31 July 2020 Startups

NIA illustrates the three-phase survival kit for startups by joining hands with Government Saving Bank to offer financial loans for small business and working with TED Fund and InnoSpace for capital.

June 22, 2020 at True Digital Park, the online discussion of District C Talk for knowledge and experience exchange among people in startups, on “Disruptive Innovation for Startup Opportunities”. The EP1 “Startup Rocking Dolls” joined by travel tech Tourkrub and event tech Zipevent, both startups were directly affected by the Covid-19 pandemic, talking how they cope with the crisis which will be a guideline for startups. According to Pariwat Wongsamran, Director of Entrepreneur and Enterprise, Director of Startup Thailand at National Innovation Agency (Public Organization), digital transformation along with fund raising, government procurement, business model improvement, cashflow, and internal management, all these will prove leadership of the startups

Three phases to help the startups are: 

  1. Short-term by offering financial support through a “financial loan” of NIA’s institutes partners such as Government Saving Bank. The startups with new business model can be given 1.5 million-baht funding from Technology and Innovation-Based Enterprise Development Fund (TED Fund). Moreover, InnoSpace, a partner of NIA, also provides 3 million-baht capital for each startup.
  2. Middle-term for restoring after lockdown by having startups be “business partners” with the public sector for government procurement, startups therefore need to adjust business model from “B2C” to be “B2B” due to a change of market situation. Startups need to work together so that they can better access to capital sources or government assist.
  3. Long-term for strengthening startup business. 

“It is the global crisis, not only Thailand, startups must rethink and have new business models. They should change a thought that startup is the winner from fund pitching, but actually it is a marathon runner, who can survive and grow for the marathon running is the real startup,” Pariwat said.

Startups should “hibernate” downsizing the business Jakapan Luethiwat, Co-founder and Managing Director at Tourkrub, online travel agent, said customer satisfaction management, cashflow management and team communication are important for business during the crisis. Tourism is the first affected business and will be the last sector to restore, the self-management for survival is that they must “hibernate” until the economic situation to be recovered and they must be downsized along with looking for an assist from the government. Startups need to change their viewpoints and cannot focus on the business growth only, but manage cashflow, risk insurance and saving, focusing on long-term stability for any unexpected incidents. This time is a right time to do business review and long-term growth planning and be prompt to deal with any risk. “Thai startups are smart, none is dead, but they are in hibernation stage for survival, saving cost and may do something else for 12 months and get back once market recovered,” said Jakapan.

Parote Densakul, Co-founder and Managing Director at Zipevent, event marketing and management platform, said the company has changed its business going for online and offline, and “Hybridge” due to a high potential of online and offline event organizing. Cashflow management and new business channel are essential because the company have to take care employees during the crisis and have them upskilled or reskilled be able to survive in the changing world