Training Courses

(Oct 2021) Executive Diploma in ASEAN Entrepreneurship & Market Development (2nd Cohort)

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Executive Diploma in ASEAN Entrepreneurship
& Market Development (2nd Cohort)
盟創業與市場拓展行政人員文憑 (第二班)

This programme is designed for business leaders, entrepreneurs, and professionals who intend to expand their businesses to or work in the ASEAN region.

It will explore and analyse the investment ecosystem and important business landscape of the ASEAN countries to help you fully grasp the local situation when planning your business move.


The growth in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) drives a strong supply and demand in various industries including manufacturing, construction, trading, retail, and certainly innovation and technology. Governments of ASEAN countries have been proactively encouraging foreign investment, developing infrastructure and digital transformation,  and promoting ASEAN to become a key destination for foreign direct investment.

  • With 650 million people, ASEAN has the 3rd largest population in the world and a GDP of US$2.8 trillion
  • With a projected annual growth rate of over 5.5% per year, ASEAN is forecast to overtake the EU and Japan to become the 4th largest economy in the world by 2050, behind China, India, and the US
  • Over 380 million people are under age 35 in ASEAN (58% of the population) and ASEAN’s middle class is expected to be 334 million (51% of the population) by 2030
  • Sustainable urbanisation is a key part of this demographic growth. It is estimated that nearly 70% of ASEAN’s population will live in urban areas by 2050

(Source: US-ASEAN Business Council)

According to the Trade and Industry Department of HKSAR, the Free Trade Agreement (FTA) and the Investment Agreement (IA) between Hong Kong and ASEAN entered into force in full in February 2021, enabling Hong Kong SMEs and Tech Start-ups to enter ASEAN markets without barriers and thus encouraging them to start new business opportunities in ASEAN countries.


By taking this programme, participants will be able to:

  1. Understand market opportunities and challenges in ASEAN countries
  2. Comprehend customer behaviors and corporate culture in ASEAN
  3. Master different ways to acquire new customers and find local partners in ASEAN
  4. Familiarise with and leverage resources from the entrepreneur ecosystem
  5. Be aware of the government policies in ASEAN to expand the business and increase investment
  6. Formulate the go-to-market strategy and action plan for the ASEAN market


Date Module / Area Content Venue
 27 Oct 2021 (Wed)

2 Nov 2021 (Tue)

10 Nov 2021 (Wed)

17 Nov 2021 (Wed)

22  Nov  2021 (Mon)

1 Dec 2021 (Wed)







Local experts and Hong Kong professionals in the corresponding region will be the guest speakers to share knowledge and insights about ASEAN:

  • Market analysis
  • Strategic partnership
  • Banking and financing
  • Innovation & technology ecosystem
  • Talent and human resources
  • Industry and professional associations
  • Politics and legal aspects
  • Government support and funding
  • Research labs & universities
Webinar via Zoom
6 Dec 2021 (Mon) Forums for SMEs and Tech Start-ups SME and Tech start-ups are the two fastest-growing sectors in ASEAN markets. Two interactive forums with experienced practitioners will be arranged (details to be confirmed).

*Participants are required to attend at least one of the forums

HKPC Building
16 Dec 2021 (Thur) Final Report Feedback and Networking Participants are required to prepare a business plan for their go-to-market strategy in one or more ASEAN countries and present to a panel of experts for feedback. Webinar via Zoom


DR. TOA CHARM  湛家揚博士

Chairman, OpenCertHub and Founder, Dr. Charm & Company

Charm IMG_7683
  • Former Senior Executives: Cyberport, IBM, Oracle, HSBC and Kingdee 
  • Professor: CUHK, Institute for China Business of HKU, Swiss Business School, U of Chicago Booth
  • Chairman & Principal Advisor of Asia’s AI, Big Data, Fintech, E-Commerce & ESG start-ups
  • Published the book《數碼力大提升》in 2020
  • Received the School of Business Distinguished Alumni Award by CityU of Hong Kong in 2019


Mr Sumit Dutta

Sumit Dutta is the Founder and Chief Executive Officer of ASEAN Business Partners. Prior to this, Sumit spent 26 years working for HSBC, one of the biggest banks in the world, in countries including Indonesia, Vietnam, USA, Hongkong and India.

Most recently, Sumit was the Country Manager and Chief Executive Officer for HSBC in Indonesia from 2014-2019. HSBC is one of the biggest and most profitable banks in Indonesia with profits of $220M in 2019, with 5000 employees in over 100 branches in 30 cities.

Prior to Indonesia, Sumit was Chief Executive Officer for HSBC Bank (Vietnam) Ltd, rated the “Best Foreign Bank in Vietnam” by Finance Asia, and also worked as Executive Director of Techcombank, the largest privately owned bank in Vietnam.

Prior to Vietnam, Sumit worked for HSBC in New York, USA in various roles including Global Head of e-Business, Head of Product Management and Head of Sales Management, and before that in Hongkong and India for HSBC and ANZ Bank.

Sumit holds an MBA in Marketing and Finance and is a Bachelor of Civil Engineering.

Mr Vikash Bengani

Vikash Bengani is the Chief Operating Officer and Head of Industry Research at ASEAN Business Partners. Vikash has over two decades of experience across Asia’s leading financial markets. He has held senior positions at ICICI Bank, Citibank, Indea Capital (a hedge fund) and EIS Global (a family office).

He has worked in diverse roles including trading in equities, commodities and derivatives markets, streamlining operationally complex back offices for securities processing and financial modeling and forecasting of company performance as an equity research analyst. He has also worked as a project finance and structured debt specialist at a Development Finance Institution.

Vikash is a qualified Chartered Accountant from India and a Chartered Financial Analyst from AIMR, USA.  He also holds a Bachelor of Commerce (Hons) degree.

Mr Kula Kulendran

Kula is the Malaysia-based Board Advisor of ASEAN Business Partners.  With 30 years of experience in financial services, Kula is a veteran of the payments industry who has spearheaded change and growth repeatedly during the course of his senior management tenure.

Kula spent over 20 years with American Express, most recently as its Executive Vice President and Head of Global Network Services (GNS) in Japan, Asia Pacific, & Australia. He was instrumental in establishing American Express’ merchant business in Malaysia, penetrating the China market for its GNS business, and reinvigorating American Express’ GNS business in Japan, Korea, and Australia. Among his most notable achievements, Kula was also responsible for forming the company’s GNS JAPA team.

Kula holds an MBA from London Business School.

Mr Alverno Soenardji

Alverno Soenardji is one of the Indonesia-based Board Advisors of ASEAN Business Partners.  With a career spanning 25 years in Finance, Energy and Infrastructure, Alverno is among the most respected senior executives in Indonesia. He is both the CEO of PT Rezeki Perkasa Sejahtera Lestari – one of the very few biomass fueled renewable energy power plants in Indonesia– and the CFO of PT Energi Infranusantara – a special purpose company under Nusantara Infrastructure with the express purpose of investing in Indonesia’s growing energy sector.

Alverno is also serving as the Commissioner of four other organizations, namely, PT Impola Meka Energi, PT Komet Infra Nusantara, PT Dharmanusa Tritunggal, and PT Quattro International.

Alverno holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Civil Engineering from Universitas Trisakti and an MBA from Oklahoma City University.

Ms Tina Singhsacha

Tina is a proven leader with over 25 years of track records of achievements in banking, management consulting and has worked extensively in all ASEAN countries from Thailand to Singapore and Myanmar. Tina now serves as a Senior Advisor to TPG, a global Private Equity fund, to identify attractive growth opportunities in Thailand and the region.  She also served as the Senior Advisor to the President of the Cement Building Material Business of the Siam Cement Group (SCG).  Before returning to Thailand in 2017, Tina served as the Country Head at Standard Chartered Bank in Myanmar. During which she led the reestablishment of the Bank’s presence in the country and launched several initiatives to support the development of the financial sector. With the support of the UK Government, Tina helped founded the UK-Myanmar Financial Services Taskforce, which was instrumental in aiding the set-up of the Myanmar Institute of Directors.

Tina holds a Bachelor of Commerce degree in Accounting and Finance from University of New South Wales and an MBA from Sasin Graduate Institute of Business Administration of Chulalongkorn University.

Ms Thao Nguyen

Thao Nguyen is the ASEAN Business Partners Country Manager for Vietnam. She is a dynamic leader with over 27 years of experience working for both global and local banks in Vietnam. Over the course of her career Thao has held senior leadership roles at HSBC, Citibank, ANZ, Techcombank and VIB serving various corporate clients.

By virtue of her work at these prestigious institutions, Thao has established close working relationships with Vietnam’s State Bank, Ministry of Finance, State Securities Commission and other regulatory bodies.

Prior to joining ASEAN Business Partners, Thao served as SVP – Corporate and Institutional Banking at VIB, working directly with foreign investors in Vietnam. Thao’s past work experiences include serving as Country Head of Financial Institutions at Citibank Vietnam and General Manager of ANZ Vietnam.

Thao’s 27 years of experience working with hiqh-quality, successful Vietnamese enterprises and her strong network with the government and business leaders in Vietnam puts her in a unique position to help guide new entrants into the Vietnamese market.

Thao holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Languages from Hanoi University and an MBA from RMIT University Vietnam.


27 October – 16 December 2021
2:30 – 5:30 pm

Webinar via ZOOM and one face-to-face session in HKPC Building

Cantonese and English
* Simultaneous interpretation provided

  • Owners and executives of small-to-medium enterprises who intend to expand their businesses in the ASEAN region
  • Entrepreneurs, founders and employees of tech start-ups who intend to scale their businesses to and customize their products for the ASEAN region
  • Corporate leaders and executives who intend to plan or adjust their go-to-market strategies for the ASEAN region
  • Professionals and working classes who seek career opportunities in the ASEAN region
  • Final Report (Passing Rate: 60%)

Learners can choose relevant module(s) to attend according to your business needs. A Certificate of Completion of “Executive Diploma in ASEAN Entrepreneurship and Market Development” will be awarded to participants who have obtain the passing rate in assessment, fulfill 75% attendance rate and attended one of the forums.

*10% off discount for Members from supporting organizations

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