Waking up after the very first Asia Pacific PropTech Summit 2021 (APPS2021) was no easy feat. Months of hard work, long evenings debating – a gazillion of phone calls and emails later, the event started taking shape.

Teamwork is what led to the success of APPS2021, which was organised by the Malaysia PropTech Association in conjunction with their regional PropTech partners. The active participation of MaGIC, MDEC and Cradle lent a very positive impact to the event.

The First Malaysian PropTech Virtual Event With More Than 100 Speakers From 20 Different Countries Participating

Over the course of two days, a programme was laid out over 41 sessions with more than 100 international and local speakers and panellists plus a team of moderators and emcees who all contributed to the success of this virtual event. The aim of APPS2021 was to first create a widespread awareness on the multiple and very different digital solutions available from local as well as international start-ups. This would assist property stakeholders to plan, construct, transact and manage their projects in a more efficient and modern way. Secondly, it also aimed to expose all members of the Malaysia PropTech Association and their solutions on a global platform while also setting the stage for a faster and more resilient growth of this new ecosystem.

PropTech and The Start-ups’ Funding Challenge

There could not be a successful start-up event without the active participation of private, corporate and public funders. Starting from the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) which the Malaysia PropTech (MTA) Association signed on with Cradle Fund Sdn Bhd (a government lead agency providing support and funds to the local start-up ecosystem) and continuing with panel discussions on the potential of this rather new “tech” industry to finally come, during two parallel sessions held on Friday afternoon – one presenting a highly innovative “peer to peer” crowdfunding proposed by MoneySave (M) Sdn Bhd with the other working to bring directly to the event the well-established “Enter the Tigers’ Lain” organised by the Malaysia Business Angel network (MBAN).

This is an event that has become very popular during the past six years which bring together start-ups from different ecosystems and investors – or better known as angel investors to kickstart with pre-seed or seed funding those armed with the most promising tech solutions. The winner and first runner up of the exciting pitching battle respectively include VendFun (www.vendfun.com) and ProSales (www.prosales.tech). In fact, MBAN judges have been praising the quality of all participants and are looking forward to closer cooperation with MPA.

During the two days event, all aspects of the property industry were discussed. From planning, construction and transactions to management – these were the central topics of all the panel discussions. Education and PropTech has been another important pillar of the event as this relatively young industry needs to attract the brightest minds and talents. To do so, special cooperation programmes are way under discussion between the association and several local universities to enhance their readiness to work off fresh graduates through special internship programmes and talent farming initiatives.

Last but not least, the always present theme of ESG and the possible SDG-2030 impact that PropTech can bring forward through its solutions were also debated. Specifically, goals 4, 5, 8, 9 and 11 have been the main focus and commitment of MPA.

Attracting Both Local and International Delegates

The overall success of APPS2021 was due to two main aspects: the variety of topics and speakers besides the international allure of the delegates who came in droves. Over the two days, more than 600 unique visitors from over 20 countries entered the virtual expo. The Auditorium meanwhile provided by Unissu in the UK, is aimed at attending to panel discussions, engaging with the speakers plus posing questions to better understand the high potential prospect of investing in both property and proptech.

What further made this event especially special was the fact that all sessions were live panel discussions. The organising committee from the Malaysia PropTech Association clearly came with a vision – on determining where to lead the event plus how to address some of the pain points in the industry such as creating a more conducive and resilient property ecosystem, helping developers in planning demand driven projects, dispose or re-use of unsold residential and commercial properties and in general, to revitalise the whole built environment toward higher sustainability and regenerative practices.

No doubt the past two years have been the toughest since more than 100 years but it also true that innovation and changes are always brought in through difficult times. And no doubt, MPA and its APPS2021 have been setting a new benchmark for the whole region which is attracting positive attention to Malaysia from overseas.

Malaysia PropTech Association, its members, local and international partners plus all industry stakeholders who have participated and contributed to the success of APPS2021 are looking forward to welcoming you next year to APPS2022.

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