For startups, choosing the right country to set up shop is critical. Singapore has a wealth of benefits that make it an ideal location for launching a business.
Here are eight reasons the city-state is an excellent place for startups:
1. Robust Infrastructure
Singapore has an excellent infrastructure, with world-class transport and communications systems. This makes it easy for businesses to get started and connect with customers and suppliers around the world.
For example, the city has an extensive and reliable public transport system, which includes a world-class subway system. Changi Airport, voted as the best airport, is a destination hub, with over 7,000 flights arriving each week. It serves at least 100 airlines that fly to 80 countries and 400 cities.
The telecommunications infrastructure is similarly impressive. Singapore has one of the world’s most advanced information and communication technology (ICT) systems, including a state-of-the-art fiber-optic network and top mobile coverage. The city is also among the top ten in the world with the fastest broadband, with speed reaching 255mbps, according to World Population Review.
2. Pro-Business Environment
Singapore has a pro-business environment, with low taxes and regulations that encourage innovation and entrepreneurship. The city-state has an open economy and is ranked as the easiest place in the world to do business, according to the World Bank.
Singapore also offers a wide range of support services for businesses, including funding, mentorship, and incubation programmes. Venture capital companies are active in Singapore, and there is a strong startup culture.
In addition, the government provides various tax breaks and incentives for businesses to start-up, grow, and internationalize. For example, the Startup Scheme offers a reduction in corporate tax rates for the first three years of operations.
Eligible companies may not have to pay taxes on the first $100,000 of their regular taxable income. They can also receive a 50 percent tax reduction on the next $200,000.
The government provides grants and subsidies worth millions of dollars each year to help startups get started and grow. These include the Startup SG Founder Grant and Entrepreneur Development Fund.
3. Skilled Workforce
Singapore has a highly skilled workforce, with one of the highest levels of literacy in the world. The government also invests in training and development, so that workers are equipped with the latest skills and technologies.
This makes it easy for businesses to find the right talent to help them grow and succeed. In addition, Singapore has a large pool of foreign talent, so businesses can easily find the skilled workers they need, regardless of where they are located.
The government also offers various schemes to attract top international talent, including the Global Investor Programme (GIP), which offers permanent residency to qualified investors.
In addition, Singapore has a strong pool of entrepreneurs and business leaders who are willing to provide advice and mentorship for startups. The city-state also has a high number of accelerators and incubators that can help businesses grow faster through access to support programs, funding, and networks.
4. Strong Ecosystem
Singapore has a strong ecosystem for startups, with a wide range of support services and facilities. This includes an extensive network of incubators, accelerators, venture capitalists, and angel investors.
The government also provides various schemes to help businesses connect with these resources. In addition, the city has a large and active startup community, with regular events and meetups where businesses can connect with other entrepreneurs and investors.
The government also organizes annual startup festivals, such as Singapore Fintech Festival, which bring together startups, investors, and government officials.
Singapore also has an extensive network of co-working spaces for startups to share ideas and collaborate with other businesses. There are over 100 co-working spaces in the city, including some that cater specifically to entrepreneurs from particular industries or countries.
The country’s startup ecosystem is supported by a wide range of government agencies including the Singapore Business Federation, Intellectual Property Office Singapore (IPOS), and Singapore Economic Development Board (EDB).
5. Vibrant Culture and Diversity
Singapore is a culturally vibrant and diverse city with a rich history and many attractions. This makes it an attractive location for businesses to set up operations.
The city-state is also home to a large expatriate community, who bring their own culture and ideas to the business community. In addition, Singapore has a strong multicultural ethos, which encourages businesses to embrace diversity and inclusion.
The government is also active in promoting Singapore’s culture and heritage, through initiatives such as the Singapoliday, a $45 million tourism campaign that encouraged locals to explore the country and support businesses dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic. This has helped create a strong sense of identity among Singaporeans and makes the city an attractive place for businesses to operate.
Singapore is an ideal location for startups and small businesses, due to its business-friendly environment, skilled workforce, strong ecosystem, and vibrant culture – everything fledgling companies need to scale fast.