THIS WEEK'S TOPIC: What are you as a business leader looking forward to, for company or country, in the Year of the Dog?
Founder & Chair
Terrific Mentors International Pte Ltd
FOR country, I hope the Year of the Dog will produce new visions of how Singapore can remain its outstanding self in a world where others' resources are greater and the pace of change is accelerating.
I hope the dog's ‘Woof' will produce a new ‘Wow'. Can the Dog hunt down something spectacular for Singapore?
For company, I hope we can help even more people weather the storm of disruption that is besetting everyone's life.
I hope we will enable them to read others better and find a viable purpose in life. When we focus on helping others, we help ourselves the most.
Yeoh Oon Jin
DOGS are loyal, reliable, faithful and sincere. Today, these characteristics are commonly regarded as “old-school” values. Often changing allegiance, instant gratification, “short-termism”, as well as fake news - these alternative values are gaining popularity and shaping individual behaviours, company actions and social norms today. In the Year of the Dog, let's return to some of our “old-school” values. In PwC, we act with integrity and believe in building trust in society. In this new world of digital disruption and globalisation, here's a new trick from humankind's best friend: “old-school” values not only co-exist in our rapidly changing world, but they are also firm foundations that will help us build a stronger trust-based society.
Singapore National Co-operative Federation (SNCF)
TODAY'S fast-moving world is characterised by technological disruptions, mismatched skills and globalised competition. As we move into the Year of the Dog, I hope to see businesses adopt innovative ways of thinking to not only do well but also to do good.
The future of Singapore is going to be led by the next generation. Let's support and grow a network of youth entrepreneurs, with sustainable businesses focused on social good. My hope is for more youths to embrace the social mission and co-operative values of self-help and mutual help in their efforts to effect positive change for a better Singapore.
Asean and Singapore Managing Partner
IN today's highly disruptive world where inequality and disparity in socio-economic progress prevail, I look forward to inclusive and sustainable growth, such that governments and businesses invest for the future, employment rises and everyone has opportunities to succeed and be the best that they can be.
I hope to see greater trust building up globally among governments, businesses and citizenry, which is fundamental to driving collective progress. Whether as businesses or individuals, the real imperative is to pursue innovation and really seize the upsides of disruption, in particular that of digital, and transform ourselves to be future-ready. Let's embrace this opportunity to take the machine out of human, and make human more human.
Hong Bao Media
MY wish for the Year of the Dog is that we all learn to communicate better with each other, and it doesn't matter whether that's in English, Chinese, Malay or Tamil.
We need to be better communicators at home, at school, at work; when we pitch our ideas; when we apply for a job; when we resolve conflict; when we want to win other people for our point of view.
As a country the only resources we have are people, so we, the people, need to be the best we can be. This is not just a personal, social or economic imperative. It is an existential one. We need to roar like lions, not bark like dogs.
Global Sales Strategy Director
DOGS, according to Chinese astrology, are loyal, honest and responsible. I would know - it's my year after all. I'm greatly looking forward to these positive attributes playing a more prominent role in the ad-tech industry overall.
As digital takes something of a kicking lately, with a few of the key FMCG giants taking a hard stance on their digital advertising strategy, it's important to remember that trust underwrites every business relationship worth having. In 2018, ad-tech needs to behave in a more dog-like fashion and become its clients' best friend.
HONESTY. Loyalty. Reliability. Patience. The traits I'd like to see more of in business as we celebrate the Year of the Dog.
My hope is for companies to make a genuine effort to connect with humans both inside and outside the corporate sector. To reward loyalty because being loyal in a crazy world of options is rare. To be authentic and share when we make mistakes because that is human.
To be reliable and do what you say you will do. To consistently make an effort even when it's tough. And most importantly, be more patient as we all are learning to live in a faster, changing world.
CEO and Founder
YEAR 2018 marks a paradigm shift in Singapore's retail sector, which will likely see the amount of time Singaporeans spend online matching offline retail sales for the first time.
Given their fear of losing out to e-commerce, brands will consider innovative ways to drive footfall to their physical stores. Offline retailers need to beef up their real-time hyper-local presence. Nobody wants a deal from months ago, or a month later, or a kilometre away. Consumers will want something near them, right now.
We are excited to help shape consumer shopping through location-based marketing and spur new growth in the retail sector.
AS we stand on the threshold of a technological shift poised to transform the way we live and work, I expect the Year of the Dog to spur decision makers across industries to embody and put into practice the positive traits associated with the animal - intelligence, agility, persistence, and the ability to sniff out opportunities and risks.
In embracing the digital era and dramatically improving the way they serve our needs and enhance our lives, businesses will create inventive performance benchmarks and deliver differentiated and intimate customer experiences. Rapid innovation, the perseverance to stay ahead of constantly evolving technologies and expectations, and the vision to spot the next breakthrough are where canine attributes will help define success.
Keppel DC REIT Management Pte Ltd
THE cost of doing business and access to markets are critical issues for companies. I therefore look forward to no increased corporate tax burdens in the Budget; better still if these are reduced.
Getting appropriate professional manpower also adds to costs. This can be tempered if the government does not unduly restrict foreign talent where there is a shortage locally. Additionally, I hope protectionist sentiments do not rise so that markets, particularly in the region, remain open and accessible. In the wider context, of paramount importance is the issue of leadership after PM Lee Hsien Loong. I hope the leadership succession is clearly spelt out soon, for Singaporeans and outsiders to see. For a small city state, nothing is more important than having a visionary leader with grit, gumption and gravitas to succeed.
Chris J Reed
Global CEO and Founder
The Dark Art of Marketing and Black Marketing
AS a Dog myself, I am especially looking forward to “my year” bringing an abundance of success and happiness for my team (many of whom are also dogs) and my clients in Singapore and beyond. I especially think that the Year of the Dog will be the year of personal branding.
We all have a personal brand and, just like every dog, each of us has a different personal brand identity. People ‘buy' people just like they choose specific dogs to befriend. As the gig economy transforms the workplace further, your personal brand will dictate your future success, especially if you are, like me, an entrepreneur. You need to invest in yours now to ensure that you capitalise on all the opportunities created in this special year.
Dogs are also full of enthusiasm, trust, positivity and they love to meet new people. These are great traits for you also to take into the year of the dog 2018.
Vice President, Asia-Pacific
IN 2017, Singapore's offline retail industry earned a record S$3.8 billion and we are optimistic for this growth to continue as we welcome the Year of the Dog.
To capture more dollars, it's essential that brands truly capture customers' hearts and minds. In 2018, with technology like AI on their side, brands will step up their game and raise the bar of customer experience in the uber-omnichannel world to another level.
At Capillary, we are excited and geared to support this advance. As customer delight increases, so will the propensity to spend, ultimately boosting the industry's market outlook. And it's just about right since shopping is among our national pastimes!
Founder and CEO
AS the founder of a company that believes in digital transformation and its benefits to companies of all sizes, I am looking forward to seeing more companies embracing rather than fearing the change that the digital train brings. I also wish everyone a more successful and meaningful year. A better economy, not just in Singapore, but worldwide!
Founder & CEO
ACI HR Solutions
I THINK there's one certainty in business and that's uncertainty, never more apparent than in recent years, fuelled by geopolitical events which affected market confidence globally.
Now that the dust has settled on some of the more seismic events, as a business leader of a regional recruitment company, I'm optimistic that a simple but historic handshake over a sporting event will hopefully transcend into a period of stability in the Year of the Dog - or at the very least hope that you can indeed teach old dogs new tricks.
Founder and MD
IN the Year of the Dog, we will be looking to the traits of “man's best friend” - enthusiasm, loyalty and adventure.
As we celebrate another Lunar New Year in our adopted Asian home, we look forward to fostering relationships with existing clients and building new ones, adventuring into fresh opportunities and continuing to be inspired, and inspire others, through creativity and hard work.
Senior Director, Asia-Pacific
THE Year of the Dog stands for solidarity and brotherhood, and in that spirit, we are looking forward to contributing to Singapore's tech talent ecosystem.
In the past year, we've seen many companies genuinely working towards nurturing the next generation of tech talent and helping the workforce upskill. This long-term view will go a long way in minimising the tech skills gap. While we have extensive talent acquisition experience around the world, Indeed's recently founded engineering office makes us a relative newcomer to Singapore, and we're thankful for advice and insights that our clients and partners have shared about hiring the best local tech talent.
Executive Vice President, Asia-Pacific
The Warranty Group
SINGAPORE is a growing hotbed for insurtech, so I'm looking forward to further disruption within the traditional insurance industry. These startups incorporate technology to foster stronger, high-touch relationships providing greater and more transparent services to customers - many of the incumbents could learn a thing or two from them.
As all industries undergo digital transformation and consumers gain unfettered access to information online, we can see mindsets and expectations shifting among discerning shoppers. Now everything - from point-of-sale, to delivery, extended service contracts and aftersales - needs to offer customisation and convenience. Insurance has been slow to the mark, but the cogs are now turning - consumers won't and shouldn't have to accept anything less.
WE'RE optimistic about the year ahead due to Philips' diversified business model. Health technology will continue to be a buoyant market for us in Singapore, especially as our Smart Nation vision and the upcoming electronic medical records legislation will create a more integrated healthcare system that encourages patients to take proactive steps in managing their own health.
While we're hopeful about the bullish economic growth forecasts this year, we're also working hard to create a resilient pipeline to see us through.
Chief Executive Officer
Swiss Re Asia Pte Ltd
I REMAIN very optimistic about the region's prospects for future growth as we enter the Year of the Dog. I expect the strong momentum of the past few years to carry through.
But growth brings with it ever more complexity and risk for businesses, governments and societies. As the world becomes more interconnected, the nature of risk is evolving: geopolitical uncertainty, growing environmental concerns, ageing populations and new health challenges have become significant issues that need to be addressed in this region.
While all these concerns are pressing, I am also hopeful and excited that Swiss Re can help to play a key role in pre-financing some of these risks. Properly mitigated, these risks will also become the opportunities that fuel growth in Asia.
Chief Executive Officer
LAST year we saw great strides in Singapore's journey towards becoming a cashless society. I look forward to the Year of the Dog being the year paperless banking is brought to the forefront of the financial services agenda.
Despite the push for digital transformation in the last few years, physical documents and wet signatures are often still a requirement in the application of financial products. To address this, BankBazaar has built a technology platform to enable an end-to-end paperless journey. With the support of regulatory authorities and integration with our bank partners, we hope to bring this to consumers across Singapore and make paper-based financial transactions a thing of the past. Let the Year of Dog be the Year of Paperless Journey!
Oceanus Group Limited
THE year of the Rooster was a watershed year for us as we successfully completed our debt restructuring exercise and are now debt-free. As part of our vision to move up the value chain and become a global premium seafood supply chain manager, we've struck strategic partnerships with leading institutions like Temasek Polytechnic and James Cook University to collaborate on aquaculture training and R&D.
Working with thought leaders, we hope to be at the forefront of cutting-edge aquaculture technology and to put Singapore on the world map for innovative aquaculture technology and food security in the near future.
Regional President, Asia
IN 2018, my focus is aligned with the Year of the Dog. A new start; action, effort and caution exercised in harmony, with loyalty measured against honesty for what needs to be done.
The New Year is a bright shining opportunity, bringing in new ideas and energy, which we are excited to share with clients through the application of Creative Intelligence. Ultimately, fun is the outcome of hard work, so we are well poised to reap the rewards.
Chief Executive Officer
RHT Holdings Pte Ltd
MY wish for the company and the country in the Year of the Dog is for us to be shaped by canine traits, particularly to stay faithful to the strategies that drive our businesses and people forward. I feel blessed to be working with colleagues who continuously look forward.
And as the Committee for Future Economy envisioned, we will continue to make intelligent use of technology in order to drive positive change and make a difference in the markets we serve.
In the Year of the Dog, my wish is for us to keep up the enthusiasm and passion that have served us well. We expect this to be an exciting year, full of energy and drive as we channel our efforts into new technologies and service opportunities.
All of us at RHT Group of Companies continue to look forward to making Singapore our launch pad to testbed new ideas and propagate collaborative partnerships with like-minded firms across the region.
Tan May Lin
General Manager (Sales, Marketing, and Customer Service Division)
YEAR 2017 was a very interesting year to say the least. Today the call for Singaporeans to be more connected, more productive, more innovative and more “SMART”, has never been more pressing or urgent.
Epson Singapore too is not spared from the need to innovate to a rapidly changing and dynamic landscape. As we usher in the Year of the Dog, we have to scale up and sell products and solutions that are of higher value to our customers. Being the little red dot that we are, we realise that since we cannot win on volume, we will have to win on value.
Chief Technologist, SUSE Asia-Pacific
We look forward to an era of transformation and collaboration. In the coming year, open source professionals need to prepare their infrastructure - where and how they run their applications and store their data, how they build their apps and what they do with their data.
They will also need to work closely with other companies, including competitors, to develop the solutions that support an infrastructure to handle advanced technologies. With the broadening diversity of pieces interacting together, taking an open approach to collaboration will be even more key than it was in the past.
Vice-President, Data Centre Solutions, APJ
TECHNOLOGY has undoubtedly altered the course of business and transformed growth trajectories of Asian economies. Singapore's Smart Nation journey is a prime example of how deeper relationships with technology have produced initiatives like the Singapore Quick Response Code for e-payments, the MyInfo platform for e-government services and the debut of Singapore's first driverless truck that navigates by satellite - replacing transponders completely.
As we enter the next era of human-machine partnerships driven by technologies that fuel analytics-driven port operations to genomic-driven personalised medicine, our reliance on machines will be characterised by even greater efficiency and innovations than ever before. This will require businesses to transform their IT, workforce and security to take the lead in the decades to come.
Limited Partner, and CEO
Lombard Odier Asia
CHINESE new year is traditionally a time for one to clear out the clutter and usher in a prosperous future with loved ones. Markets saw a turbulent start to the year and as we enter the Year of the Dog, it is important investors who are looking to preserve, protect and grow their assets for themselves and future generations are not distracted by short-term volatility, but are focused on a safe and steady long-term risk-based investment approach.
We at Lombard Odier advocate handling one's wealth on a discretionary portfolio management basis so that the art of investing, especially through turbulent times, is left to the professional and that approaches are long-term.
We believe that managing wealth in a holistic way, preferably based on a risk-based approach, should be at the forefront of all investors' minds, and we wish them all a prosperous investment horizon. Gong Xi Fa Cai!
Founder & MD
Rebel & Soul
WITH attention grabbing headlines of high octane politics, sharp fluctuations in the global financial markets and the latest celebrity mishap, we can often fail to give our attention to the headlines that really count.
Climate change is real and record breaking temperatures, rising sea levels and over consumption are just some of the factors displacing hundreds of thousands of families every year.
Singapore is a Smart Nation. In this Year of the Earth Dog, I would like to see us get Smart about the Earth. Let's focus our Smart resources on recycling ocean waste, creating green power, growing meat in labs and producing Supercapacitors so that electric cars can match the distances of petrol.
In Bill Gate's recent words, in order to fix climate change “we need an energy miracle”. I look forward to seeing miracles happen.
Singapore Office Country Head
Simmons & Simmons
THERE has been a fairly consistent improvement in global economic activity in the past year and our business internationally has seen corresponding growth during the period. In Singapore, we are pleased to have continued our growth trajectory, particularly in areas that are aligned with Singapore's strengths as a major global centre for asset management, financial institutions and commodities.
These sectors performed well last year and with synchronised global growth and improvement in commodities prices likely continuing, I am cautiously optimistic that the good numbers will continue into 2018 despite recent hiccups.
More broadly, I think it will be interesting to observe the ongoing fintech tussle between Singapore and Hong Kong to see which city comes out on top regionally and, perhaps more importantly, the practical impact on business in Singapore of the inevitable adoption of disruptive technologies.
YEAR 2017 was an incredible for Cloudera Asia-Pacific, with many milestones achieved - we launched our Indonesia entity, expanded our Apac headquarters in Singapore and formed many strategic partnerships. In 2018, we look forward to helping even more organisations derive insights from their data, using machine learning and analytics, all optimised for the cloud.
Every sector - from finance to telecommunications, government and healthcare - can do something meaningful with their data and we want to be part of that journey. Another key priority is to continue strengthening our partner ecosystem as we truly believe that collaboration is integral to the success of the entire industry. As we usher in the Year of the Dog, I wish everyone a good year ahead.
Vice-President and GM, Asia
SINGAPORE has proven to be a hotbed of innovation when it comes to payments. The government has led the way, with e-payments being a focus area under the Smart Nation programme, along with initiatives such as the setup of the new Payments Council, PayNow, and SG QR. We've seen plenty of creative ideas and solutions from fintech startups, while banks are implementing features that will truly improve customer experiences.
All in all, we look forward to payments becoming easier and faster this year, as Singapore moves towards a cashless economy and being a leader in digital payments.
Wong Heng Chew
A NEW year brings new opportunities, and amongst the interest in digital currencies, my bets are on an increasingly valuable commodity among companies - data.
Continued investments in IoT and analytics will make perfect business sense as we grapple with more data available than what we can currently analyse and understand. Companies that invest in business intelligence will find substantial benefits, from improved customer metrics, accelerated time to market, to strengthening their product and service mixes, brand valuation and recognition, and ultimately improving their bottomline. As we strive towards digital success, we need to go beyond technology alone, to get our people, partnerships and processes in line.
I look forward to a new wave of AI-based disruption on the manpower front, and am optimistic that there will be a positive net effect for the workforce despite the challenges in automating traditional jobs.
Regional Sales Director - South-east Asia & ANZ
IN the new year, we hope for Singapore to become a healthier nation. As investments in technology-aided patient care will see increasing momentum, we hope that the adoption of video conferencing for outpatient consultations will play a meaningful role.
As a premier content delivery network service provider, we hope that these technologies can facilitate a more consistent and reliable healthcare experience for patients. Specifically, by increasing interactivity through low-latency connectivity, enabling faster decision-making and accessibility, and ultimately providing a more satisfying patient experience for every Singaporean.
Project Director, Food and Hospitality
THE traits of a dog - loyalty and full of energy - epitomise Food&HotelAsia (FHA)'s exciting year of milestones ahead. Year 2018 is of celebration for FHA as we mark 40 years of business excellence with loyal friendships forged with our close-knit business partners as their preferred tradeshow.
I believe the Year of the Dog will also see the food and hospitality industry in Asia reach new heights, spurred by the evolution in market demands that will drive a voracious appetite for change.
Kickstarting with the world stage that inspires food and hospitality innovation, we look forward to seeing exhibitors showcase a wider variety of breakthrough flavours and equipment, as well as even stronger collaborations forged at FHA2018 in April.
Senior Director and General Manager, South-east Asia and Taiwan
Aruba, a Hewlett Packard Enterprise company
DIGITAL workplace environments are becoming more complex due to digitalisation, explosion of data and IoT.
This is an era of mobile workers who are used to being connected 24/7 on multiple mobile devices. This brings new cybersecurity vulnerabilities to enterprise networks.
This year, protecting and strengthening networks is going to be critical. Singapore recently passed into law the Cybersecurity Bill that requires critical information infrastructure owners to ensure security of their computer networks.
We look forward to working with partners across the public and private sectors to empower organisations by delivering speed, security, impact and timeliness to their networks. Most importantly, we want to put in place networks that offer 360-degree protection from the edge to the core to the cloud.
General Manager of South-east Asia, Hong Kong and Macau
IN 2017, digital disruption drove a technology-first mindset among the public and private sectors, one that Singapore has embraced through its Smart Nation initiatives and development of an Asean Smart Cities Network through our role as Asean Chair.
Looking ahead, artificial intelligence (AI) is set to be at the forefront of Singapore's technological advancements, and YITU is committed to help further the innovation agenda. In order to deploy intelligent solutions for the digital age, we intend to launch an R&D Centre in Singapore that focuses on AI research and helping to build a strong local talent pool for Singapore.
Chief Executive Officer
QBE Insurance (Singapore) Pte Ltd
OUR recent survey into SMEs here found that 50 per cent of them are optimistic towards the economy in 2018, indicating enthusiasm within the economy for what is to come.
While the ups and downs experienced in the Year of the Rooster can be expected to continue into the Year of the Dog, firms can still look forward to new ways of working and operating as they respond to challenges brought on by the shifting economy. We look forward to partnering with companies here in tackling these challenges head-on, and to mitigate and minimise business risk that continues to dog their day-to-day operations and overall profitability and prosperity.
Chief Executive Officer
Thales in Singapore
THALES is looking forward to playing a key role in helping digitise the Singapore ecosystem. With support from the government, we are looking to help more Singapore businesses take the next leap into digital. Globally, Thales' recent investments in cybersecurity, analytics and artificial intelligence position us well in helping Singapore companies achieve their goals.
This is clearly not a journey we embark on alone. We've recently announced collaborations with local partners like CAAS and NTU for research in areas like the next generation of air traffic management, to nanotechnologies in electronics and photonic materials.
We look forward to developing deeper partnerships with key local institutions, so we can contribute productively to Singapore's Industry Transformation Maps.
Regional Head, Asia-Pacific
The Adecco Group
RAPID technological disruption and diverse forms of employment, ranging from permanent contracts to freelancing and everything else in between, characterise today's world of work.
Catering to diversity entails the right rules and policies such as promoting inclusive labour markets, creating more opportunities for the elderly and female in work, and streamlining immigration rules with business needs. Technological changes necessitate better education and training, encouraging entrepreneurship and enabling innovation by investing in future-focused and country-specific skills development.
Embracing the diversity and harnessing the technological change will help to foster job creation, create a more diverse and inclusive workforce and ultimately build a more prosperous and sustainable society in Singapore - which is what I wish for, and am looking forward to, in the Year of the Dog.
Chief Executive Officer
Dimension Data Asia-Pacific
THE year ahead is an exciting one. Technology is growing at an incredibly fast pace. What used to be interesting conversation topics such as IoT, AI, robotics, is now mainstream and delivering valuable disruptive outcomes.
At Dimension Data, we have always believed in the ability of technology to accelerate ambitions of businesses. We equip organisations with the digital infrastructure for success. We provide the tools and technology to help increase productivity of employees and improve engagement with the end-customer. We hope that companies in Singapore will change their outlook towards the ‘digital' agenda and find ways to effectively use these new technologies to ensure agility and build competitive advantage
Lee Fook Chiew
Chief Executive Officer
Institute of Singapore Chartered Accountants.
MY wish is for a good year of peace, stability and prosperity for everyone. The Chinese believe a peaceful house breeds good fortune and prosperity.
In line with this thinking, I wish for peace and stability in Asean and the wider region. Good relations between Singapore and Asean and the world will be important in facilitating open trade. With Singapore being the Chair of Asean this year, I hope there will be more opportunities for Singapore businesses, including our local accounting firms, to take advantage of free trade agreements and expand in the region.
Song Tang Yih
Vice-President, Apac Sales
IN 2017, we witnessed technological advancements and cyber threats that had a significant impact in the realm of IT. In the coming year, we are excited by the prospect of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and machine learning taking centre stage to power cyber defences.
Already, AI is being embedded tightly in IT analytics systems, making IT proactive versus reactive. Imagine the possibilities when AI is used for predictive analytics to give security researchers and security operations the ability to predict an attack that is yet to happen.
For the new year, we look forward to witnessing AI's power achieve great things and becoming more relevant for industries.
QUOTING IDC, data analysis will be the driving force behind nearly all human activity in the next decade, and we are seeing first-hand how data has stirred excitement amongst our customers in the Asia-Pacific.
Personally, I feel this will be the momentum year for data analytics. Companies that have invested in analytics are now reaping benefits and wanting to expand its use across the organisation.
However, in this era of information clutter, we should not let the data tail wag the dog. The ability for employees of all levels to read, understand and argue with data becomes crucial, which is why I look forward to seeing data literacy going mainstream this year.
Dentsu Aegis Network Singapore
AS the Year of the Dog barks in, the tectonic plates of the digital economy continue to shift relentlessly.
Drawing closer towards the co-existence of humans and artificial intelligence, the cultivation of a community that embraces digital sits as one of our business priorities. On a national level, we must demonstrate the benefits of the digital economy to the wider society and ensure no one gets left behind. As a business, we have to be enablers and support others in the navigation of this complex environment. This is vital, because ultimately, the digital economy is one that is people-led.
FOR Henkel Singapore, we want to strengthen our market positions in adhesive technologies and beauty care, and advance our Global Supply Chain Hub programmes.
We also look forward to seeing our digitalisation and Industry 4.0 efforts deliver innovative solutions and greater value to customers. With our inclusive culture, I hope to see a stronger entrepreneurial drive among our employees, and they become more responsive to changes and willing to take risks.
Alongside Singapore's sustainability plan, Henkel has adopted 2018 as the Year of Climate Action. It will be an exciting year as all stakeholders work together to enable a sustainable future for all.
Schweizer World Pte Ltd
WE are welcoming the year of the disruptive dog. In 2018, technology will change the way the world works in more ways than expected. That creates opportunity if you can keep up and get ahead of the curve.
Government initiatives towards a concept of an open innovation ecosystem are even more important today than ever before. Why?
Markets are evolving at an accelerated speed. Technologies that underpin most of the disruptive forces in the world today can cross over borders and move easily around the world in a heartbeat. No singular person or company can keep up with the dynamic nature of the change around us.
More than ever, disruptive challenger companies, ideas and people can come from anywhere on the globe.
While we are individually and collectively very competitive, I believe that winning today means choosing to ask “How can we win together?”
This is why an open innovation ecosystem built around nurturing a community of alliances, big businesses, startups, academics, students and governments, along with entrepreneurs, who continuously challenge our view of the world, and who detect and remove blind spots invisible to us, is of utmost importance. Business leaders need to also think about bringing together a diverse set of thinking to learn from and re-evaluate how they look at the world and its challenges.
It's this richness in the combination of knowledge, learnings, skills and experience of a “league” that can create excellent outcomes and build a better working world in Singapore.
CEO and Chairman
IN 2017 digital ad spend outgrew TV ad spend for the first time ever. A large portion of this can be attributed to mobile ad spend. For marketers, leveraging mobile data and the use of data science technologies to understand and track consumers has become increasingly important for more effective targeting and attribution.
We look forward to supporting brands and agencies in harnessing the power of mobile data to make smarter and more effective marketing decisions.
Senior Vice-President (Asia-Pacific)
AS we move forward into Industry 4.0, new technologies such as additive manufacturing (AM) will continue to change the manufacturing industry.
Singapore is poised to leverage on growth in advanced manufacturing, and EOS recently expanded our presence in the region with the aim of helping more businesses transform and being with them at every stage of their journey - from formulating AM strategies and production to setting up in-house AM capabilities.
We believe 2018 will be another remarkable year for Singapore's manufacturing sector, and we look forward to seeing the launch of more smart factories to drive efficiencies and economic growth for the nation.
Managing Director, South Asia
AS Singapore inches towards becoming a Smart Nation, the government needs to pay attention to better platforms or technologies to integrate services for the country. Third party organisations, industry and business leaders, and the private sector have to come together to form collaborative communities to operate more efficiently.
With that, we expect to see high interconnection proliferation in the new year as businesses transform at the digital edge. At Equinix, we look forward to continuously playing a pivotal role in the developments that will help shape businesses in the coming year, and strengthen our commitment to being “man's best friend” in business.
Co-founder and Managing Director
Beautiful.me & Synagie.com
AS a business leader I always welcome each lunar new year with a lot of positivity because it just means I and my staff have new goals and objectives to achieve.
Every year is different for the company as we have new or different business partners, and more customers to worry about maintaining standards of service and, in our case, making sure goods bought are in top quality and arrive in a few days without delay.
To me I find little to worry about in terms of the Singapore government. They've always been supportive of businesses, as seen in initiatives, especially from IE Singapore, which help startups like mine expand into nearby countries.
Already IE Singapore is helping us with licensing in Malaysia, for example. I want to say one more thing: I feel our economy is very strong, so notwithstanding outside factors like Wall Street gyrations, or political tensions in north-east Asia. Singapore is a strong country and always a good place to grow your business.
Edwin Khew Teck Fook
The Institution of Engineers, Singapore
I AM excited about three things - talents, technopreneurs and technicians. I look forward to seeing many more young Singaporeans choosing engineering for their tertiary education as it offers a rigorous, broad-based academic foundation. Engineering-trained minds can access multiple career pathways in industry and government, especially in the new economic future envisioned by the Committee on the Future Economy.
IES also hopes to see more engineers becoming technopreneurs as it is establishing a deep-tech incubator and accelerator with the government and institutes of higher learning (IHLs) to facilitate and fund development of high-tech hardware such as robots, autonomous vehicles, water treatment and clean energy systems for manufacturing and assembly in Singapore, to capture expanding global markets.
To achieve this, we need engineers, highly-skilled technicians and master craftsmen. IES will change its constitution to welcome technicians and provide continuous education and training programmes jointly with IHLs and ITEs for technicians to develop into highly-skilled master craftsmen.
Managing Director, Asean & Korea
SINGAPORE has always been a leading advocate and adopter of innovative technology; however, we need to be wary of threats that will undoubtedly look to make their mark in the Year of the Dog. The Year of the Rooster was eventful as we saw the growing resilience of ransomware and the evolution of the sophisticated hacker that compromised the potential of cryptocurrency. To proactively combat such threats, Singapore should look to invest in next-generation IT security and predictive protection capabilities to protect existing infrastructures, and be the vanguard for new innovative technologies.
As a Smart Nation, these investments will provide greater impetus to the growth of Singapore as a regional and global technology hub.
Chairman & CEO, Asia-Pacific, Middle East & Africa,
THE ongoing digital transformation is on the top of Grey's agenda. Tech innovation will continue to play a role in many industries including communications, healthcare and banking. To adapt, we have implemented ongoing projects such as Grey Singapore's successful launch of Grey Adventures, an initiative to host startups with complimentary skills including data, marketing tech, e-commerce and creative tech, within our own office space. Our aim is to establish a bridge between corporate clients and startups where we provide our clients and brands tech knowhow and easier access to new products and innovations whilst the startups get access to brands and Grey's creative expertise.
Shopper marketing, which is an area of strength for Grey, will also continue to be an area of significant focus for us and we are continually tapping and adjusting to the insights we have on behavioural changes in the way people shop.
Area Vice-President, Asean & Korea
THE start of 2018 has been just as unpredictable as an untrained puppy but with discipline and guidance, it can soon turn into a loyal companion. Singapore's chairmanship of Asean 2018 coupled with the positive economic outlook are key milestones in this transformation, not only for the country but also the region.
This year, we are excited to continue working with partners to guide agile and data-driven businesses towards Singapore's vision of achieving a digital economy by 2020.
As we welcome the Lunar New Year and the opportunities it brings, we wish everyone a paws-perous Year of the Dog!
V R Srivatsan
Managing Director, SEA
ADOBE has done well as a company in the past year, and I'm upbeat about the opportunities in the coming Year of the Dog.
In the new year, we will see current trends such as AI, machine learning, augmented reality, virtual reality, and even mixed reality, becoming more prevalent, and businesses will need to evolve to keep pace with new consumer demands.
In the experience era today, consumers expect to be delighted at every touchpoint with a brand, putting more pressure on content creation and delivery than ever before.
Digital technology, data analytics, and creativity will continue to shape the way companies connect with customers.
As businesses increase investments in these areas, including up-skilling of the workforce, I look forward to engaging in deeper conversations around Adobe's unique strength of combining the art (of content creation) and science (of data), as well as our AI framework Adobe Sensei, to help organisations deliver standout experiences.
Driverless cars, cashier-less supermarkets, and voice assistants, have all become a reality today. In the year ahead, we can expect to see more businesses investing in bolder, more creative ideas; more empowered employees; smarter nations; and a whole new approach to the traditional businesses.
SINGAPORE'S data centre industry will continue its growth as the ‘Gateway to South-east Asia'. Singapore's value as a data and technology hub lies in its impressive interconnectivity of at least 17 submarine cables providing high bandwidth connection. This has helped Digital Realty establish itself as one of the primary destinations for data centre deployments here.
It is important that the nation maintains its reputation with data consumption expected to increase exponentially.
Data centres play an important role as the backbone of a digital economy and we foresee Singapore continuing to lead Asia, as a safe, secure, connected home for data.
Lieu Yew Fatt
Omron Electronics Singapore
SINGAPORE is today a digitally advanced country. It sits at the top spot of the 2017 IMD World Digital Competitiveness rankings and is also placed in the Stand Out section of the World Economic Forum's Digital Evolution Index.
Government initiatives and a technologically-advanced business environment definitely have done much to propel the country to this first-world status. However, the onus is on businesses to continue to drive growth, contribute to the country's economic stability, and cement its position as a leading smart city.
This year, we look forward to helping Singapore enterprises discover the value of automation and robotics, and recognise how they can best leverage these advanced technologies to improve their operations. As we work towards building prosperity together, we must also not forget to make use of our innovation and knowledge to improve lives and contribute to a better society.
Tan Mui Huat
President and CEO, Asia
AS the oil and gas industry continues its gradual recovery and One Belt One Road opens up new market opportunities in the new lunar year, we hope that mitigating health and travel security risks remains high on the boardroom agenda.
As the saying goes, prevention is better than intervention. Corporations are increasingly recognising that investing in the health, safety and security of their mobile workforce is good for a corporation's bottom line, business resilience, employee goodwill, and contributes to their overall sustainability.
Likewise, as Singapore gears up to be a Smart Nation, we want to continue embracing and investing in digitalisation which will be fundamental to enabling our travel risk management solutions and enhancing our client experience.
WITH the new plan passed under the security industry transformation map (ITM), we expect more security companies to adopt technology to address security concerns. As technological developments continue to disrupt the sector, there is also a need to continue up-skilling the workforce to match these structural changes.
Milestone is at the heart of overall video security solutions, promoting the highest level of competency in the latest IT infrastructure to support security systems. Through our collaboration with institutions such as ITE West, we aim to cultivate a highly skilled workforce ready to take on security challenges of the future.
Albert Phuay Yong Hen
Chairman and CEO
Excelpoint Technology Ltd
YEAR 2017 was a milestone for Excelpoint. Despite economic fluctuations, the electronics and semiconductor industry has seen significant growth. We celebrated our 30th anniversary, with a record revenue crossing US$1 billion, marking our presence as the Asia-Pacific's leading electronic components distributor and technology solutions provider.
We believe the Year of the Dog 2018 will be a promising year ahead for many, especially for our industry. As we escalate our efforts towards the next wave of technology, the Internet of Things (IoT), we see heightened opportunities in this segment. We look forward to featuring our in-depth research and development and technical capabilities that combine cutting-edge technologies from our strategic suppliers into advanced and useful applications.
We believe IoT will become a ubiquitous presence at home, at work and even in agriculture in the near future, making life easier, smarter and more efficient for everyone.
We continue to see the importance of collaborations with major technology giants and suppliers to create a sustainable ecosystem of innovation, business relevance and value for all our stakeholders, as well as identify additional integrated products and solutions to expand our portfolio.
Ahead of Singapore Budget 2018, we hope that there would be more measures for the electronics, semiconductor and technology sectors, and for mid-sized companies like ours. We also hope for more collaborations with startups, so that we can innovate and grow together in a sustainable way.
President and General Manager for Asia-Pacific & Japan
I BELIEVE the Year of the Dog will be one of transformations and opportunities. Many business leaders are looking forward to seeing how the Singapore Budget 2018 will continue to encourage companies to adopt technology to be more productive and to innovate.
Personally, I am excited to see how enterprises will use technology, and software in particular, to innovate the next big shift. It is a given that we are long past the point where technological advancements are used merely to improve efficiencies.
Today, organisations need to put applications at the heart of their business in order to reinvent their relationships with their customers. To do this, they need to build a modern software factory. Organisations will be able to reinvent their software development processes to consistently deliver high-quality applications and business value while developing a sense of digital intuition using data generated by customers, employees and partners.
Organisations that can transform this data into actionable insights will be champions of Singapore's new digital economy as they will have the capabilities to innovate original business models and create new revenue streams.
VP and General Manager, Apac
IN 2018, there will be a heavy focus on digital transformation: businesses of all kinds will be evaluating how to best utilise and implement new technologies to provide improved, streamlined experiences for their customers.
For example, in the marketing software industry, which dataxu is a part of, media agencies are transforming by investing in programmatic technologies to automate the media buying process, unearth customer insights on behalf of their clients, and deliver advanced analytics. Today, taking a leadership position on technology differentiates the best agencies and ensures a seamless ad experience for the end consumer as the media landscape evolves.
General Manager, Building Technologies & Solutions Singapore
WHERE dogs were once undisputedly man's best friend, technology is now a close contender - compelling businesses to strive to fill the persistent gap of a shortage of engineers in Singapore's business ecosystem. The public service announced plans to recruit 1,000 more engineers in 2016, but the root challenge of nurturing industrial talent remains.
At Johnson Controls, we're committed to building tomorrow, today and hope to see businesses complement government efforts by equipping students in particular with technical skills and authentic real-world training necessary to succeed in diverse work environments. This year, we'll be working closely with tertiary institutions in Singapore to help futureproof the workforce, and are looking forward to the opportunities the new year will bring.
Managing Director, Asean
As our nation continues to set the example for Smart City and digital transformation initiatives, it is imperative for enterprises to safeguard customer data in order to maintain the trust of their loyal customers.
Compromising data security for convenience and efficiency is a shortcut that organisations cannot afford to make. Many of our customers are now considering the hybrid cloud option to get the best of both public and private clouds. The ability to keep sensitive and important data on-premise, while keeping unpredictable workloads on public cloud, is an ideal option for any companies that want to stay ahead of the race in the Year of the Dog.
Tan Boon Yen
The Institute of Internal Auditors Singapore
TO prepare for the future economy fraught with uncertainty and volatility, organisations will require people with new and relevant skills. SkillsFuture establishes a coherent eco-system to support the transformation of Singapore's workforce. With the lengthening of career lifespan, organisations must develop a culture of lifelong learning, with support for employees' skills upgrading to better prepare them for the future.
As the primary professional body for internal auditors, we are part of the ecosystem to support our members to embrace a growth mindset. We hope to successfully build a pipeline of internal audit professionals by helping professionals, managers & executives with multi-disciplinary backgrounds to reskill and embark on a new career in internal audit through the Professional Conversion Programme for Internal Auditors.
Guided by an optimistic outlook for 2018, we look forward to SkillsFuture delivering more impactful outcomes with continuous learning being embedded in the DNA of all organisations.
This requires a collective effort of all employers and employees from both the public and private sectors.
Quek Siu Rui
Co-founder & CEO
The Year of the Dog, 2018, is going to be hugely important for us at Carousell. We spent the previous year laying the groundwork for our adtech capabilities and introduced new premium features, such as Bumps and Carousell Pro, to help serve the wider community of sellers from individuals to professional sellers.
This year, we're also ramping up our plans, particularly for Singapore, Hong Kong and Malaysia, as we continue to transform Carousell into a sustainable and enduring company.
Our mission is to inspire everyone in the world to start selling. Everyone will have something to sell, especially as e-commerce gathers pace in the region and people buy even more things. With Carousell, we hope to inspire more people to sell on these underused items to someone who might be able to use them more.
We are continually innovating and investing in the latest technology such as AI and data science to create a more seamless Carousell experience for all our users.
Robin C Lee
Bok Seng Group
EVERY year brings with it exciting opportunities and unpredictable challenges. At the macro level, the recent stock meltdown was a much-needed release of steam that had been built up over the past few years in a bloated economic pressure cooker.
The warming relationship between the two Koreas is heartwarming with a sense of unexpected though welcome amiability. As for our business, it is not going to be a walk in the park as challenges remain in our services to the oil&gas and infrastructural sectors.
Still, we are grateful that Singapore as a country remains stable from years of preparatory efforts in ensuring economic resiliency. To ensure that we will have a good Year of the Dog in 2018, we must remain resolute on keeping our operations lean and productive, strengthen our core competencies while quickening our pace in developing and growing our businesses in the enlarging regional market. Huat Ah!
Senior Vice-President of Asia-Pacific, China and Japan
2018 is shaping up to be an exciting year, and one of the most satisfying parts of my job is observing the team's growth and accomplishments.
I'm also looking forward to being a part of the technology momentum in Singapore - technology is increasingly playing a big role as businesses look to drive automation and efficiency, especially with the shortage of ICT manpower and talent. This includes investing in infrastructure to address cybersecurity concerns, and meeting the future demands of a Digital First world that is “always on”.
As the digital economy takes off, I hope to reach my goal of being a trusted advisor and solutions provider to help our clients in their journey of becoming Digital First.
Lim Soon Hock
PLAN-B ICAG Pte Ltd
I CONTINUE to wish for more progress and an eventual breakthrough in Singapore's relentless efforts to develop and build a critical mass of large local companies, to drive and support our future economy and to create high value-added jobs for our people, to complement the MNCs.
To achieve this, which is vital for Singapore's future survival, the government must resist the temptation to do more of the same, but have the gumption to implement revolutionary measures. For example, it makes sense to identify a select group of promising SMEs, and pour in all the requisite resources to transform them into large local companies, much like what the government did with the GLCs.
I would also like to see entrepreneurship education being implemented nationwide in all schools, not only to strengthen and deepen a sustainable and more dynamic culture of entrepreneurship, but to groom a new generation of entrepreneurs.
That it will take time to develop this critical mass of large local companies should no longer be used as an excuse by all key stakeholders. Time is no longer on our side.
Managing Director, Asia-Pacific Office
Talent Plus Pte Ltd
THE Year of the Dog brings much aspiration for us. As a talent-focused organisation, fierce global competition and regional demand for talent drive our growth. As Singapore's talent pool is at a premium and evolving, how companies respond to technology shifts and employee engagement and fulfilment, coupled with the advent of workforce agility requirements and on-demand learning needs, all push at the business models that leaders are accustomed to.
As we anticipate the new year with preparation of more efficient and expedited processes, and as we build for diversity and value centricity, we look forward to pounce this year.
Managing Director, Apac
OVERALL we are quite optimistic about the business, and look forward to rapid developments in two areas:
2018 will be critical for 5G. 5G will come faster than predicted and it will cause big disruptions as it becomes the beginning of a new era for connectivity.
Even in its early stages, there has been a heavy and widespread investment into 5G, with many providers and organisations already committing resources to test the equipment, technology and uses for the next-generation systems.
The transition from 4G to 5G will present numerous business opportunities across multiple verticals. It will ultimately make connectivity much easier and will usher in a new wave of technology and growth for many organisations that otherwise would not be possible.
Software is Everywhere, Really: Virtualisation technology has driven a revolution in large-scale networked computing, enabling the rapid emergence of cloud architectures that offer radically new approaches to delivering value.
As this trend accelerates in the networked computing world, the broad application of this concept to electronic systems will enable new breakthroughs in application performance and value.
Traditional approaches will be disaggregated and reassembled in new ways to optimise the combination of high-performance customised hardware and the flexibility of software.
Group Managing Director
Ademco Security Group
I HOPE that the Year of the Dog will see Singaporeans come closer as One. That we all continue to love and appreciate the racial peace and harmony we enjoy. That Singaporeans continue giving to and helping one another with compassion and heart. People such as the winners of the Singaporean of the Year award past and present - like Madam Noriza Mansor and Dr Goh Wei Leong - serve to inspire all of us.
On the business front, I hope that the Singapore entrepreneurial spirit continues to grow. A strong core of Singapore-owned and operated businesses is vital to the continual economic sustainability in the longer term for our island.
Managing Director, South-east Asia
THIS year, we look forward to continuing and expanding on how ThoughtWorks can give back to society, grow, and develop the tech talent pool in Singapore. We are already collaborating with government agencies to nurture technologists via immersive mentorship programmes such as ThoughtWorks Jumpstart! and are looking forward to more community outreach initiatives.
As a business leader, I will also focus on growing and developing ThoughtWorkers in the Year of the Dog to align individual personal goals with organisational capabilities development, with a commitment to helping our clients achieve their goals through partnerships that bring engineering excellence to those who want to bring technology to the core of their business.
Zaheer K Merchant
Regional Director (Singapore & Europe)
QI Group of Companies
IN the Year of the Dog, sustaining and fostering new business networks is one of the top priorities for our company. Equally important is the need to acknowledge and reward the effort of our employees for the success and milestones we achieved in 2017, investing in various programmes to upgrade the skills of our employees to aid them in reaching their full potential and be able to contribute meaningfully in society.
Not just as a company but as a society (and certainly a country) we remain firmly committed to certain social causes to help improve the lives of the less fortunate. For those of us who have relatively more, recognition of the importance of benefitting those who are less fortunate provides a grounding which is often lost or has become just a cliché.
I hope this will develop our employees as much as ourselves on a personal and professional level.
I LOOK forward to stability in the stock market, in GDP growth and in the geopolitical climate so that Singapore and its people will continue to prosper.
As a business, we will continue to embrace a new transformation strategy to compete effectively, whether through digitalisation, AI or other technological tools.
The current economic restructuring continues to affect businesses one way or another. The cost of doing business remains a challenge for many so I hope that the Wage Credit Scheme and the Productivity & Innovation Credit Scheme will be extended in the upcoming Singapore Budget, as they have been very helpful for many companies, especially SMEs.
Additionally, the current SkillsFuture programme could be modified and enhanced to accelerate focused training to meet the new demands of the new economy.
Aside from macro policies and productivity support, companies should help themselves by having the right HR strategies in place. Therefore, I also hope to see more companies invest in HR development, and more government support specifically for this purpose.
ECONOMIC growth has been taking on speed in the last few years and likewise the incidence of fake news, accusations and disputes has increased.
My hope for the year ahead is for the world (and Singapore) to be a peaceful place with improved relationships between countries. At the individual level, where graciousness is being exercised at all levels. I am also looking forward to Singapore putting more emphasis on the Kindness Movement. At our firm, we continue to work on respecting one another in all the things we do.
Hari V Krishnan
PROPERTYGURU helps property seekers make a better, more confident property decision. Our recently published Consumer Sentiment Survey indicates renewed optimism in the Year of the Dog with consumers' perceptions of their affordability increasing by five points at the end of 2017, after remaining flat since 2015.
However, we'd also like to sound a note of caution, as high home prices remain the top concern among home seekers. With over 16 new launches expected to hit the market in 2018, after a spate of record land sales and frenzied en bloc activity, our outlook for the year anticipates an increase of at least 5 per cent in private condo prices.
Homebuyers looking to enter the market should do their homework, go in sooner rather than later, and be careful not to overstretch on finances. It's going to be an interesting time for the property market in 2018! Gong Xi Fa Cai!
PeopleWorldwide Consulting Pte Ltd
ENTERING the year of the Dog, at least it brings hopes of better and more exciting news than the year past.
Economically, growth is on the cards across the region and beyond, including the US. The Wall Street's meltdown wiping more than US$5.2 trillion off global markets is not quite in the same league as the 2008 financial crisis of 2008. It is a cyclical pullback, a correction that should not be seen as anything catastrophic.
The concerns to most Singaporeans will be how our Budget will be rebalanced with an exponentially higher social spending (on healthcare, education and defence) and how the taxes from corporate, personal income to GST will impact average Singaporeans. These are the bread-and-butter issues confronting our political leaders. The next generation political leadership transfer will have great impact on Singapore. Faith and trust in this leadership will be the bedrock of Singapore's economic success and geopolitical balancing. All these questions about who will be Singapore's next PM will hang over the country until probably next year.
AS leader of AYP, my focus for the company in the Year of the Dog would be Business Innovation. Our priority is to create value from improvements in productivity and performance for all our products and services, especially our flagship product, Juztalent, to go above and beyond for our customers.
Through this SaaS HR productivity software, we endeavour to transform information systems through a comprehensive suite of payroll, leave, claims and time management solutions.
HR information systems (HRIS) are intricately linked to various operational areas within an organisation. Therefore, a well-designed HRIS with robust architecture and implementation can produce real and sustainable productivity gains. In light of the unceasingly competitive landscape within our city-state and the Asia-Pacific, this calls for a favourable growth strategy - and that is utterly inconceivable without a sound HRIS software in place.