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SME100 AWARDS 2019

SMEs continue to boost economy

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THE SME100 Awards 2019 continue to shine the light on Singapore's fastest growing companies which are still doing well despite challenging times. The SME100 Awards have been held annually in Malaysia since 2009 and in Singapore since 2015. The Awards also debuted in Indonesia this year, while Vietnam will be the fourth country soon.

The SME100 Awards are organised by Business Media International (BMI) which is a leading business-to-business publisher. Among its publications are SME Magazine, HR Asia, Capital Asia, and World Halal Business.

A new survey conducted by SME Magazine reveals that small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in Singapore are growing despite challenging economic conditions. And startups shine bright among SMEs in Singapore, defying economic trends.

Even though the Singapore economy grew by a mere 0.1 per cent in the second quarter of this year, according to Ministry of Trade and Industry (MTI) data, the SMEs surveyed by the magazine posted an average revenue jump of 109 per cent compared to the previous year.

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The survey also recorded the revenue growth of startups less than three years old, which posted average revenue increases of six times compared to the previous year. "While the records set by these fast moving companies may not be representative of all SMEs, it dispels the myth that business has been difficult for SMEs in general in Singapore," says William Ng, group publisher and editor-in-chief of SME Magazine during the announcement of the survey results cum SME100 awards ceremony.

The SME100 team surveyed 2,000 top SMEs in Singapore between February and May this year. Out of these, 50 fast moving SMEs were selected based on quantitative criteria such as revenue growth and profit, and qualitative criteria such as business outlook, investment in training, and R&D efforts, to receive the SME100 Award.

Among the award recipients are architectural firm Archipedia Pte Ltd (AK+), retailer Mthai (S) Pte Ltd, as well as startups Singapore Facilitists Pte Ltd and Wellaholic Pte Ltd.

SMEs participating in the survey are both optimistic and cautious over the rapid pace of technological development and greater regional economic integration. Technological disruption is a major concern for SMEs.

"Many SMEs continue to feel the heat from both technology-based disruptors in their industry and from regional competitors who are adopting technology to outpace them in the market. Almost every SME surveyed realises the importance of a digital strategy, but many do not have the resources or the capability to implement one.

"SMEs here see the potential in being part of a larger economic community," says Mr Ng. "At the same time, many SMEs are concerned about the increased competition, and the associated risks of regionalisation."