – it was limiting itself. “In a small market like Brunei, we had significant competitors, there’s all the big global or regional names with strong well-known brands, international best practices, and strong technology so we need to ensure that BIBD is up to the challenge,” Ladics explains. BIBD set a strategy to become the bank of choice, earn customer trust, provide signature services and use “technology as a differentiator” – a strategy which enables sustained and healthy growth as well as market leading position. “The goal is to be the bank of choice


November 2016

“The goal is to be the bank of choice and digital initiatives are key enablers for that” – Dr. Gyorgy Ladics, COO


Calls received more than


and digital initiatives “We’re now present on Thousand are key enablers for our customer’s phones. annually that. We are really focusing We started mobile banking in on the changing behavior 2012 and it has gained a very rapid and needs of our customers”. adoption which by now has reached Ladics informs us that BIBD is well a 70-75 percent penetration of mobile on its way to reaching that goal. The usage in our customer base. We have bank has changed the way it looks, the introduced digital merchant platforms way it serves customers and the way so you can use your phone while paying its services are accessed. Rebranding, a merchant,” Ladics commented. branch redesign and refurbishments, BIBD also introduced an enterprise smart branch initiative, establishment loyalty and rewards program in of a robust contact center and moving November 2013. BIBD customers towards digital are all key contributors could use their Hadia Points for bill to success. We ask Ladics to expand. payments and top-up services. A wide

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range of eVouchers are available to redeem points. Guided by its “digital engagement roadmap,” the bank introduced a mobile advertising platform the following month. The interface featured interactive content and push messaging. April 2014 saw the introduction of virtual pre-paid credit cards, for online shopping use quicker transfers. Throughout this period, the number of people logging onto BIBD’s mobile banking app steadily increased. Ladics tells us that BIBD customers interact at least 18 times in a month via digital channels and 70 to 75 percent of the customer base uses digital regularly. “I think this is a great story!” Ladics enthuses. “This sort of penetration and the popularity of digital services speak for themselves. Despite being so passionate about

BiBD Mobile transactions more than

2.5 Million annually

“We started mobile banking in 2012 and it has gained a very rapid adoption which by now has reached a 70-75 percent penetration of mobile usage in our customer base” – Dr. Gyorgy Ladics, COO

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November 2016


its “digital evolution” (as Ladics calls it), BIBD is keen to maintain its physical branches and presence. “It’s important to keep the branches upgraded and service customers seamlessly, irrespective whether digital or face to face.” affirms Ladics. Card transactions BIBD has transformed, refurbished and more than “digitally enabled” its branches to a “serviceoriented, functional, contemporary style”. The Million refurbished branches are now more spacious, annually modern and (one might say) fashionable. However, looks aren’t everything. BIBD’s branches have benefitted from digital engagement too; new digital banking platform, re-engineered business services allow consumers to experience “express banking”. Using shopping carts adopted from ecommerce, they can purchase products and services while in the bank. The focus is indeed on human interaction, demonstration and explanation of products and services. Ladics explains: “You don’t come and fill forms. In the age of digital transformation, we also went in the direction of a smart branch, for which we got an award from the Asian Banking Magazine. There’s no need to fill out any forms. When you come to see the customer representative (either to open an account or for additional services), the process is like an ecommerce tour with product briefs where you can pick and choose your services.” In order to enable self-service and support customer digital engagement, BIBD has built a call center which later was transformed to


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a contact center to further boost customer interaction. “For the generation of WhatsApp/ WeChat/Line”, the centre enables consumers to instant message or call contact centre agents with any issues they may have. BIBD boasts a “secure, authenticated digital conversation” via its Mobile Application. Ladics summarises: “We’re opening up all the channels, both face-to-face and digital. We are well aware of the cyber threats in the industry and we have to protect ourselves and our customers from any potential dangers. Our IT infrastructure and data centre is upgraded to protect our data and protect our customer’s information”. By putting customer first and valuing its customers, BIBD manages to stay abreast of the competition. According to Ladics, BIBD successfully retains customers and has hardly lost any customers to competitors. In his own words, BIBD is “opening the door to new prospects while retaining its existing customer base”. Ladics added: “Throughout the past few years, we become more and more aware that customers are choosing banks and service providers based on service levels, and also simplicity and easiness to access or obtain services plays a key role”. Finally, Ladics tells us that BIBD not only values its customers, it prizes its partners too.

Hadiah Points distributed more than

250 Million annually

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“We believe that digital banking on the payments, deposits as well as on the lending side will definitely grow and be significant. Also we might see that digital banking services will be seamlessly integrated or packaged into the offering of other bigger digital players” – Dr. Gyorgy Ladics, COO


November 2016


BiBD Online transactions


He names Silverlake Also we might see that Thousand Digital Economy and digital banking services annually the entire Silverlake will be seamlessly integrated Group as key backers who or packaged into the offering of are “truly driving the innovation and other bigger digital players (social digital banking services”. Ladics also media, digital chat providers, Telco, mentions EMC, RSA and IBM – they eCommerce giants etc...)” he says. operate BIBD’s data centre and help BIBD’s digital journey continues; the bank cope with the increase it is far from completion. Building a in processing requirements. seamless omni channel customer Ladics rounds off with his thoughts experience, forming strategic alliances on the future. “We believe that digital with FinTech and other market players banking on the payments, deposits are coming on the horizon. as well as on the lending side will definitely grow and be significant.

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Welcome to the Fourth Generation Written by Wedaeli Chibelushi Produced by James Pepper



Earlier this year, Ooredoo became the first mobile operator to offer 4G services in Myanmar. Business Review Asia quizzes CTIO John Farhat about fending off the competition, connecting with customers and negotiating with regulators.


yanmar’s telecom sector is developing at an unprecedented speed, with companies competing to serve the increasing data demand in the country. We speak to Ooredoo Myanmar, a telecom firm passionate about providing the best 4G service in Myanmar. Ooredoo launched in August 2014, and is part of a wider international brand with operations spanning the Middle East, North Africa and Southeast Asia. “We give you reliable experience”, John Farhat, Chief Technology and Information Officer of Ooredoo Myanmar tells ABR. Sure there’s competing telecom firms in Myanmar, but Ooredoo gives its customers “the latest technology and an affordable service. We


November 2016

offer a premium product at an affordable price, which is different to our competitors. With us we promise you a constant and reliable experience”. CTIO for approximately 2 and a half years, Farhat


describes his department at Ooredoo. “Right now, we look at technology as a holistic department. There’s no longer a split between Network and IT, there’s a lot of convergence between these two departments. I run both of these functions in a more efficient manner… understanding that we’re serving a population of over 52 million.”

The fourth generation “You know the difference between

4G and 3G, right?” Farhat asks. He gives us a recap – 4G is the fourth generation of mobile technology, following on from 2G & 3G. 3G allows us to access the internet effectively through our mobile phones, but 4G makes it much quicker “especially when it comes to high definition videos, games and such,” Farhat

“The market is hungry for speed and quality service. This is what 4G is now providing. We're thrilled with the uptake, so far, and look forward to expanding even further when more spectrum is granted in this market” – Rene Meza, CEO of Ooredoo Myanmar


adds. Alongside personal benefits, 4G also assists businesses – video conferencing and bank transactions are made easier. Better connection gives SMEs and small companies the ability to expand, and business people can work remotely. Why spend time and money flying to long-distance meetings when you can video call from your office? On an even wider scale, 4G benefits whole countries. Farhat explains, “it enables enterprise and gives countries better infrastructures to expand their economy.” Exponential demand According to Farhat, mobile data

services in Myanmar were very different in the recent past. “We used to drive around and see people having limited access to very lousy service,” he describes. Now, when Farhat surveys built-up areas, almost everybody has a phone in their hands. “What’s interesting about this country is that the smartphone penetration compared to surrounding countries is very high, taking into account that we just


November 2016

introduced the services 2 years ago”. Although Farhat says Myanmar is relatively advanced when it comes to mobile technology, multinational networking company Ericsson lumps the country with its neighbours when conducting its Mobility Reports. Nevertheless, Ericsson’s studies are useful for acknowledging Ooredoo Myanmar’s potential – the 2016 report shows that in Southeast Asia and Oceania, 4G mobile subscriptions are expected to increase to over 40 percent from a current 5 percent by 2021. Why the huge increase? “People are hungry for high-speed data,” Farhat asserts. “People are hungry for the knowledge they get from connecting and being connected. It’s an incredible growth that took everybody by surprise”. Future steps To adapt to this growth, Ooredoo

has extended its fibre optic network to over 12,000 kilometres. Its current network penetration rate is 86 percent. “The only constraint that we have currently is that we don’t


The year that Ooredoo Myanmar was founded


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have enough spectrum, but we’re having a discussion with the regulator about that,” Farhat comments. Spectrum is an essential resource for telecom operators. Available in bands, it carries traffic like data and voice. “We understand the importance of improving the economy, giving access to the people of Myanmar and encouraging us to provide them with the latest technology”. Farhat believes that more spectrum will be granted in the future, but for now Ooredoo is working strategically with its competitors to improve operations. “One of the most strategic projects is network sharing with competitors,” he says, a surprising notion considering Myanmar’s 4G market is the subject of fierce competition between firms like Ooredoo. However, Farhat explains that it is possible to stay ahead

“We understand the importance of improving the economy, giving access to the people of Myanmar and encouraging us to provide them with the latest technology” – John Farhat, CTIO, Ooredoo Myanmar

Mr. John Farhat, Ooredoo CTIO




November 2016


of the market while sharing with and gaining from competitors. He tells us: “We’re currently in discussion of sharing of sites, active and passive. Site sharing is eco-friendly…we share the same generator, we share the same power. Furthermore, it reduces our costs.” Rene Meza, CEO of Ooredoo Myanmar, echoes Farhat on the potential for 4G service in this emerging market. “We launched the first 3G only network, because we believed that Myanmar would embrace the internet, and that bet paid off. 80 percent of our customers are using data. The market is hungry for speed and quality service. This is what 4G is now providing. We’re thrilled with the uptake, so far, and look forward to expanding even further when more spectrum is granted in this market”. Along with becoming the first mobile operator in Myanmar to offer 4G services, Ooredoo celebrated reaching over 8 million users in 2016. Farhat tells us what the company has planned for the rest of 2016, and the future beyond that. “We want to continue enriching reaching people’s lives and providing a reliable service”, he enthuses. “We’re a reliable business - I don’t see that changing.”

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Farrer Park Hospital is in the realm of disrupting the healthcare norm Written by Catherine Rowell Produced by Matthew Pepper


With more than 28 years of experience in the healthcare industry in leading companies such as Covidien, Covance and Schering-Plough, Chief Executive Officer Dr. Timothy Low has a strong background of leadership within the industry and medical community, and is listed in the ranks of Stanford Who’s Who.


EO of Farrer Park Hospital, Dr. Timothy Low, brings a strong leadership background in managing award-winning hospitals. Prior to his current role, Low served as CEO of Gleneagles Hospital in Singapore. Through his leadership, the hospital established itself as a six-star private healthcare provider, clinching 14 local and regional awards including the prestigious Asian Hospital Management Award, as well as the ‘National Work Redesign Model Company’ by Spring Singapore, a governing agency for innovation. Under Low’s leadership, revenues grew by 42 percent to over USD$100 million. Having also served in senior management positions for pharmaceutical and medical device industries in the Asia Pacific region,


November 2016

Low’s breadth of exposure allowed him to pioneer the establishment of a global contract research organisation, validating Singapore as its regional headquarters. Turning back to Farrer Park, we asked him all about the project. 1. How long had the hospital been under construction before opening in March 2016? How big a project and investment has this been? First conceptualised by a group of doctors in 2008, the S$800 million 20 storey complex was completed after five years of construction. This is the first development in Asia to house a hospital, medical centre and a hotel and spa under a single building. The hospital has a capacity of 220


beds, and is directly connected to the Farrer Park Medical Centre which houses 189 clinics over 10 floors for more than 400 medical specialists across a broad range of specialties. 2. Describe the unique offerings provided by Farrer Park Hospital - what is the rationale behind doing something completely different, and what feedback have you received? Singapore is a unique medical destination due to its reputation for excellent clinical care, and also its high standards of patient services and dedication to research and wellness. As a private tertiary hospital, they aim to bring these benefits along with ultimate convenience, cutting edge technology and fivestar personalised care for patients. Farrer Park Hospital is the first hospital in Asia closely integrated with a medical centre and a fivestar hotel and spa within the same building. Named Connexion, this integrated building renewed the concept of medical tourism and hospitality like no other. The union

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Infection Control

Surgical Workplace

Critical Care


Patient Support Systems

Biomedical Engineering

Diagnostic Imaging


O&G Perinatal

Healthcare Education

Regional Presence


of these two elements has sparked a fresh approach by aligning hotel quality ambiance together with clinical standards with its attention to detail across all facets within the facility. The hospital has followed a biophilic architecture approach throughout the facility, incorporating nature and art to enhance healing. By striving to have the restful ambiance of a hotel, in addition to the proximity of doctors and family under the same roof, as well as using technology to enable seamless and speedy decision making; all this is undertaken in support of better patient outcome and shorter stays.

Some of the compliments the hospital has received circle around the unique features they have painstakingly paid attention to - a traditional hospital would not carve out 15 gardens at multiple levels throughout the facility so that patients and families can have places to feel the warmth of the sun and breathe fresh air whenever they like. The facility also hosts a private collection of over 700 commissioned Asian paintings meant to enhance the healing environment through visual sensory. Despite the land scarcity in Singapore, fewer paid parking lots

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“Top accredited medical staff, along with stateof-the-art equipment and technology, contributes to increased efficiency, reduced cost, and most, importantly improved patient outcomes� 90

November 2016


have been intentionally designed, making them one and a half times the size of a standard lot to allow a patient on crutches to comfortably extend the car door fully. Insisting on a curved sink so that surgeons will not have water dripping down their elbows after scrubbing his or her hands and a bath bench with a cut out allows patients to wash themselves independently. This may seem unnecessary but these innovative approaches translate to actual benefits to those who value them. Everyone has the same end goal, a good experience and better patient outcome. The hospital’s strategy is simple. They take their responsibilities to patients, their families and the clinicians seriously. Attend to their needs, anticipate their wants, and find the best way to address these concerns through innovation and technology. This ultimately brings value to patients. The hospital is leading the way in healthcare innovation and is a premier institution for medical care and education that is based upon three important tenets for the patient - comfort, fairness and value. Top accredited medical staff, along with state-of-the-art equipment and technology, contributes to increased efficiency, reduced cost, and most, importantly improved patient outcomes. 3. Tell us about your principles of value, comfort and fairness. The core values of Farrer Park Hospital form the very basis of the culture and the way they approach their work. Their aim to provide patient’s comfort, fairness and value is deeply engraved into every

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detail, from clinical and service excellence to the finer design elements within the environment. The hospital’s care philosophy extends beyond healing and the management of disease to engaging patients in pursuit of good health. Healing does not end after a successful operation or about coming to the hospital for a procedure and then recuperating at home. It is about having the best and most comfortable services to get the patient on their feet. Having a family support structure close by, where relatives can stay close to the hospital is essential in the rehabilitation process. That is why, as part of Connexion, the hospital is Asia’s first, integrated lifestyle hub for healthcare and wellness that is linked to a five-star hotel and spa. Patients are treated by an experienced team of medical and healthcare specialists in an environment meticulously designed to maximize comfort and efficiency while promoting well-being, rest and recovery. Throughout the facility, patients will find that attention has been given to every aspect and detail of the facility – from the comfort of patients, to its impact on the environment, to the speed and ease of obtaining medical attention and to the maintenance of hygiene. 4. How does Farrer Park Hospital make use of technology to enhance its offering to patients and visitors? Farrer Park Hospital is designed and built to be a hospital of the future, combining innovation in medical care and medical education. We embrace technology


November 2016


and improve medical care through its state-ofthe-art equipment that facilitates telemedicine consulting services across the world. To ensure seamless and rapid flow of information between the admission services, inpatient areas, operating rooms, diagnostic and therapeutic centres, clinical laboratories and medical clinics, the hospital’s 18 operating rooms are linked via fibreoptic connections to various locations through the Connexion campus, including the hospital’s education centre and lecture hall, teaching clinics and tutorial rooms as well as the hotel’s function rooms. The campus has all the fibre-optic cables and IP (Internet Protocol) core built in during construction. There are 8,300 data points within the complex. In terms of wireless connectivity, there are 650 Wi-Fi access points. Hence the whole building is actually a digital complex, integrating the hotel, hospital and medical centre. This digital communication is important to ensure seamless patient care and customer service. The healthcare industry tends to be slow in adopting technology but Farrer Park Hospital aims to be the healthcare disruptor and they want to leapfrog the healthcare hospitality scene. The seamlessness of information flow was the focus at the onset of the project. This hospital was planned to be technologically relevant for the next 20 years, because the future for healthcare is going to be digital-focused and technology-based.

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Some of the latest technologies include: (a) Virtual Desktop Interactive. Doctors can view a patient’s tests results to order medication remotely from anywhere in the world. (b) MicroDose Mammography. Women tend to skip this process as they find it to be an uncomfortable procedure. The unique feature of the hospital’s machine, the MicroDose Mammography, is that both top and bottom plates of the


November 2016

mammogram are ergonomically curved, promoting comfort for women. The carbon fibre wrapped base plate also helps to reduce the coldness of metal plates. The machine uses an efficient method of scanning through a sweeping motion instead of the conventional trajectory and this technique can effectively reduce the amount of radiation used by up to 50 percent. (c) CT Scan. The hospital has the latest CT Scan which can slice 640 times

within one second. To find how much blockage there is in an artery, the hospital normally undertakes an angiogram, which requires inserting wires into the groin. And when they take the wires out, medical staff need to press for a while to stop the bleeding. Now we can do a CT Angiogram, there is no need for an invasive procedure. We just have to go through the scanner, and within one heartbeat of a second, the scanner would have captured all the coronary (heart) vessels. So the procedure only needs 10 minutes instead of

staying one day for an angiogram. (d) Washable and waterproof beds. The hospital’s beds are specially made in Germany and are fully washable. A normal bed in other hospitals usually undergo a wipe down when patients discharge. Farrer Park’s beds are waterproof and a thorough wash allows for better infection control and saves time.

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5. How have you approached recruitment at the hospital? Farrer Park Hospital is the first private hospital to serve as a teaching site, with medical students from Lee Kong Chian School of Medicine at Nanyang Technological University (NTU). The Board of Directors saw the need for private players to support the Singapore healthcare infrastructure and capacity building. The teaching infrastructure was planned during its construction which includes specially sized and designed teaching clinics, lecture theatre, seminar rooms as well as access to large conference facilities. Students have the opportunity to attend selected classes organized by and implemented on-site at Farrer Park. The medical students will also benefit from specialists who are practicing at the hospital and also appointed as academic clinical teachers to lecture at NTU. These courses may include beaming of live tutorials directly from the operating rooms or special medical seminars held at the hotel ballroom.


November 2016

6. What types of physician are you attracting? The environment at Farrer Park Hospital is about clinical and service excellence, supported by physical and technological constructs that facilitates both these endeavors. We are building a culture of fairness and promoting decision making that is free from


self-interest and toward better patient outcome. Doctors who join must be aware that the hospital takes the code of comfort, fairness and value seriously. 7. What does it mean to be recognised with an award for Best New Hospital of the Year in Asia Pacific?

The award is jointly organised by Global Health & Travel and consulting firm Frost & Sullivan, where they conducted a survey among 6,500 consumers across 12 countries in Asia Pacific. They assessed the accessibility of the facilities of the hospital, hotel and medical centre, patient care and equipment. And

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“The environment at Farrer Park Hospital is about clinical and service excellence, supported by physical and technological constructs that facilitates both these endeavors�


Farrer Park won the award, as consumers’ choice for the Best New Hospital of the Year in Asia Pacific. An institution built by healthcare practitioners has its advantage as we place emphasis on every detail. Consistent with their care philosophy, patients will discover that much attention has been placed on every aspect – from the comfort of our patients, to its impact to the environment, the efficiency and ease of obtaining medical attention and to the maintenance of hygiene. With the recognition of this award, the hospital looks forward to strengthen its processes and implement more training sessions to ensure a consistent, five-star hotel service quality standard towards its stakeholders. 8. How do you plan to build on this success? Farrer Park Hospital has won seven awards in just six months after its official opening in March 2016. These recognitions are a testimony to the service and clinical excellence within the organisation and they are ever motivated to continue raising the

bar of the Farrer Park Experience through continuous training and inculcating the ‘Farrer Park Service Mindset’ into employees. The hospital also intends to grow the existing 500 staff to 800 in the next two years and expand their range of medical disciplines offered. 9. What is your vision for Farrer Park? Farrer Park Hospital will be an award winning five-star hospital and at the top of the mind for private healthcare seekers. The facility will be recognised for offering treatments for complex cases in a fair and affordable manner. The hospital aims to attract more private patients from emerging markets such as Myanmar, Cambodia, Vietnam and Bangladesh who require specialised treatments. Farrer Park hopes to break even within five years, far ahead of the usual eight years in traditional hospitals due to their innovations and technological advancements.

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Enabling Growth

Through Relevance Written by Nell Walker Produced by Matthew Pepper


CIO Jeff Carvell discusses his responsibility in transforming an information management function, and the challenges involved


or the leader of an information management (IM) function, there’s a balance between what the organisation can achieve through technology, what the organisation must achieve to enable its strategic objective, and what the CIO might like to bring. Being focussed on continued relevance can unlock the opportunities IM leaders covet. Jeff Carvell, CIO of InterOil, has 25 years of IM experience behind him. He has led IM functions in both SMEs and MNCs, worked at a number of global locations, and been responsible for IM development across many industries. “I like the challenge of an IM function that’s broken and needs work, especially in companies that are on the edge of their own transformations,” says Carvell. “I’ve worked in manufacturing and financial services, then more recently mining, and now oil


November 2016

and gas. There’s always more that IM could for the business, and that seems to hold true across multiple sectors.” When setting the strategic direction for the function at InterOil, the prioritisation of business demanded that initiatives ahead of self-improvement became an essential exercise. Understandably, the business expected that the IM function was ready to support the broader organisational transformation. In fact, there was a lot to be achieved in order to become effective. During the first quarter of 2014, a strategy was approved for reinventing the IM function from a cost consumer to a strategic enabler. The strategy was underpinned by three objectives, each aligned to a fiscal year planning horizon. Each tactical step moved the function closer to success. An early starting point was to record


“The IM function has worked hard to earn its place as a high performing and relevant part of the business” w w w . i n t e r o i l .–cJeff o m Carvell, 1 0 3 CIO

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the current state and to put in place a process for ongoing measurement of maturity in capability. It was important to bring together both empirical data and customer perception. “At the start we received the brutal facts about our performance” Carvell says. “However, there was support for our continued willingness to treat feedback as a gift, and to learn from that”. It soon became clear that information management was in many ways disconnected from the business and was not prepared to meet demand unless structural changes were

applied. Taking a step back to observe, it became clear the IM team spent most of it’s time firefighting. There was little specialisation and while there was tacit knowledge of technical solutions, the frequent outages were symptomatic of being out of control. The first financial year objective was therefore to stabilise operationally, and included a program of technical changes. These tactical steps were carefully chosen to upgrade foundation services as soon as possible. The drive to stabilise as quickly as possible allowed a return to

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Your Uptime is Everything

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October 2016


the real prize: enabling the business. Not fighting fires allowed InterOil to get to the starting line. Next was to design services, set service levels, and implement an ITIL-based service delivery model that would operate in the back of house. IT solutions company Empired was chosen on a number of winning criteria, and overall represented the best fit for the size of the organisation. “In front of the customer, there were many places where our service levels were failing,” admits Carvell. “Sometimes due to the language we used, sometimes due to our lack of humility, and in large part due to a mismatch of what we provided compared to what the business needed. One example was the need for 24/7 support, but most important was the overwhelming request to talk to a person. “At the time it seemed revolutionary – building a customer service delivery model that is humanistic, understands the business, oversees the engagement end to end, is placed onsite, and is next to the customer. Each of these requirements was built into a delivery model for the front of house internal team called ‘wantoks’

in Tok Pisin, Papua New Guinea (PNG), meaning literally ‘one talk’ but culturally meaning a person close to you, to whom you give complete loyalty and with whom you share common values. The team came up with the name as a way of explaining the newly positioned support team on the ground; it was a winner.” To implement a complete service delivery model required building strong links between the various outsourced service delivery partners and the internal team, between the IM function and the business, and ensuring the wantoks were fully trained in their new role. To implement this service delivery framework, project management consultancy PM Partners ran a dedicated program. In order to deliver rapid resolution of technical issues when they arose, it was necessary to have in place access to on-the-ground engineers as dedicated resolver groups. Onsite in the field, at small and large logistics bases and in the office locations, the wantoks were supplemented by onsite infrastructure management resources. In Singapore, Empired provided this support while in PNG, Allcom MCR was chosen as the w w w. i n t e ro i l . c o m


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trusted service delivery partner. With the stabilisation phase complete, it was time to take the steps towards becoming world class. In the second fiscal year the IM capability needed to mature further in accordance with targets set after the original maturity assessment. Again, a series of high business benefit projects and initiatives were slated. To be world class the IM solutions needed to be at least industry standard and as good as our industry peers. The changes required included a lot of standardisation – of hardware models, software titles, configuration, and security – actually right through the technology stack. In the field, achieving a high level of availability in site connectivity had been challenging VoiP telephony, data acquisition and application performance. An end to end solution design was required which upgraded equipment and applied some hard learned lessons. “The nature of field operations is that it constantly changes,” Carvell says. “Technology in field operations needs to be standardised in design and build, yet portable for


mobilisation and demobilisation. The demands are always increasing”. A containerised solution was not a new industry concept, but the brief was that the standard design would include what had been learnt over time. The solution needed to be standardised, include VSAT connection redundancy, provide safe operation during assembly, maintain tight engineering control, achieve helicopter portability under a max weight of load constraint, rapid mobilization and demobilisation, as well as remote connectivity monitoring – all underpinned by field support. This was developed in collaboration with network and satellite communications service provider, Speedcast. A further challenge to solve in the

field was the reliability of internet connection for data acquisition. At each rig site, oilfield service business Geoservices Australasia Pty Ltd, was required to maximise the drilling investment through appropriate decision-making. Historically, the bandwidth demands of corporate traffic and acquired data were impacting each other, and from a service model point of view represented an unnecessary dependency. Working closely with Geoservices, a design was established for standalone infrastructure to support mudlogging. Geoservices prepared a standard solution, developed mobilisation and demobilisation processes, and integrated the

“At the time it seemed revolutionary – building a customer service delivery model that is humanistic, understands the business, oversees the engagement end to end, is placed onsite and next to the customer” – Jeff Carvell, CIO

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November 2016


solution with the on-the-ground engineers. Having delivered the world class objectives, the next series of steps were designed to deliver something world-leading. In order to say the business was leading peers, the application of technology needed to be at the front of what was possible. While InterOil has focussed on data management, the confidentiality, integrity and availability of data has improved. From initially having islands of data, today data is synchronised globally, secured, and available when offline. A single corporate DMS provides the core document and records management solution and as an extension, controlled documents are published to the intranet both inside and outside of the corporate management system. The objective of always having the latest version and a single source of truth has been met. “We’ve taken the function through to the targeted maturity,” Carvell says, “and improved the quality of what we do, but also rebuilt the entire IM service offering. In the past 24 months we’ve gone through significant change. “From initially achieving reliability, then becoming industry comparable and finally a strategically aligned enabler, the IM function has worked hard to earn its place as a high performing and relevant part of the business”.

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Profile for Business Review Asia

Business Review Asia Magazine - November 2016  

Business Review Asia Magazine - November 2016