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How the Malaysian government is using MaGIC to boost a 'people-centric economy'

AvantiKumar | Sept. 7, 2017
MaGIC CEO Ashran Dato’ Ghazi reveals how IDEA will address a nationwide disconnect between impact driven enterprises (IDEs) and resources.


Photo: Launch of IDEA


   Two new initiatives will help to address a nationwide disconnect between impact driven enterprises (IDEs) and resources as well as build greater opportunities, according to Cyberjaya-based Malaysian Global Innovation & Creativity Centre (MaGIC).
Earlier this week, MaGIC launched IDEA, which stands this time for Impact Driven Enterprise Accreditation, described as "a national initiative in collaboration with the Ministry of Finance's National Entrepreneur Development Office (NEDO)."
Secondly, MaGIC and Tekun Nasional (TEKUN), an agency under the Ministry of Agriculture and Agro-based Industry, also signed an agreement to work together on IMPACT, which is "a project that will develop micro-franchising opportunities for successful impact driven enterprises (IDEs)."
Both moves essentially establish social procurement and accreditation platforms.
When explaining the story behind these moves,  MaGIC's chief executive officer Ashran Dato' Ghazi (pic below) said the main intention is to drive a systemic change, to bring the country's IDE sector to the fore and of course to generate growth from within: basically, to power a more people-centric economy.
Already, 21 IDEs have been accredited and listed on the platform so far and IDEA has secured 44 impact partners, added Ashran.

Ashran_Photo 1 - MaGIC

IDEA and IMPACT were officiated and launched by the chief secretary to the Government of Malaysia YBhg. Tan Sri Dr. Ali Hamsa, the secretary general of Treasury, YBhg. Tan Sri Dr. Mohd Irwan Serigar bin Abdullah, along with TEKUN chairman Dato' Nor Azita Abdul Rahman, and MaGIC's Ashran Dato' Ghazi.
 How to overcome the disconnect

Ashran said the partnership with TEKUN will collaborate under IMPACT, which is a micro-franchising initiative for IDEs to scale up social impact and reach into B40 communities across the nation. (For more information on B40, see - What Budget 2017 means for Malaysia's IT industry)
Meanwhile, IDEA's digital platform will address the disconnect between impact driven enterprises and resources in three ways, he said. These are: to connect IDEs with the public and private sectors; give IDEs access to social procurement opportunities; and help IDEs build credibility through an accreditation programme.
The platform also has an online directory with a list of certified IDEs, impact indicators of the IDEs, and quarterly reports on their impact performance, said Ashran.

Speaking of the accreditation aspect, he said IDEs can prove credibility, earn recognition and speak of their social and environmental intentions.

This ethical aspect will be important when attracting talent and winning business, Ashran continued. For IDEA certification, IDEs need to meet three criteria:  To show commitment to a social or environmental goal and demonstrated a track record of taking business decisions that prioritise impact over profit. Secondly, IDEs need to prove that they are driving significant resources towards achieving their social or environmental goals. Thirdly, IDEs must show a sustainable business - where more than half of the total annual revenue is earned as opposed to donations or grants.

As mentioned, 21 IDEs have been accredited and listed on the platform. These are: Silent Teddies Bakery, The Batik Boutique, Biji, FOLO Farms, GOLD, Dialogue in the Dark, Earth Heir, Project Woodworks, The Picha Project, Stich.A.Giggle, The Truly Loving Company, Agak-Agak, Suri, Foodabox, Greenyards, SOLS 24/7 SE, PT Foundation CHCC, 1L Carwash, Discover Muay Thai, Ecoloo and Project 57.

Why this move matters

By 2018, 700 active IDEs should be live in this sector, he said, adding that one recent example of social procurement was the Kuala Lumpur SEA Games 2017, in collaboration with MaGIC and the Ministry of Youth and Sports (KBS). MaGIC also has succeeded in linking seven Impact partners with 10 IDEs, with total social procurement value of about RM486,000 (US$114,488).
Ashran also revealed that IDEA has secured 43 impact partners so far, above the initial target of 30. Current IDEA network partners include UEM Edgenta, Pemandu Associates, Taylor's Education Group, World Bank Malaysia, AmInvestment Bank, IOI Group, and Cyberview among others.
"Today's launch is a significant milestone, for MaGIC and Malaysia, on our journey to inspire a social enterprise movement and develop the impact driven enterprise sector," he summarised.
"MaGIC has been a driving force of the impact driven enterprise sector in Malaysia since 2014," Ashran said. "Prime Minister Najib Razak launched the national blueprint in 2015, driven by MaGIC, and the sector is already well positioned to be a new economic driver for Malaysia. It's time for us to progress onto the next stage of growth - and put in place the elements we need to create systemic change, helping ensure that the sector is self-sustaining and equitable along the way."
Malaysian Prime Minister YAB Dato' Seri Mohd Najib Tun Abdul Razak said at the initial launch: "The impact driven enterprise sector is well positioned to be a new economic driver for Malaysia with its two-pronged approach: cultivating entrepreneurship while solving crucial social issues at the same time." (For more in-depth insights, see - What's really in store for Malaysia's IT industry in 2017?)

"It is important for the government, along with the public and private sectors to join forces and support IDEs not least because their potential to scale-up and create large-scale change is infinite," he said.

"Engaging with IDEs is one of the easiest and most effective ways to address the socio-economic disparities in Malaysia, helping the government's national drive to double the B40 community's income by 2020 and uplift their standard of living," Ashran added.
"This is why we are very excited to launch IDEA, a landmark initiative that aims to solve the challenges' which often limit IDEs from achieving growth, despite their strong passion to create change," he said. "IDEA will help their efforts to create positive social change, helping them demonstrate credibility and providing them access to resources and opportunities. In turn IDEA also provides a platform which will help the public and private sectors to address community issues as part of the way they do business, helping ensure inclusive economic growth in Malaysia,"
To see some key news features about Digital Malaysia and MaGIC, visit:


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