Southeast Asia

The Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) encompasses Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam — countries with a multitude of ethnicities and languages but tied together by culture, business networks, trade relationships, and shared resources. Southeast Asia is the world’s fifth-largest economy and has enjoyed remarkable economic progress in recent years. Much of its growth is due to an expanding labor force and increasing urbanization, making this highly diverse region a key focus for many companies across industries.

Facts & Figures
About Southeast Asia

$3.11 Trillion

Southeast Asia’s

GDP in 2020

Icon Network

Network of growing megacitites with

75 Million people in the 10 largest citites

Illustration Internet

One of the world’s fastest-growing internet

markets with 70.8% internet penetration


Home to 14 unicorns, including

Lazada and Zalora, who have German roots!

Source: Statista (2021), The Straits Times (2021)

Southeast Asia Snapshot Report

With over 680 million people living in Southeast Asia, the region is home to world-class tech hubs, advanced infrastructure, and heavily populated emerging markets. Download the free Southeast Asia Snapshot Report get comprehensive insights, top tips, and opportunities to expand your business to Southeast Asia

for German Startups

Southeast Asia is a rapidly developing region with a growing talent pool, open business culture, and progressive regulatory systems that make it attractive for business expansion.

Majority of Southeast Asia’s population is young and tech-savvy, making it easy for digital adoption and technology-driven businesses to gain a first-mover advantage.
By 2022, Southeast Asia’s middle-class consumers will grow by 50M and bring in over $300B in disposable income, showing massive potential for innovation in the health and wellbeing, E-commerce, banking, and hospitality space.
Rapid urbanization and population boom have congested Southeast Asia’s cities and towns, forcing governments to re-look at planning and infrastructure. This opens doors for innovative smart city, mobility, and logistics solutions that help solve short and long-term problems.

Key Industries Include

Illustration Enterprise Software
Enterprise Tech
Illustration Internet
Illustration FinTech
Illustration Mapping
Illustration Syringe
Illustration City
Smart City
Illustration Industry
Industry 4.0

Main Startup Hubs
in Southeast Asia

Main Startup Hubs in Southeast Asia


Ranked as the 2nd most innovative country by Bloomberg, Singapore is renowned for its advanced digital and innovation hubs. The city-state houses 80 of the world’s top 100 tech companies, making it highly attractive for top tech talent.


Southeast Asia’s second-largest city, Bangkok, houses Thailand’s largest financial institutions and key seaports, making it a hub for FinTech, FoodTech, and manufacturing innovation. E-commerce is also a significant sector due to the country’s high internet penetration rate.


Ranked as the 11th emerging startup ecosystem in the world, Malaysian capital Kuala Lumpur is the birthplace of several big-name startups such as Carsome. It is one of the pioneering trailblazers for Southeast Asia’s digital economy and an ideal location for startup incubation.


Indonesia is Southeast Asia’s biggest economy and is home to several unicorns including GO-JEK, Traveloka, and Tokopedia that are disrupting local, regional, and global economies across sectors. The city’s conducive environment allows owners to run a trial of their products before expanding business across the region.


With an average of 10h 56min spent online daily, no other nation is more digitally engaged. The country’s well-established outsourcing industry gives startup founders an experienced talent pool to draw from. Most of the country’s startups are based in Manila, with FinTech, enterprise tech, and InfoTech startups making up a significant share.


Vietnam’s emergence as a startup hub received a boost when foreign and domestic investors signaled their intent to invest $815 million in startups, reflecting a belief that it could rival Indonesia as Southeast Asia’s growth market for tech investments. As part of efforts to become an innovation center, Ho Chi Minh City recently approved a proposal to fund 1,000 startup projects by 2025.

What Others Say

Many startups believe that their success formula that worked in Germany will automatically work all over the world. Expanding into new markets such as Southeast Asia has to be done in a custom way. Although some existing processes in your home market can be replicated, startups must “smart paste” and be willing to adapt to the local nuances and challenges in order to succeed.


Dr. Sian Wee Tan, Executive Director of Finaxar & #GAMentor

German Accelerator provides the local networks, expertise, and access to local specialists to rapidly evaluate these markets and adjust our product-market fit. Singapore and the greater Southeast Asia region are highly competitive and entrepreneurial. We believe we can profit from the entrepreneurial ecosystem and provide cutting-edge and battle-proof solutions to the local markets.


Dr. Guenther Hoffmann, Founder of Lexatexer GmbH

By taking part in the accelerator program, Wagawin gained more visibility with new customers and helped us and the team on the ground to truly deep dive into the Southeast Asian ecosystem. Overall, the program really helped to fast-forward our market expansion plans.


Nicolas Leonhardt, CEO and Co-Founder of Wagawin

Programs We Offer in Southeast Asia

Market Access Program

The Market Access program helps startups to enter Asia with the support of our expert mentors and local team. Startups get access to and enter the identified target markets in Asia, and the program length will be individualized according to their company’s needs.

Singapore Market Discovery AI Program

The Singapore Market Discovery (AI) program helps startups embark on a fast-paced learning journey to understand, discover, and access Singapore’s booming AI market through a highly-customized hybrid program

Local Partners

Logo AHK Malaysia
Logo AHK Philippines
Logo AHK Singapore
Logo AHK Thailand
Logo Enterprise Singapore
Logo NIA
Logo SGInnovate

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