Financing still a challenge for startups
If Asian universities collaborate among each other, it would open up opportunities for innovation and connect startups and entrepreneurs with global investment markets, said Baybars Altuntas, chairperson of World Business Angel Investment Forum.
Forty percent of Bangladesh’s population are young, who can contribute to the world economy through entrepreneurship, he said.
The Turkish entrepreneur visited Dhaka on November 21-24. He delivered the keynote speech at 18th Asian University Presidents Forum (AUPF) 2019, organised by Daffodil International University (DIU), in collaboration with Association of Private Universities of Bangladesh (APUB).
He presented his keynote on the theme for this year’s AUPF, “Future of Entrepreneurship Education and Experiential Learning: Determinants of Developing Successful Entrepreneurial Eco-System in Asian Economies.”
Altuntas, also the developer of the world-renowned entrepreneurship theory called “Altuntas Startup Compass Theory”, said that entrepreneurship is essential for boosting the economy. “Yet the challenge to finance their startups remains. They need more financing to compete in global markets,” he said.
“Angel investors not only invest more money, they also bring in industry expertise, mentorship and networks to the businesses they invest in,” sayd Altuntas.
Qualified angel investors are important because they can connect local startups, investors and entrepreneurs with global markets like Silicon Valley.
Angel investors are wealthy individuals or groups of individuals who invest money or equity to finance startup or early-stage small businesses.
Shedding light on the state of entrepreneurship in Bangladesh and Asia, he said many Western observers have spoken about Asia’s massive business potential. “Asia is developing and emerging. Most creative ideas and businesses are coming from this continent.”
“Developing global collaboration is very important to drive innovation in local economies,” he said.
He added, for a country like Bangladesh, entrepreneurial education is very important.
Entrepreneurial education will help students create networks and they will be encouraged to set up a business before graduating, he said.
In today’s world, he said that many entrepreneurs are coming from universities. “As far as I know, Daffodil International University is the only university in Bangladesh with an entrepreneurship department,” Altuntas said.
He added that investors should be educated as well, to understand how to deal with entrepreneurs and financing techniques.