This podcast episode, the last one of 2018, features Sarah Huang, a "coffee maker" turned manager, turned entrepreneur who began her adventures in her home country Australia, with an internship, that took her to India, then to Thailand where she became General Manager to set up an office for her company.
Starting at the age of 20 years old, Sarah skipped university, and got her education through her work experience thanks to being a GM. Part of her job was to create and manage a team, find tech talent in Bangkok, at a time where talent was scare, and worked with universities to recruit students to study programming and technology.
Sarah did go back to school, and eventually left the corporate world to try something new as an entrepreneur and with the support of VC Ardent Capital, she and her team they created a retail ecommerce website that sold baby and pet products.
Sarah is now back in the corporate world, working as the Director of Corporate Development at Burda International. And is happy to share her story, experience, and advice for entrepreneurs interested in setting up a startup or business in Thailand.
Alec Goldman, is an American educator and now EdTech entrepreneur who 23 years ago, during the summer between undergraduate and graduate schools, made the decision to audition for Princeton Review as a SAT preparation teacher. Since then he's been unable to shake the educating bug ever since. Over the course of the past 2 decades, Alec has taught, tutored, and trained students and teachers in the field of test prep, spanning assessments from the SAT and TOEFL, to GRE, GMAT, and MCAT. . During the past 11 years in Thailand, Alec has served in positions ranging from Education Director to Curriculum Coordinator to Independent Educational Consultant and University Admissions Counselor. As EdTech is now the hope to disrupt and democracies education, Alec Alec works as Director of Personalized Learning at WeLearn, a that helps each student select and successfully complete accredited online secondary school curriculum from leading universities and high schools around the globe.
Zipporah Gene is a British linguist, journalist, and life-long learner who sometimes get in trouble for her honesty and her ambition. All entrepreneurs have an unapologetic trait that separates them from the rest which Zipporah story all the more interesting. With an education in Japanese, Chinese, and journalism, Zipporah worked freelancing, translating, and work at the International Labor Organization at the UN, her journey of entrepreneurship is truly unique.
Currently Zipporah is the Director of Communication at the American Chamber of Commerce in Thailand, managers her own blog, and a few other side projects.
About the Podcast Episode Curious to learn what it takes to build a startup in Japan, as a foreigner? Well you have landed on the right podcast, as this week's episode I interviewed Abasa Phillips, an American entrepreneur who was always fascinated with Japanese culture at a young age, and spent a few years learning Japanese before starting his professional life in Japan.
Unsatisfied with the corporate world, Phillips took a break and spent time in Thailand learning Muay Thai, and gaining an appreciate for living a healthy and balanced life. With a new inspiration for healthy living, Abasa returned to Japan and left the corporate world to start his own ecommerce website selling his own detox products.
Being a first time entrepreneur, as no easy feat, but Phillips was "dialed into" Japanese society which made his transition a lot easier, but still difficult because he began his startup at the height of the financial crisis in 2008. With the global market crisis, Phillips used his financial savvy skills that pivoted him to be an expert on payment systems for small ecommerce businesses, before being recruited, and re-entering the corporate world, part-time, as he explored starting a business focused on payment systems.
After 3 businesses, Phillips started Zilla, an crypto platform and wallet and platform. His advice for entrepreneurs that want to try their luck in Japan: it's a lot of work, but definitely worth it! Learn more about Abasa Phillips: Zilla, Twitter, LinkedIn