Smart Axiata Partners with BarCamp Cambodia to Promote Tech And Startups in Cambodia

Smart Axiata has proven yet again that they are more than just a telecommunications company, but one that aims to support the digitisation journey of Cambodia.

On May 23rd, BarCamp officially announced that Smart Axiata would be sponsoring BarCamp Cambodia 2017 – 2018 as part of their joint efforts to build tech and startup awareness in Cambodia.

This partnership will enable BarCamp Cambodia to elevate their annual conferences across these 6 provinces in the Kingdom: Ratanakiri, Kampong Cham, Kampot, Siem Reap, Phnom Penh and Battambang.

Mr Chantra Be, organizer of BarCamp Cambodia, explaining the history of BarCamp and its reach in Cambodia. 

BarCamp Cambodia has always been a huge contributor to the startup scene. With its series of conferences that bring together professionals, startup founders, students and mentors to have an open discussion on their knowledge and experiences relating to entrepreneurship and technology, BarCamp’s efforts has definitely made a mark in Cambodia’s startup development.

This partnership with Smart would help to bring BarCamp’s already comprehensive and established conferences to greater heights.

“This partnership with Smart Axiata enables the BarCamp team to run various programs and invite experienced guest speakers of the Tech and Startup scene from Phnom Penh to demo, present and share their experience with youths and young entrepreneurs in the provinces. Various topics such as starting a business, ICT literacy and incorporating technology at work are expected to be covered. Business competitions will also be held to encourage more local businesses in the tech sector to flourish, as it is an important part of Cambodia’s future economic growth,” expressed Mr. Chantra Be, BarCamp Cambodia Organizer.

Mr Thomas Hundt as he walks the audience through the programmes that Smart Axiata has initiated to help develop Cambodia 

Mr Thomas Hundt, Smart Axiata CEO, also shares the same enthusiasm for this partnership: “We are always enthusiastic about being part of initiatives which contribute towards building a digital Cambodia. ICT literacy and tech awareness are important components of the digital ecosystem. At Smart, we continue striving to play an important role in building the foundations for digital innovation and technopreneurship in the country. Together with BarCamp we hope to spread the benefits of ICT while developing potential and encouraging interest of Cambodians in technopreneurship.”

Barcamp speakers such as Mr Hak Kimthong, co-founder of Kumnit Creative, and Mr Sok Pongsa Metrey, project manager of Nokor Group, along with Javier Sola, Open Institute’s Program Director and Steven Path, President of the ICT Federation of Cambodia were also invited to speak at this launch.

Mr Steven Path explaining Cambodia’s scene from a regional point of view.

“There are about 200 million Internet users in all of ASEAN. But they are forecasting, in the next 7 to 8 years, that it will triple to 600 million users. That is tremendous, explosive growth. I see Cambodia being the biggest beneficiary of this. (With a) growing middle class, our country becoming very stable… There is a lot of room for growth and for the country to develop its human resources and all of the entrepreneurs, which leads to a tech and digital economy,” says Mr Steven Path at the launch.

This is certainly great news for the tech and startup scene in Cambodia. Geeks in Cambodia also truly believes that Cambodia has so much potential ahead of it and such partnerships between major players that are capable of making a lasting impact on the scene would accelerate development.

We are definitely looking forward to what this partnership will entail in future BarCamps, and as always, stay locked to Geeks in Cambodia for more exciting news of the Kingdom’s tech and startup scene!