Virtual Business Launchpad (VBL) is a programme whereby budding entrepreneurs from multiple verticals and countries come together to spark invaluable ideas. Companies enrolled in VBL are known as the Stormers. We are very honoured to have companies from various verticals to be our Batch #1 Stormers. They are from Manufacturing, Dental, Internet of Things (IoT) SaaS, and Event Tech. There will be multiple editions of VBL with the first batch focusing on Market Entry.
Depending on the editions, the programme ranges from 4 to 12 weeks. In some situations, the Stormers may opt for a continuation of services to further propel them in Southeast Asia.
So what exactly did Batch #1 Stormers in VBL do?
Week #1: Plan
In the first week, our Stormers learnt about planning for successful market entry. It is essential to plan well when the costs to develop a market tend to be significant. Therefore in the first week, through the first On-demand Masterclass, Stormers learned about the key components necessary to scale up a company fast.
Scalability refers to the ability to increase output without increasing input proportionately. Through a series of videos, we explored the fundamentals of Scaling Up Fast, namely People, Strategy, and Cash.
Identifying a company’s core value is very important for organisational alignment and attracting the right talents. Hiring unsuitable people may result in low retention rates, a waste of resources, and a loss of opportunities.
Creating a competitive and sustainable strategy is necessary for any scalable business. Our Stormers learnt about the various steps of developing the appropriate strategy for their business.
Budgeting well is also key in maintaining healthy cash flow to sustain the business and reap the rewards of scaling.
In the later part of the week, the Stormers were guided in our live workshop step-by-step to prepare for market entry. The definition of market entry is more than just venturing into another country, as it also entails selling a product in a new market, innovation, and transformation.
Using known brands as case studies, we demonstrated the three key steps – Create, Test, and Scale – for successful market entry, and also common mistakes as exemplified by real-world failed attempts. By adopting our personalised worksheets and templates including scenario analysis, and business plan template, the Stormers could evaluate their own company and discover ideas on developing a new market.
Week #2: Ideate
In the second week, the Stormers were required to identify areas that can enhance their business as a whole. This often intertwined with the concept – Business Transformation. The only constant is change. The digital realm is disrupting all parts of the value chain of any organisation. Business transformation is a change management strategy that aims to align people, technology, and processes of a company to maximise value to critical stakeholders.
In the second masterclass, Stormers were given the guide on mapping out an ecosystem or a platform business model to spot areas to enhance on. This would provide the Stormers a clearer picture of their business and aids them in creating an ecosystem that would accelerate the business transformation process.
Week #3: Create a System
In the third week, the Stormers learnt about identifying different aspects of the business to be systemised. The purpose is to facilitate the execution and ensure minimum operational disruptions when entering and expanding a new market.
One of the aspects to be looked into will be team creation. Through our third On-demand Masterclass, the Stormers got to understand more about having a strong work team, which often increase the success of development in the new market. It is crucial to identify and develop personnel with a growth mindset. The Stormers and their respective team members should learn more about one another. This will help in comprehending the personalities, complementing one another by tapping on the appropriate strengths, and filling the gaps to achieve the overall goals of the organisation. In addition, creating career paths for employees is essential as this can also foster the relationships among team members.
Other than forming a capable team, one must also look into the processes. The Stormers were guided in our online workshop on identifying processes to be systemised in order to maximise efficiency. Hands-on activities and discussions were held during the workshop, allowing them to have a clearer picture of their corporate structure and learn some challenges faced by others.
Talk to us to find out more how exactly we helped these Stormers and what are they doing right now.
Week #4: Perform
When in a new market, it is vital to obtain sales to sustain the operations and plan ahead. Therefore, in the fourth On-demand Masterclass, the Stormers were guided on how to convert potential leads into actual sales. One needs to hone this skill well in order to achieve great results, keeping the business sustainable and profitable.
Besides learning effective selling, it is also important to do branding on the individual and the company. In fact, most of the time, when entering a foreign market, no one will immediately recognise or know a new brand. It is often through constant exposures and branding to be noticeable in the public. Hence we have organised a themed and structured webinar for the Stormers to participate and share their experiences. The whole process was recorded and served as marketing collateral for further branding. Multiple clips were taken on individual Stormers for promotional purposes.
The event was a success, attracting numerous parties to gain insights on building a robust ecosystem. What are the conditions and challenges when building an ecosystem? What and who should be involved in this building process? How can one start building? All these were well answered by the Stormers. You may refer to this article for the full coverage.
All in all, these 4 weeks of guidance, consultancy, and training have driven the Stormers to emerge stronger in the aspect of market entry. The elements can be applied to their current and potential businesses, helping them in identifying various gaps and what to look out for when entering a foreign market. We will like to thank the Stormers for their support and hope for the best in their businesses.
Currently, we are recruiting the second batch of Stormers for VBL and the programme will start in Q3 2020. If you plan to enter Southeast Asia and want to accelerate growth with efficient use of resources, talk to us to find out how we can help you.
You can check out our VBL page to find out more.
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