L-R: Eddie Hu, Executive Director & Head, Commercial Clients, Standard Chartered Malaysia; Mahendra Gursahani, Managing Director & Chief Executive Officer, Standard Chartered Malaysia; Datuk Ismail Ibrahim, Chief Executive Officer, Iskandar Regional Development Authority (IRDA); Andrew Bainbridge, Global Head , Commercial Clients, Standard Chartered; Vishal Shah, Managing Director & Regional Head, ASEAN, Commercial Clients, Standard Chartered
Over 60 Percent Of Malaysian Mid-Sized Companies Eye Markets Abroad
Standard Chartered reaffirms its commitment to SMEs in Malaysia
JOHOR BAHRU, 9 June 2015 – More than 60 per cent of Malaysian mid-sized companies are keen to expand beyond the country’s borders, according to an independent survey conducted by Standard Chartered Bank.
The survey also indicated that ASEAN is the most popular international destination for Malaysian companies, with 76 percent of the surveyed firms already doing business in this region.
Speaking at a summit themed: “Elevating Cross Border Opportunities in ASEAN & Beyond”, Mahendra Gursahani, Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director, Standard Chartered Bank Malaysia believes that the Bank has a big role to play to advise and facilitate cross-border ambitions of these companies.
“There are many opportunities in markets beyond domestic borders. However, there are also challenges that will be faced by many local mid-sized firms that seek to internationalise. These challenges include unfamiliar regulatory environments and sourcing credit facilities for working capital needs,” Mahendra said.
He opined that this is where banks such as Standard Chartered can bring together businesses and investors from across ASEAN. “What makes us distinctive is the breadth and depth of our network. Standard Chartered has presence in 10 ASEAN countries to help facilitate trade between the region and the rest of the world”, he adds.
The Standard Chartered survey further revealed that close to 80 per cent of Malaysian mid-sized companies are confident in the growth potential of their businesses in the next five years. Among the factors that are fuelling such expansionary confidence are from the increasing demand for products and services. Much of this is driven by a growing middle class, as well as the relatively young population that is entering the workforce.
Andrew Bainbridge, Global Head of Commercial Clients at Standard Chartered commented that such confidence is a positive sign of growth for the SME segment.
“Mid-sized companies are crucial engines of economic growth and job creation across ASEAN, and are increasingly active in global trade. Our study shows that slowing growth in the region has not dented the confidence of the company CEOs. In fact, these dynamic companies are looking to take on more workers and expand into new markets, growing their turnover in the next five years.”
As Malaysia’s first bank with 140 years in the country, Standard Chartered has an unrivalled knowledge of the local market and understands the important role of SMEs in growing the Malaysian economy and their unmet banking needs.
The robust SME sector in Malaysia constitutes 97 per cent of the total business establishments in the country. The SME sector is also the largest provider of employment where it provides about 60 per cent of job opportunities, contributes to 32 per cent to Malaysia’s GDP and 19 per cent of exports.
Eddie Hu, Executive Director and Head of Commercial Clients, Standard Chartered Bank Malaysia said, “With our needs-based approach and strong capabilities, we are well positioned to help our customers capture business opportunities and expand across markets. This is timely in view of the government’s rising interest in spurring the development of a more diverse, competitive and high-growth SME sector.”