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my OCT-DEC 2019 VOL. 2 • NO. 4 • 2019 RM10


TO BE THE TECH HUB OF THE REGION Penang Chief Minister, YAB Chow Kon Yeow


A never before seen interactive technological showcase


Penang to host World Congress on Information Technology in 2020

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From the Chairman’s Desk


his is the last issue for the year 2019. PIKOM can look back on another year where it has successfully organised many interesting events for its members. Among the highlights of this year so far are: The release of the 12th issue of the very popular ICT Job Market Outlook was released in May. The inaugural Cybersecurity Conference, which was spearheaded by the Cybersecurity Chapter of PIKOM. The rebranding of Outsourcing Malaysia to OM. PIKOM organised the ICT Productivity Nexus Industry Day Before the year ends there are a few more important events such as the popular #MYCYBERSALE 2019. This year, Malaysia’s biggest online sale will be from 27th September to 3rd October. The highlight of the year is PIKOM Unicorn Tech Awards 2019 which will be held on 3rd October. The event, to be held at the KLCC Convention Centre will see around 1000 people gather to celebrate the achievements of people in the tech industry. We are very pleased that Serba Dinamik, a leading oil and gas company, is the Title Sponsor of this event. This proves that the company values the recognition presented by PIKOM. Over the years we have transformed ourselves from being a cash and carry association to being the voice of the ICT industry, as we represent over 80% of the ICT industry. The cover story on the founder and Group CEO Dato’ Dr. Ir Mohd Abdul Karim Abdullah is fascinating. This self-made billionaire had a humble beginning and learned important life lessons while toiling away in the family watermelon farm. His vision and his commitment to deliver the best to the customers have brought his company to where it is. The company, via its subsidiary is also branching out into IT as well. Read about his fascinating journey with his company. Our other cover story focuses on Penang as it will play host to WCIT2020. MY.IT is featuring a few stories from Penang this issue because WCIT2019 will be held in Yerevan, Armenia from 6th to 9th October. This issue of MY. IT will be distributed at the event to highlight Penang as one of the main ICT hubs in the country and how the island is gearing up to host WCIT2020.

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The Chief Minister of Penang, YAB Chow Kon Yeow graces the cover and talks about the preparations being made to ensure that it will be the most memorable conference. Dato’ Ar. Yew Tung Seong, the Mayor of Penang, talks about Penang TECHFEST2020 that will be held concurrently with WCIT2020. Penang TECHFEST2020 is the first of its kind that has been held in the country and will definitely attract a lot of attention from the public. Dato’ Loo Lee Lian, the CEO of InvestPenang explains why Penang still manages to attract the highest FDI in the country despite competition from other regions in Malaysia. Ashwin Gunasekaran, CEO of the Penang Convention & Exhibition Bureau, highlighted the excellent potential of the business events industry in the state. Stephanie Sitt, the co-founder of 123rf, a stock content agency that sells royalty-free images, is featured under the Women In Tech series. She talks about the challenges she faced in the early days of the company and of women’s role in the ICT industry. I hope you enjoy this issue and see you till the next time!

Ganesh Kumar Bangah PIKOM Chairman




Vol 2 No. 4 3

CHAIRMAN’S MESSAGE COVER STORY Penang Welcomes Delegates to WCIT2020 Chief Minister of Penang, YAB Chow Kon Yeow is focused on ensuring that Penang is ready to meet the Industrial 4.0 revolution by transforming it into a smart city with e-government and e-commerce in place. He talks about what WCIT2020 means for the Penang and more.


Penang will be the focus of the Tech world in 2020


Cover Penang Chief Minister, YAB Chow Kon Yeow

InvestPenang’s plans to boost the state’s image as the start-up & digital innovation centre of Southeast Asia


All pictures in Penang Photography Teh Young-Sun of Eyedear Make-up and Styling Steven Sunny Hair Winz Lum Art director Lyla Coordination Nurul Asyiq general manager WCIT2020 & Sashii Taran events lead TECHFEST2020

Penang Conventions & Exhibition Bureau takes Business Events to greater heights


WCIT comes to Malaysia again


I UTAMA goes cashless





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Since assuming office as the island’s fifth Chief Minister in May 2018, YAB Chow Kon Yeow is focused on ensuring that Penang is ready to meet the Industrial 4.0 revolution by transforming it into a smart city with e-government and e-commerce in place. It is very fitting for the WCIT2020 to be hosted in Penang — which was named by CNN among its 17 best places to visit in Asia. He talks to My.IT about what WCIT2020 means for the Penang and more.

• By Sharmila Valli Narayanan • Photography Teh Young-Sun

Why is Penang, chosen as the host for the World Congress on Information Technology (WCIT2020), important for the city? The World Congress on Information Technology (WCIT) is an international trends conference which is unique in its global perspective on technology and ICT issues. It draws global businesses, governments, and academic leaders worldwide to discuss emerging technologies and breakthroughs, emerging markets, legal and policy issues, political and economic trends as well as technology user perspectives and opportunities in the global marketplace. Hosting the event will



Chief Minister YAB Chow Kon Yeow.

place Penang in the top of the minds of celebrated thinkers, innovators and stakeholders to fully leverage on technologies’ promises for better well-being and sustainable governance as Malaysia leads the digital transformation in the region. What did Penang do to bid for the chance to host this conference? Penang’s opened its arms to stakeholders to find new ways of translating our vision of a balanced development. When the Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC) and the National Tech Association of Malaysia, (PIKOM) approached us with their winning bid to host WCIT2020 in Penang, we jumped at the opportunity. We knew that our ambitious intention found an answer with WCIT2020 and its global views to collaborate and forge alliances with the world’s best.

What benefits do you think the island will get from hosting this conference? From being inspired first hand through the global thought leadership conversations by recognised leaders in technology all the way to establishing partnerships from business matching and exploring market access, I am confident that Malaysia will stand to benefit from WCIT2020 as much as what the world stands to gain from the understanding of doing businesses in Malaysia and Southeast Asia, especially in the areas of healthcare tech, green tech and Agri tech. What is Penang doing to ensure that WCIT2020 will be the best conference of its kind yet? I am personally chairing the steering committee and with 23 agencies and stakeholders’ with all hands on deck approach, we are taking all steps to

gear up for a successful WCIT2020. To drive the inclusiveness of the tech conversations, we are turning streets and buildings of Penang accessible for the exhibition portion of WCIT2020. We are also working with global ecosystems to attract emerging ideas and new solutions to address the implications of disruptive innovations and transformations. WCIT2020 is primed to bring out an immersive conference experience that cannot be missed. The Penang Government has an ambitious plan: Penang2030 – a family focussed and smart state. Could you explain what you mean by being a ‘smart state’? I launched the state Vision Penang2030 in May last year with the tag line “A Family-focused Green and Smart State That Inspires the Nation.” For many decades, Penang has been



Penang at a Glance • Penang is one of the most well-known states of

Malaysia for its food, beaches, architecture and friendly people. The state has two parts: Penang Island, where the capital city George Town is located and Seberang Perai on the Peninsular. It is also the second smallest state in Malaysia by landmass. Penang Island is connected to the mainland via two of the longest bridges in Malaysia – the Penang Bridge and the Sultan Abdul Halim Muadzam Shah Bridge. The latter is also the longest over water bridge in Southeast Asia. Penang’s population in 2018 stood at 1.767 million. It is one of the most densely populated places in Malaysia and one of the country’s most urbanised states. Penang’s capital is George Town, the second largest city in Malaysia. Due to its historic core, it has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2008. Penang is one of the most industrialised states in the country and has the highest GDP per capita among all Malaysian states. It’s a cosmopolitan state with a highly diverse population that consists of Chinese, Malays, Indians, Eurasian, Siamese and expatriate communities.

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a leading state in Malaysia, be it in manufacturing, foreign investment, tourism products, arts and culture, social movement and others. Penang is embracing and making use of advancing technology to improve the lives of people working and living here, not just in the government sector. We should invest wisely and effectively in the new digital world that is upon us. A proper management of the digital revolution in the state is key to its future progress. I have also stressed that no part of Penang is to be left behind. Both Penang Island and Seberang Prai would equally be improved and make up the smart state that we want to create over the next decade. Many smart initiatives have been implemented and I expect more to roll out soon. As we are hosting WCIT2020, the time is right for the state to take a step forward by showcasing what technology can do to improve our lives and to share it with Penangites.

In the first half of this year, Penang did very well in terms of attracting FDI worth RM8.7 billion. Despite the existence of other competitive industrial regions in the country, how is Penang still able to attract foreign investors? Penang’s ecosystem and talent pool availability are the key factors that differentiate us from other states in attracting FDI and we expect these factors to continue to be our competitive edges. Specifically, due to Penang’s 50 years of industrial experience and the State government’s consistent focus on attracting strategic projects that bring in cutting-edge technologies, Penang has built up a very robust ecosystem and strong talent pool, particularly in the E&E, and semiconductor-related and supporting industries. In addition, Penang’s strength in manufacturing complements and synergies the service industry. Penang ranked Number 2 in terms of GBS (Global Business Services) investments, after Klang Valley. Particularly, there are more than 60 companies with GBS operations in Penang and about a third of them are captive players with manufacturing footprint here. There is also an increasing trend that MNCs with no physical manufacturing presence in Penang have opted to establish their shared services operations here. Also, Penang’s status as one of the most liveable cities in the world is also one of the key factors for MNCs’ investment decision as it will impact talents’ and expats willingness to work there. What is Penang doing to position itself as an ICT hub in the region? There are a few initiatives in the works. The State is working on a Digital Transformation Master Plan, which will detail the five identified pillars and board strategies that would enable Penang to have a supportive environment for the

pervasive use of digital technologies across the board. The Penang state government will soon be launching a road map that captures all our completed, ongoing and upcoming initiatives that transform the island into a Smart City. We are targeting to achieve the status of Smart International City by 2025. Penang is also aiming to be the first state in Malaysia to become a Gigabit City that offers high-speed internet and reliable broadband connection to businesses and local services. Furthermore, the State has been working closely with the federal government in implementing the measures that have been spelled out in the National Policy on Industry 4.0, Industry4WRD. Under Industry4WRD, there are 5 strategic enablers (funding, infrastructure, regulations, skills and talent, technology) in supporting the nation to transform and getting ready in the industry 4.0 era. What would you like to say to the delegates who will be coming for the WCIT2020 in Penang? WCIT2020 will be a platform where all forward-thinking conversations will take place. There will be opportunities to experience first-

hand on the latest in technology and innovations as well as being updated with trends and updated policies that keeps up with the pace of the digital economy. What’s more exciting is that we are pulling together all the interested stakeholders from Malaysia and Southeast Asia with a mission to collaborate. With pro-business policies and incentives, we are also keen to showcase our welldeveloped infrastructure and ready tech-specific talent pool. Whether you are a professional wanting a piece of the future or a business looking for opportunities or even a digital nomad looking at exploring another lifestyle, come on over to WCIT2020 – we have you covered.

Early bird pricing is at USD600 (RM2,455) per delegate. Available now till 31st March 2020. For more information on this and other matters such as booth showcase, sponsorship, partner etc. please email at WCIT2020 will take place from Sept 14 to 16, 2020 in Penang.



PENANG WILL BE THE FOCUS OF THE TECH WORLD IN 2020 Penang’s mayor, Dato’ Ar. Yew Tung Seong gives an insight into what visitors can expect when they come to Penang next year for Penang TECHFEST2020.

• By Sharmila Valli Narayanan • Photography Teh Young-Sun


ato’ Ar. Yew Tung Seong was sworn in as Penang’s third mayor last year. Next year in 2020, Penang will the focus of the tech world as it will host two major tech events: the WCIT2020 and the Penang TECHFEST2020. Penang TECHFEST2020 is a technology festival that is all about experiencing the latest innovation and technology from around the world. The festival aims to show how technology can better serve humanity. How is Penang preparing itself to play host to these events? What can the public and visitors expect? Penang has a vision to become an intelligent, creative and healthy city. The focus is on making the Penang a cleaner, greener, safer and healthier place to live, supported by excellent public amenities and infrastructure. This is why MBPP (Penang Island City Council) is now implementing data-driven delivery policies using the BDA and digital management systems. We want to create a digitalised city by leveraging resources and having people use technology. Our ongoing restoration projects within the UNESCO World Heritage site of George Town such as restoring the Town Hall, continuing with the back lane transformation project and the progressive restoration of

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heritage buildings will be almost completed in time to host Penang TECHFEST2020. This is a technology festival that is all about having an immersive adventure and discovering how a city, steeped in heritage, is able to work alongside the latest in technology. As festival goers are expected to walk around the heritage core zone to experience various pop-up tech events, we are certain that all the preparations to-date and with more in the pipeline will be sufficient to create an unforgettable experience for visitors. In terms of events, for ten days

during the Penang TECHFEST2020, multiple events will take place across the streets and buildings where the public can hear talks and experience for themselves such things as the use of 5G technology and how it will transform lives; autonomous cars, experience AR/VR/MR as well as learn about the most exciting and innovative start-ups and what’s happening in the marketplace. While the Penang TECHFEST2020 is going on, WCIT2020 will be held at a solar powered convention centre, the Setia SPICE Convention Centre, a flexible and modern business meeting space. It has six acres of roof

Penang TECHFEST2020 • To be held from 11 to 20th September 2020 in conjunction with the WCIT2020 which will be held from 14th to 16th September 2020. • Penang TECHFEST2020 aims to connect and bring together an

ecosystem of technologies, solutions, consumers and key decision makers who influence policies in city planning and mobility, and innovators as well as leading industry players who will be responsible in bringing about advancement and growth. The festival will among other things, feature a public showcase featuring 300 new and emerging techs, various activities on how technology is to be used for the common good as well as demonstrations of innovative applications that can be used by the government, business and society. During this 10 day festival, the buildings and streets of Penang will be turned into technological showcase sites where networking, competitions, panel discussions and immersive trials with emerging technologies will take place. Penang TECHFEST2020 is expected to attract 45,000 people, of which 10,000 are expected to be tourists. For more information, visit the website

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I HOPE WE CAN CONTINUE TO IMPLEMENT OUR GREEN INITIATIVES FOR A CLEANER, GREENER CITY. garden with special features such as bamboo corners that will be created as part of the WCIT2020 experience. Another interesting event to look out for is the annual grand gala and awards night of WITSA (World Information Technology and Services Alliance) which will be held along the Penang Second Bridge, the Sultan Abdul Halim Muadzam Shah Bridge.

What kind of impact do you expect Penang Techfest2020 to have in Penang? As we all know, tech start-ups today have taken the world by storm. A critical component for the continued and sustained success of Penang is embracing tech startups and Industry 4.0 including Big Data Analytics, Artificial Intelligence, Robotics, Fintech, Machine Learning, Cloud Computing and Internet of Things (IOT). With over 45,000 potential participants internationally and locally mainly comprising tech companies and start-ups, we hope to create synergies with our existing world-class electronics cluster and further enhance Penang to become the capital of innovation in Southeast Asia for start-ups and digital innovation communities around the world. The platform provided by Penang TECHFEST2020 will facilitate exchange of ideas amongst local and international players and encourage new innovation. We want Penang to be known as the place to be for enabling and empowering solutions.






AS THE STARTUP AND DIGITAL INNOVATION CENTRE OF SOUTHEAST ASIA Dato’ Loo Lee Lian, the CEO of InvestPenang tells My.IT how Invest Penang plans to keep Penang the favourite destination of hi-tech FDIs.

• By Sharmila Valli Narayanan • Photography Teh Young-Sun


nvestPenang was established in 2004 as a non-profit entity of the Penang State Government with the primary purpose of promoting investments within Penang. As the principal investment promotion agency of the State, its objectives are to provide comprehensive information on Penang’s investment opportunities and facilitate investors’ new operations set up at every stage. Over the years, InvestPenang’s role has expanded to include a growing number of state initiatives in attracting, developing and retaining talents, assisting SMEs to move up the value chain and facilitating the development of the tech start-up community. InvestPenang plays a critical role in advising the state government on planning and implementing industrial policies. Dato’ Loo Lee Lian was appointed as the CEO of InvestPenang in 2010. Under her tenure some of the achievements of InvestPenang are the SMART Center Penang (Small & Medium Enterprise Market Advisory, Resource and Training Centre). This is an initiative

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established by InvestPenang to assist and to be the point of contact to SMEs in Penang. In 2015, InvestPenang introduced its tech startup launchpad @CAT Penang, with the aim of developing the local entrepreneurs and tech start-up community, specifically through its programmes, co-working space and start-up accelerators. Through the Career Assistance and Talent (CAT) Centre, InvestPenang launched the Penang Future Foundation (PFF) in 2015, a scholarship programme awarded by the Penang State Government to outstanding and deserving Malaysians to pursue their undergraduate studies in Malaysia. This is one of the State’s initiatives to stem the tide of brain drain and nurture Penang as a talent hub. In March 2018, InvestPenang launched Penang i4. 0 Seed Fund, which is a RM4 million program to fund qualified high potential, early stage technology start-ups and enhance the growth of Penang’s tech ecosystem. So far 16 companies have been awarded RM1.7 million under Stream # 1 which is targeted

to tech related activities. A further RM1.4 million have been awarded to 11 companies under Stream #2, which is targeted to IoT and online marketplace activities. The efforts of InvestPenang have paid off as Penang contributed 35% of Malaysia’s total investment in the first half of 2019, which is the highest among the states. “In terms of trade, Penang contributed close to 30% of Malaysia’s total export in 2018. Notably, Penang recorded US$23 billion trade surplus in 2018, which represents 79% of Malaysia’s total trade surplus, confirming that Penang’s manufacturing industry is a high value added industry,” says Dato’ Loo. How does Penang aim to hold its position as the leading hi-tech industrial region in the country? Penang state has excelled in the areas of electrical and electronics, semiconductors, medical devices, LED/solid-state lighting devices, renewable energy and aerospace/ avionic industries over the past decades. To ensure that Penang to remain as a preferred location for

high quality investments, the State will continue to focus on strengthening the talent pool and ecosystem in accordance with the global trends. Note that Penang’s strength is no longer restricted to manufacturing. The state also emphasizes on growing the talent and ecosystem for R&D activities as well as Global Business Services (GBS) and knowledge-intensive operations, which could complement the manufacturing industry. Dell, Intel, Motorola amongst others have made Penang as one of their key bases for R&D activities. The versatile workforce and complete supply chain in Penang enable companies to have end-toend operations here, which are the key factors for investment decisions. Of course, the consistent upgrade of our infrastructure to cater to the industry’s needs and the strong support service from the government (both state and federal levels) would ensure us to remain competitive. What is your objective and vision for Invest Penang? InvestPenang began with the sole purpose of promoting Penang as an ideal investment location. Today, our role has expanded to also include a growing number of state initiatives in attracting, developing and retaining talents, assisting SMEs to move up the value chain and facilitating the development of the tech start-up community. In line with our objectives, InvestPenang is commited to continuously promote Penang as the location of choice for high value investments and be the driver of technology and industry for sustainable economic growth and prosperity for the people of Penang and Malaysia.

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TAKING BUSINESS EVENTS TO GREATER HEIGHTS IN PENANG Dubbed the Pearl of the Orient, Penang is renowned for its tourism and business events allure. In June this year, it made headways when it was listed second on CNNTravel’s “Best places to visit for the ultimate Asia experience”. Ashwin Gunasekaran, Chief Executive Officer of the Penang Convention & Exhibition Bureau expounds on the excellent potential of the business events industry in the state.

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he island State has a good combination of tourist attractions and excellent infrastructure, making it one of the top choices for both leisure activities and business events in Southeast Asia. Living up to its status as an international city, Penang is not only a leading medical tourism destination but a hub for technology and engineering with more than 470 multinationals operating within the state. Ashwin Gunasekaran, Chief Executive Officer of the Penang Convention & Exhibition Bureau (PCEB) states that last year the business events industry in Penang raked in about RM1.3 billion in estimated economic impact (EEI) demonstrating a growth of 62% from RM808 million in 2016. Penang hosted 2,733 business events in 2018, a steady increase from the 2,511 events in 2017, which goes to show that the island is increasingly among the top picks for business events in the region. Penang hosted 233 international business events and 109,250 delegates in 2018 alone, while international association meetings accounted for 31% of the business with a total of 20,601 delegates from

“PCEB is instrumental in marketing and promoting business events in Penang, while also carrying out telemarketing activities and roadshows in developing markets across the region,” Ashwin Gunasekaran, Chief Executive Officer of the Penang Convention & Exhibition Bureau (PCEB)

around the world. At the same time, international corporate meetings accounted for 35.8% of total business with 86,664 delegates. Ashwin expects an EEI of RM1.6 billion in 2019, and a 30% increase in the number of business events held in Penang. Set up three years ago, PCEB is focused on driving the business events industry in Penang and providing strategic direction, while establishing partnerships with industry players both locally and abroad. With 13 years of industry experience in hospitality and business events, Ashwin has been actively working to attract business events to the state. The Bureau also actively hosts familiarisation trips for potential organisers and industry players, as well as event planners, in a bid to raise awareness on Penang’s allure as a business events hub. To strengthen these efforts and business events organisers, PCEB also introduced the Privilege Penang, support programme at IMEX Frankfurt, comprising two exclusive programmes – the Meetings & Conferences and Incentives. In July it also launched the Penang 2020: BE Unfiltered’ campaign which runs until December 2020. Furthermore in September PCEB signed a strategic partnership with The Meetings Show (TMS) London as its official show partner for the upcoming BE @ Penang 2019. The partnership brings UK’s largest corporate meetings and incentives tradeshow

and Penang’s homegrown business events conference closer. Ashwin states that PCEB is also a member of the International Congress and Convention Association (ICCA) Malaysia, which helps the bureau strengthen its presence and create greater impact for the industry in Penang through shared resources. In December the island state will host the inaugural ICCA Asia Pacific Chapter Summit 2019. In 2020, Penang will welcome international delegates and visitors to the World Congress on Information Technology 2020 (WCIT2020), hosted by PCEB. “This event is a key example of an international association meeting that Penang is targetting,” he says adding that WCIT2020 can easily attract about 4,000 delegates to the state which in turn will boost the local industries. Ashwin explains that the state’s established and mature infrastructure is an excellent proposition for the business events industry. In addition, Penang hosts a variety of industries, and is home to the world’s first hybrid solar-powered convention centre, the

Setia SPICE Convention Centre which has capacity to host 30,000 people. In 2023, Penang is set to welcome the brand new Penang Waterfront Convention Centre, a state-of-theart seaside facility that has been designed according to world-class standards, and offers 25,083 sq meters of exhibition space, with a 7,060 sq meter multipurpose hall, which is the largest in Penang. This is complemented by The Light City, which hosts a mall, luxury hotels, an office tower, and two premium condominiums. This is on the back of upgrading and expansion works at the Penang International Airport to increase its capacity. By 2022, Penang is poised to open 10 hotels to cater to the growing needs of the business and leisure industry. As Penang continues to attract regional attention, PCEB is committed to delivering greater value to the business events industry. In pursuing its strategic aspirations, the bureau aims to look beyond numbers and focus on the long-term growth prospects and business potential of Penang in the business events industry. Meanwhile, 2020 holds an exciting year for Penang with international events lined up such as the 70th Malaysia Nurses Association AGM in March, the IFLA 2020 World Landscape Architects Summit in August, and the World Congress of IT 2020 in September. For details, visit www.pceb. my.

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WCIT COMES TO MALAYSIA AGAIN Penang WCIT2020 will be the second time that Malaysia is playing host to WCIT. The first WCIT in Malaysia was held in the Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre from May 18th to 22nd May 2008. My. It looks back at WCIT 2008 and what to expect from WCIT2020.

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Pictures of WCIT2008 held in Kuala Lumpur


he World Congress on Information Technology (WCIT) is the largest and most reputable international event among worldwide IT leaders. Known as the Olympics of the world’s information technology industry, it is a signature event of the World Information Technology and Services Alliance (WITSA) since 1978. When Malaysia was announced as the host for WCIT2008, there was great excitement because it was the first time the event was being held in Asia.

KUALA LUMPUR WCIT2008 The Kuala Lumpur WCIT2008 held from 18th to 22nd May 2008 was considered one of the best WCIT

events as Malaysia rolled out the red carpet in style and pizzazz to welcome the delegates and visitors to the event. A total of over 2,500 participants from over 80 countries attended the five-day event. The underlying message of the Kuala Lumpur WCIT2008 was how ICT should be used to wwbridge the digital divide. The conference was opened by the then Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi. One of the main speakers was Intel Chairman Craig Barrett, whose talk was titled ‘Global impact issue: A world of opportunity powered by technology.’ Tech legend Bill Gates, then the Chairman of Microsoft, made an appearance at the event as a 15-foot

holographic image much to the delight and amazement of the attendees. According to the press reports of the time, he said that the “WCIT 2008 was the inflection point for the world, rallying emerging nations to march forward in tune with ICT.” The Kuala Lumpur WCIT2008 was highly successful as it secured total sales and investments worth RM8.3 billion with more than 20,000 jobs created. Over 800 business meetings were held over the same duration capturing over RM1.24 billion of business opportunities for the Malaysian ICT industry. Potential investments identified through these meetings were worth RM2 billion, with 10 FDI and 26 DDI with an additional 13,000 jobs potentiated.

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WHAT WILL HAPPEN AT THE PENANG WCIT2020? Penang WCIT2020 includes technology showcases and discussions of legal, political and economic trends affecting IT business processes, presentations of innovative solutions and B2B meetings. The conference will bring together high-level officials from different countries, heads of multinational organisations, universities and scientific research centres, non-governmental organisations’ representatives and business C-suites, business visionary leaders as well as forward thinking organisations who wish to stay ahead of technology development. About 4,000 people are

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expected to attend the conference and they include captains of industry, leaders of government and academics that span across over 80 countries and with over 160 global speakers. Minister Gobind Singh said that that Malaysia hosting the WCIT2020 is good for the country. “This is a timely boost to our campaign and our commitment to promote the digital economy and ICT in Malaysia as the new driver of development,” he said. “Hosting WCIT2020 in our country is a timely and opportune move and provides a good platform for Malaysia to showcase our achievement as well as our vision for the future... Platforms such as WCIT2020 will increase awareness of the possibilities that the Internet and other ICTs can bring to societies and economies, as well as ways to bridge the digital divide.”

WHAT IS THE THEME FOR PENANG WCIT2020? Penang WCIT2020 Malaysia positions itself as the gateway to Southeast Asia, CONNECTING THE WORLD — connectivity that is beyond just possibilities — limitless, borderless and continuous with the advent of new technologies that Malaysia is a vital driver for, as the hub, heart and access to Southeast Asia. Penang WCIT 2020 is organised by PIKOM, the National ICT Association of Malaysia, and enabled by the Ministry of Communication and Multimedia Malaysia and the Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC) and hosted by the Penang state government.


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1 UTAMA GOES CASHLESS With the official launch recently of its digital 1PAY E-Wallet and online shopping portal by Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng, 1Utama Shopping Centre becomes the first retail mall in Malaysia to develop its own retail E-wallet and E-commerce platform.


he 1PAY E-Wallet is an enhancement of the shopping mall’s existing loyalty programme ONECARD Privileges membership card and with 1PAY, shoppers can scan and pay with their E-wallet while earning instant ONECARD loyalty points known as UPoints. This full-service e-payment is fast and secure, allowing cash balance of up to a maximum of RM1,500 to be stored. Other features include options to link debit/credit cards/ bank account, top-up, receive and transfer cash to other E-wallet users and e-Voucher rewards. “In line with the government’s vision and migration to a cashless e-Economy, 1 Utama has set out to develop 1PAY and ONESHOP in hopes of digitalising the retail mall landscape,” said Tan Sri Teo Chiang Kok, Director of 1Utama Shopping Centre, at the launch recently. The event was officially launched by Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng. Also at the launch were Dato’ Ng Wan Peng, Chief Operating Officer of Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC), Chairman of National ICT Association of Malaysia (PIKOM), Ganesh Kumar Bangah and Tony Pua, Member of Parliament for Damansara. 1PAY isn’t just confined to 1Utama but can also be used at other commercial locations within

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Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng (left) and Tan Sri Teo Chiang Kok, Director of 1Utama Shopping Centre at the launch.

Bandar Utama such as One World Hotel, Centrepoint and The Club. Since its rollout in March this year, Tan Sri Teo said that 30 per cent of retailers have signed up with the 1PAY system. The shopping complex hopes to achieve 80 to 90 per cent by December 2020. allows the shopping complex to grow and expand its omnichannel marketing especially with the explosive rise of E-commerce globally, by combining online – PC, mobile and tablet devices – with offline instore experiences. “With,

customers enjoy the ease and convenience shopping even from home. While our brick-and-mortar stores still dominates in appealing to people who appreciate the ability to touch and try on a product in-store. This way we achieve the best of both worlds to nurture more sales and engagement,” added Tan Sri Teo. He stated that by bringing 1 Utama online and around the world, ONESHOP allowed the shopping complex to cross beyond borders to reach customers worldwide, who with a click of a button would be able to shop from retailers in the mall. “This gives our tenants greater

exposure in overseas markets, while also bringing Malaysian brands to the world and encouraging tourism for Malaysia,” he said. Meanwhile, Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng said the 1PAY and ONESHOP services were in line with Malaysia’s 10-year plan of migrating the country towards becoming a cashless society, with the support of a strong domestic retail industry He pointed out that the outlook for shopping centres and the retail industry as a whole this year looked favourable. Data from the Department of Statistics showed a 5.7 per cent increase in wholesale and retail trade value this year to RM112.5 billion, compared to RM106.5 billion in 2018. “The overall 5.7 per cent growth was driven by the expansion of retail sales, which grew 7.1 per cent in July 2019 to RM46.2 billion, from RM43.4 billion a year ago,” he said at the launch. Retail sales for January-July 2019 increased 7.9 per cent to RM308.5 billion from the RM285.8 billion recorded during the same period a year ago. The Malaysian Shopping Malls Association forecasted a 4.5 per cent growth. He added that the retail sector was not about e-commerce versus physical stores anymore. “It is now about having a combination of both online and offline retail solutions,

and it may even involve online-tooffline strategy to deliver Malaysians with the best shopping experience.”

IR4.0 & E-PAYMENT SYSTEM Giving that the International Data Corporation (IDC) predicted that by 2022, more than 21 per cent of Malaysia’s GDP would be digitalised against the current level of 18 per cent, Malaysian businesses need to prepare for this transition. “Either we adapt to the changes brought about by IR4.0 or else risk being left behind,” Lim said. With MDEC leading the country’s digital economy, the national e-commerce sector gross valueadded grew by 14.3 per cent to RM85.8 billion in 2017 from RM75

billion in 2016, with e-commerce of non-ICT industries being the main contributor at RM68.9 billion. Last year Malaysia’s e-commerce sales was valued at USD2.4 billion while the digital industry attracted investments of more than RM320 billion. “We must fully leverage on our infrastructure such as the Digital Free Trae Zone to boost cross-border trade and position Malaysia as a transhipment hub for e-commerce logistics to further grow the industry,” he stated. From Sept 27 to Oct 3, ONESHOP will be participating in Malaysia’s online sale FPX #MYCYBERSALE ASIA organised by MDEC and PIKOM.

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This year’s #MYCYBERSALE 2019 promises to be different with Taiwan joining in this year’s event, and prizes galore such as two Proton cars and RM50, 000 cash vouchers to be won!


hen #MYCYBERSALE started six years ago, no one foresaw that one day it would go on to be Malaysia’s largest online sale. Every year the revenue generated via #MYCYBERSALE has been going up. This year it is expected to bring in RM500 million during the one week sales. The media event organised to announce #MYCYBERSALE 2019 was graced by the presence of Ganesh Kumar Bangah, Chairman of PIKOM, David Hsu, Director, Economic Division, Taipei Economic

22 MY•IT

FPX #MYCYBERSALE ASIA 2019 at a Glance:

• •

Held from midnight 27th September till 3rd October 2019. This year’s event sees FPX as the Title Partner. FPX is operated by PayNet, Malaysia’s premier online payment used by more than 21,000 merchants. #MYCYBERSALE 2019 for the first sees the co-operation of the online shopping festival between Taiwan and Malaysia. The inclusion of FPX and Taiwan in this year’s online sale has resulted in this year’s event being called FPX #MYCYBERSALE ASIA 2019. This online shopping cooperation with Malaysia will see more than 60 Taiwanese merchants representing 2,000 brands offering unique products during the sale. Categories of items being sold include electronics, fashion, children’s apparel, travel, health and beauty, home and living, food and beverage, wellness services, home appliances and sporting equipment. 1500 Malaysian and Taiwanese merchants have registered for this year’s online shopping festival. This year’s online sales festival is expected to reach RM500 million in Gross Merchandise Value (GMV). Export revenue to grow to RM80 million. Prizes to be won include two units of Proton X70 and RM50,000 cash vouchers to be won with online purchase of at least RM5 payment via FPX. The total amount of prizes including the cars and cash vouchers is RM270, 000! Other partners for this event include Pinnacle Partners, Commerce Asia and Fusionex. Premier Partners are CJ Century, Unifi; Gold Partner is Malaysian Productivity Council (MPC) and CDRI.

• •

From left: Director of e-Commerce MDEC Song Hock Soon, PayNet CEO Peter Schiesser, Deputy Minister of Communications & Multimedia Malaysia, YB Eddin Syazlee Shith, PIKOM Chairman Ganesh Kumar Bangah and Director, Economic Division, Taipei Economic & Cultural Office in Malaysia, David Hsu.

and Cultural Office in Malaysia, Peter Schiesser, Group Chief Executive Officer of PayNet, the Malaysian Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC) Director of eCommerce, Song Hock Soon, and attended by over 250 eCommerce merchants and industry partners. The guest of honour was YB Eddin Syazlee Shith, the Deputy Minister of Communications and Multimedia Malaysia, who also launched the FPX #MYCYBERSALE 2019. In his opening remarks, Ganesh Kumar stated that the online shopping festival this year was extra special as it was the first time it was fully private-sector funded. “It took us six years to reach this far, making this an industry-led event as has been the original intent from the very beginning.”

TAIWAN JOINS #MYCYBERSALE 2019 Thanks to PIKOM’s strength in international relations, this year’s online shopping event sees for the first time, the participation of Taiwan’s Commerce Development Research Institute (CDRI). David Hsu hailed this co-operation between Taiwan and Malaysia as a “model for future expansion” and “also the foundation of creating a regional

online shopping festival among ASEAN countries”. Peter Schiesser, speaking on behalf of FPX, said that the organisation was extremely privileged to collaborate with PIKOM as the Title Partner. “FPX is one of the most popular models of online payment in Malaysia with more than 15 million transactions monthly,” he said.

ROOM FOR ECOMMERCE TO GROW Despite the rapid growth of eCommerce in the country, the full potential of it has not been fully realised, said Song Hock Soon. The GDP contribution of domestic eCommerce sub-sector is still small compared to the China and the United States. But the good news, he said, was that the online retail sale in Malaysia is expected to grow at a rate of 23% per year till 2021. Deputy Minister YB Eddin Syazlee Shith said that e-Commerce is one of the main drivers of digital economy in Malaysia and the world. “Online sales platform like #MYCYBERSALE 2019 will help increase the country’s export. With participation from Taiwan and ASEAN countries, #MYCYBERSALE has the potential to become one of the largest online sales events.”

• • • •

MY•IT 23

Profile for Harini Management Services Sdn Bhd

my.IT|Vol 2|No 4|2019|YAB Chow Kon Yeow  

MY.IT is the official publication of PIKOM which was formed in 1986. PIKOM plays a vital role to steer the ICT industry in Malaysia in the r...

my.IT|Vol 2|No 4|2019|YAB Chow Kon Yeow  

MY.IT is the official publication of PIKOM which was formed in 1986. PIKOM plays a vital role to steer the ICT industry in Malaysia in the r...