Tim, our project advisor working for the UN told me this story yesterday as we were discussing E-learner Platform 2.0:
An American friend of his has stayed in Thailand for 15 years and is running a small multimedia studio, employing 20 people and their main product is e-learning.. Very small, they make $1mil a year. His company creates Flash training materials for Pizza Hut in Thai to teach people how to make the pizza. The pay is big. But he doesn’t want to expand overseas, which potentially will put his company at a position worth of $100mil.
Tim’s point was E-learning would be the future. No objection. But here’s my point.
If our man in the story expanded his company, more problems would get solved, more people would benefit by and from his media solutions, on a global scale. It is the impact that matters when scalability is realized.
Brian Pelz, Vinagame CEO, when asked during his presentation at Barcampsaigon, about his company’s intention of going overseas, said no. If his company went global, a lot more people would get to play made-in-Vietnam games, whose titles have already been in their list, so far I’ve heard. You may argue about the flaws of online gaming but to me, it’s a lousy practice to blame on things whose problems hail from us. It’s not the game that’s the problem. It’s because we’re trapped in our hunger for entertainment and play our life away. It’s our fault. To err is human, to forgive divine.
The same principle applies to E-learner Platform 2.0. I want to at least bring it to a South East Asia level. And we have a team that can bring it to that level. But we want to firstly be a big fish in a small pond: Vietnam. Start small, but think big.
I wonder if any start-up has ever had the slightest idea about being a global company instead of focusing on this $84mil person market.