Technology events seem to be back in full swing after a couple of years of virtual and hybrid versions kept the industry going. This can be seen as a positive, as more events and more business dealings leads to a healthier economy overall.

One of the most interesting things we are seeing is an increase in interest for Southeast Asia’s technology brands. One such large scale event is BEYOND Expo, which is on its third iteration of the event with last year’s being a metaverse event.

To find out why Southeast Asia has been a more attractive region for technology innovation, we spoke to Dr. Gang LU, the founder and CEO of TechNode Group in China. He is one of the pioneers of China’s technology news industry and a technology entrepreneur himself.

Murli Ravi from Tin Men sees potential in Southeast Asia’s B2B ecosystem

As we delve deeper into the issues, for those interested in attending the event, this year’s BEYOND Expo will be held in The Venetian Macao Convention and Exhibition Centre and has more than 500 speakers, 600 media publications and 800 exhibitors attending from across the globe. Participants can present their latest innovations and tech solutions, exchange knowledge and insights with other attendees and speakers, or network with other like-minded individuals, with good representation from the Southeast Asian region.

Booths at the BEYOND Expo
Booths at the BEYOND Expo

Congrats on the bringing back BEYOND Expo. Can you give us a brief explanation on what we can expect?

Thank you very much! We are thrilled to be bringing back BEYOND Expo to Macau in May 2023. Attendees can expect a truly exciting and dynamic event, featuring more than 800 exhibitors, 500 speakers, and over 600 international and local media. The conference will showcase the latest technological innovations across a range of sectors, from HealthTech and ConsumerTech to SustainabilityTech.

We are also working closely with our community partners to ensure that the local startup ecosystem is included in the event, and are excited to feature emerging technologies and innovative startups from Asia and beyond. Attendees will have the opportunity to connect with leading innovative companies, venture capital firms, accelerators, ecosystem builders, and media, and to participate in a range of interactive activities.

One of our key priorities for the event is to provide a platform for attendees, exhibitors, and speakers to share their experiences and knowledge, and to facilitate meaningful connections and collaborations. We are investing in new technologies and tools to make it easier for attendees to explore the latest innovations and to connect with one another, and we are committed to ensuring that the event is accessible and inclusive for all.

Overall, we are incredibly excited about this year’s BEYOND Expo, and can’t wait to welcome attendees from across the region to what is sure to be one of the most dynamic and impactful technology expos of the year.

What are some of the Southeast Asian companies we can expect to see at the conference?

We are excited to showcase some of the most innovative and dynamic companies from Southeast Asia and beyond at BEYOND Expo in May 2023. Our community partners and network of ecosystem builders have been hard at work identifying the most promising startups and emerging technologies from the region, and we are confident that attendees will be blown away by the range and quality of the companies on display.

In terms of HealthTech, we are seeing exciting advancements in areas such as telemedicine and health analytics, and are working closely with leading startups and other innovators to bring these technologies to the forefront of the conference.

In ConsumerTech, we are seeing a range of exciting innovations, from social commerce to immersive media and gaming. We are particularly excited about the potential for Southeast Asian startups to leverage these technologies to reach new audiences and to create innovative new products and services.

Finally, in Sustainability, we are seeing a range of exciting startups and technologies focused on tackling some of the biggest environmental and social challenges facing the region and the world. From renewable energy and circular economy solutions, these companies are at the forefront of the global sustainability movement and are poised to make a real impact in the years to come.

Some of the exemplary companies that will be present include Carsome, Aerodyne and Pluang, FastCo, Enlitho and Wellous.

At BEYOND Expo, we are also proud to partner with several Southeast Asian community partners, such as Plug and Play APAC, Singapore Management University, Techsauce, WORQ, Jetro, beSUCCESS, and top VC firms such as Openspace Ventures, Gobi Partners, and Kairous Capital.

Overall, we are incredibly excited about the Southeast Asian companies and startups that will be featured at BEYOND Expo, and believe that they will play a key role in shaping the future of technology and innovation in the region and beyond.

BEYOND Expo 2021 Smart Mobility discussion
BEYOND Expo 2021 Smart Mobility discussion

Why are you looking at the technology companies from Southeast Asia to attend BEYOND?

Southeast Asia has become an increasingly important player in the global technology landscape, with the region experiencing rapid growth and innovation in recent years. According to a report by Google, Temasek, and Bain & Company, Southeast Asia’s internet economy is expected to reach USD 360 billion by 2025, with technology startups playing a significant role in driving this growth. At BEYOND Expo, we believe it is crucial to showcase the advancements made by Southeast Asian companies and provide a platform for them to connect with international partners and investors.

We are proud to work with a range of community partners and organizations across Southeast Asia to identify and showcase the most exciting and impactful technologies emerging from the region. From HealthTech and ConsumerTech to Sustainability-Tech, we believe that Southeast Asian companies are at the forefront of some of the most exciting developments in technology today.

By highlighting the innovative work being done by Southeast Asian companies and providing a platform for them to connect with international investors, entrepreneurs, and other stakeholders, we hope to help position the region as a key player in the global technology landscape. We believe that BEYOND Expo represents an unparalleled opportunity for Southeast Asian companies to showcase their innovations, build meaningful connections, and grow their businesses on a global scale.

What are some of the emerging technologies or innovation you are seeing coming from Southeast Asia?

At BEYOND, we are constantly monitoring the emerging technology trends in Southeast Asia and beyond. In terms of HealthTech, we are seeing a growing focus on telemedicine and digital health solutions, particularly in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Monk’s Hill Ventures, a venture capital firm based in Singapore, highlights that Southeast Asia is in a prime position to lead the way in healthcare innovation on a global scale. This is due in part to the projected healthcare expenditure in the region, which is expected to reach USD 740 billion by 2025.

In the ConsumerTech space, we are seeing significant growth in e-commerce, social commerce, and fintech, particularly in countries such as Indonesia, Thailand, and Vietnam. According to a report by Google, Temasek, and Bain & Company, the e-commerce market in Southeast Asia is driving most of the market’s growth, contributing more than half of the projected overall internet economy value in 2025. We are also seeing a rise in demand for digital entertainment, particularly among younger consumers.

In terms of Sustainability-Tech, we are seeing a growing focus on renewable energy, smart cities, and circular economy solutions. For example, according to a report by the International Renewable Energy Agency, Southeast Asia has the potential to become a leader in renewable energy, where clean energy technologies, particularly solar photovoltaic (PV), wind, and grids, received approximately 40% of the annual average energy investment of around USD 70 billion in Southeast Asia between 2016 and 2020. We are also seeing a rise in interest in circular economy models, particularly in response to concerns around waste management and environmental sustainability.

Overall, we believe that Southeast Asia is a particularly exciting and dynamic region for technology, with a range of emerging trends and innovations that have the potential to make a real impact on the global stage. We are thrilled to be able to showcase some of these exciting developments at the upcoming BEYOND Expo where we help connect Southeast Asian startups and innovators with a global audience.

What’s next for the conference?

We are incredibly excited about the upcoming BEYOND Expo in May 2023, and we are already planning for what’s next for the conference. One of our main priorities is to continue expanding and diversifying the range of exhibitors, speakers, and attendees at the event, to ensure that it remains one of the most vibrant and dynamic technology expos in the region.

To this end, we are working closely with our community partners to identify emerging technologies and innovative startups that can be featured at the event, as well as seeking out new partnerships and collaborations with leading venture capital firms, accelerators, and ecosystem builders. We are also exploring new formats and structures for the event, such as roundtable discussions and workshops, to provide even more opportunities for learning, collaboration, and networking.

Another key focus for us is to enhance the overall attendee experience at the conference. We are investing in new technologies and tools to make it easier for attendees to connect with one another, explore the latest innovations, and get the most out of their time at the event. We are also committed to making the conference more accessible and inclusive and are exploring ways to ensure that a diverse range of voices and perspectives are represented at the event.

Ultimately, our goal for BEYOND Expo is to continue to be at the forefront of the technology landscape in Asia and beyond, providing a platform for the most innovative and forward-thinking companies and entrepreneurs to showcase their ideas and solutions, and driving meaningful change in the industry and the world. We are confident that the 2023 event will be the best yet, and we can’t wait to see what the future holds for the conference.