Exploring ways to expand SME businesses

PETALING JAYA: Small and medium enterprises (SMEs) have the chance to discover how to develop their businesses and take advantage of digital transformation in the first Star Outstanding Business Awards (SOBA) LAB for this year.

The talks will be conducted in Bahasa Malaysia on July 27 at the Cybertorium, Level 2, Menara Star, from 9am to 1pm.

Similar to previous years, this SOBA LAB Petaling Jaya will discuss business issues in two separate sessions with a panel of speakers who consist of SOBA sponsors, industry experts and past SOBA winners.

In accordance with SOBA 2023’s theme of “Shaping new possibilities”, the sessions aim to reveal ways for SMEs to scale up their businesses and to encourage them to grow.

Both sessions will be moderated by Suria FM announcer and founder of ManjaBoost Feeya Iskandar.

Popularly called Cik Piah on the air, Feeya has over 660,000 Instagram followers and has hosted many shows that includes television programmes.

The first session will involve the topic of Business expansion opportunities for SMEs.

It will feature RHB Bank’s group retail distribution regional sales head and SME/chapter lead Ahmad Fauzi Ramli; Credit Guarantee Corp Malaysia Bhd (CGC) business development and products senior vice-president Mohamed Azman Mohamed Taufik; Malaysia External Trade Development Corp (Matrade) transformation and digital trade division, exports advisory unit head Noor Ezzwanee Ahmad; and PKT Logistics Group Sdn Bhd chief revenue officer Kuan Eu Jin as panel speakers.

Panel speakers will be delving into how entrepreneurs can seek business expansion opportunities for a sustainable growth and profitability through exploring various grants and funding options available to SMEs, via networking and partnerships or implementing certain key strategies that can help them build a sustainable business.

The second session, entitled “Navigating the digital landscape” will delve into the benefits and challenges of digital transformation, while providing practical guidance on adopting digital tools, online presence and eCommerce, to enhance competitiveness and reach a wider customer base.

This session will invite panel speakers Nippon Sushi founder and director Che Siti Noraini Nuawi, CoMetro Capital chief executive officer and MDCC chairman Chris Daniel Wong, as well as CelcomDigi’s SME collaboration division business manager Md Rohaizad Hussin.

Siti Noraini was conferred Female Entrepreneur of the Year at the SOBA 2022 awards and has also extended her business empire to include Vietnamese cuisine.

Wong is an expert on digitalisation and has been frequently featured on other media platforms as well.

The discussion will look into the Akka Nasi Lemak Phenomenon and how marketing is conducted in the age of GenZ, which relies heavily on social media and word of mouth.

It will also discuss how to leverage eCommerce platforms in order to grow market reach and increase sales, to employ customer-centric digital experience in SMEs and build necessary skills and talents to thrive in the digital era.

Between each session will also be informative business solution presentations by SOBA sponsors that SMEs can refer to in order to expand their businesses.

The discussion will kick off after registration and light morning refreshments.

Those who are interested in attending SOBA LAB Petaling Jaya are encouraged to scan the attached QR code to sign up.

SOBA 2023 is organised by Star Media Group with CelcomDigi, CGC, PKT Logistics and RHB Bank as main sponsors, and Matrade as official trade promotion partner.

Supported by Bursa Malaysia, SOBA is audited by BDO while radio stations 988 and Suria are official media partners.

To take part in SOBA 2023. For more information, call SMG Events (017-231 1789) or go to www.soba.com.my

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