Witness the GOAB 3 launch of the Philippine startup road map
Silicon Valley startup guru Dave McClure has urged geeks here and abroad to attend the third Geeks on a Beach on Aug. 20-21, 2015 in world’s best beach destination in a country primed to become the next startup destination.
“See you in Boracay!” said McClure, the founder and president of 500 Startups. This entrepreneur based in Silicon Valley is a super angel investor of tech startups who describes himself in Twitter as “founder and troublemaker @500startups.” He was one of the most awaited speakers during the GOAB 2 held at the Moevenpick Beach Resort in Cebu last year.
The Geeks on a Beach or GOAB is an annual international tech confab that gathers hundreds of startup techies and stakeholders in beach settings. GOAB 1 happened in Boracay. The second confab transpired in Cebu. GOAB 2015 goes back to Boracay.
McClure is prominent in the tech world as the founder of the 500 Startups, a global accelerator and seed fund investing firm that has set its eyes on Asia as one of the fastest growing tech communities in the world.
Before founding 500 Startups in 2010, McClure was already an angel investor frequently investing and advising in startups. He was also a consultant of several high-tech companies like Microsoft and Intel and worked for companies such as PayPal and Facebook.
(The video clip below was taken during Geeks on a Beach 2 in Mactan, Cebu.
His provocative ideas then should tease you to listen with what he has to say NOW.)
“The Philippines is a country full of smart and creative people — it’s a perfect place for entrepreneurship to flourish and grow,” said McClure in a separate occasion. He added that 500 Startups is interested in a number of startups in the country, though nothing has been finalized yet.
500 Startups has invested in over 500 startups or innovation-driven enterprises related to web search, social media, and mobile app platforms. It now has local partners in Malaysia (500 Durians fund), South Korea (500 Kimchi), and Thailand (500 Tuktuks). It is gearing for even stronger penetration in the Southeast Asian region.
PH is next
GOAB co-presenter IdeaSpace, the country’s largest privately backed incubator and accelerator, said that the Philippines should logically be the next budding tech startup destination but also added that much work still needs to be done to build the local startup ecosystem.
Work since the first GOAB, nonetheless, has lead to the shaping up of the Philippine startup road map that will be officially launched on the first day of GOAB 3. Philippine Senator Paolo Benigno “Bam” Aguirre Aquino IV and top officials of the country’s Department of Science and Technology (DOST) are attending GOAB 3 to be with private sector startup players during the launch.
“We are committed to our vision of nurturing technology startups from the Philippines and the Southeast Asia to help them scale to the region and globally,” said IdeaSpace President and Co-Founder Earl Martin Valencia.
“With all the sectors interested to support startups – private sector, academia, government and non profit – the country could be one of the worlds best environments for budding entrepreneurs,” said Valencia. He also added that initiatives like GOAB help grow existing startups and inspire entrepreneurs to launch their businesses
IdeaSpace has co-invested with 500 Startups in startups like real-estate portal Zipmatch.com. ZipMatch.com co-founders John Dang and Chow Paredes met some of their investors in the first GOAB conference in Boracay in 2013.
Here’s a video about Boracay posted by a tourist from Europe.
GOAB lead organizer and TechTalks.ph founder Tina Amper, meanwhile, stressed the role of GOAB in helping making this a reality by bringing together startups, entrepreneurs, and designers to take part in a laidback yet dynamic and prolific interaction on tech, entrepreneurship and business opportunities.
“Participants get full attention of just about everyone in GOAB as it’s a destination conference. People have to be in Boracay for 2-3 days so you have multiple opportunities to meet people, network, deepen the relationship before you go back to real life. No need to travel abroad to meet international tech startup leaders as they are coming to Boracay,” she said
GOAB is unique as an international conference due its fun by the beach yet productive atmosphere that offers participants opportunities to not only learn the latest on tech and entrepreneurship but also to network and secure business deals.
“GOAB is Southeast Asia’s most relaxed, friendly, and fun conference. Real relationships get made. Deals get done. And it’s by the beach. You can’t miss this,” said Khailee Ng, also of 500 Startups as its Managing Partner.
“The GOAB experience since year 1 saw a growing community of non-Filipinos who decided to make the Philippines their base for building their startup projects. They cite the friendly atmosphere that mixes work and play, something that is conducive to creative work,” said PRworks Inc. founder and president Doris Mongaya.
“Being the most Westernized in southeast Asia, it is culturally a natural gateway to the vast integrated ASEAN economy of some 650 million people,” Mongaya noted. The Cebu-based PRworks handles public relations and events in the Visayas and Mindanao for AirAsia Philippines, Globe Telecom, GT Cosmetics, MiCab, Easy Taxi, OLX Philippines, 2GO Travel, Premier Business Family Consultancy, Center for Healthcare Professions (CHP) Cebu, and SPC Power Corp.
“The country has a young, tech-savvy, well-educated, English-speaking population. This attracted the BPOs for over a decade now. More Filipinos are now venturing on their own as tech entrepreneurs and helping develop the local startup ecosystem,” she said.
The launch of the startup road map set as the main highlight of GOAB 3 propels this “Philippines as ASEAN gateway” positioning, she pointed out.
Call for participants
GOAB organizers are encouraging those interested but have not yet registered to signup now to make the most of this rare experience. They particularly called on people in the tech industry who want to see what’s new in live action to join GOAB.
“Even if you are not ready to make any career moves now, GOAB is the time to get yourself educated, start making contacts and friends who can help you in the future. You won’t be disappointed,” said Amper.
Existing businesses that are eager to use tech, online and social media tools to increase sales and profit are also encouraged to come to GOAB and learn about best practices and meet professionals who can help them deploy these tools.
She noted that even those working outside tech but are curious about what the fuss is about should come and feel the energy and hear how young entrepreneurs from the Philippines and Southeast Asia are building companies that help make the world a better place.
TechTalks.ph sponsors and partners
TechTalks.ph has once again partnered with IdeaSpace, SMART Communications, SMART DevNet, PLDT Innolab, and the Department of Science and Technology-Information and Communication Technology Office (DOST-ICTO) to make the third GOAB possible.
Strategic partners include Sym.ph, Happy Garaje, and PRWorks with AirAsia, Amazon, 1337 Ventures, Monk’s Hill Ventures, Plug and Play. Microsoft, Islands Souvenirs, Salarium, Frontier Ventures, RTI International and USAID-STRIDE as main sponsors.
TechTalks.ph is a non-profit organization that supports tech startups and promotes ICT careers in the Philippines. TechTalks.ph has organized 11 Startup Weekend workshops in the Philippines, and two Geeks on Beach tech confabs.
For Media Inquiries, please contact Doris Isubal-Mongaya, PRworks Inc. President & CEO, at +63 917 791 9545, +63 32 4167159 or +63 32 2541781, [email protected]. Skype: Doris Isubal-Mongaya; Twitter: @doris_mongaya.
How do you do marketing for startups?