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  • Writer's pictureYoung SEAkers HELLO!!

04.09.20 - 10.09.20 Sup SEAkers!

People wearing protective masks shop for clothes in Jakarta, Indonesia, on Sept. 5, 2020. Indonesia’s capital extended the implementation of some social distancing measures after the number of infections in Jakarta soared and triggered a record jump in fresh cases nationwide.

This Week's News Spotlight:

Jakarta reinstates large-scale social restrictions | China’s Ant group in Southeast Asia | Southeast Asia’s gaming industry amidst Covid-19 | Brunei’s Guerrilla Artchitects revitalising street art | Digital health in Southeast Asia


Jakarta reinstates large-scale social restrictions  - CNA

In the past few days, Jakarta has seen more than 1,000 new infections daily. 

On Wednesday, Jakarta’s Governor announced that the city will re-establish large-scale social restrictions, calling it an “emergency break”. The Covid-19 situation has been worsening in the capital city, with 77% of 4,053 isolation beds currently occupied. The city has a total of 49,397 Covid-19 cases, out of a total 203,342 cases across the whole country.

Residents will be required to work, study, and conduct worship activities from home. Non-essential businesses will also have to operate from home starting on Monday.

China’s Ant group in Southeast Asia - Nikkei Asian Review

"The IPO will give them a lot of capital, which would allow them to make other acquisitions or move further into some overseas markets that they haven't deepened before," Zennon Kapron, director of Singapore-based financial research firm Kapronasia, told the Nikkei Asian Review.

Ant Group’s Alipay is currently available in more than 200 countries and regions, though it has been rolling out primarily to serve Chinese customers. However, the firm has expressed its interest in growing outside of its home market of China; its upcoming IPO, which would be the largest ever in the world if successful, could provide Ant the “firepower” to invest in Southeast Asia’s e-payment players. 

In Southeast Asia, Ant has invested in Thailand’s Ascend Money, Indonesia’s Dana, the Philippines’ Mynt, and Myanmar’s Wave Money. The group applied for a digital banking license in Singapore in January, aiming to serve a “small and midsize business overlooked by traditional banks”, but results have not been released. Ride-hailing firm Grab and gaming hardware company Razer also applied for the license.

Southeast Asia’s gaming industry amidst Covid-19 - The Edge

EVOS Esports raised a total of US$4.4 million in Series A investment back in 2019, and manages 12 eSports teams and 300 gaming talents across Southeast Asia.

Southeast Asia is a region with riding income per capita and smartphone penetration, which are both conducive for e-sports penetration. E-sports chief executive officer Carlos Alimurung pointed out that e-sports audience growth is 8% a year globally, but 26% a year in Southeast Asia.

While Alimurung noted that many live events have been transformed into streaming events, this transition is not necessarily detrimental for e-sports, “because the gaming community and its ecosystem were born online and virtually”.

EVOS Esports marketing and public relations regional head Allan Phang also noted that their viewership went up 50% during the pandemic.

Brunei’s Guerrilla Artchitects revitalising street art - Biz Brunei

“Our team has years of practice doing art on a large scale (compared to more traditional painting-based art) so we’re able to consistently deliver on whole walls, buildings or any large surface a client wants,” said Arif Suhaimi, the team lead.

Guerrilla Artchitects is a collective of street artists from Brunei, and also one that is making waves in the mainstream. Schools, government agencies, and businesses are increasingly interested in producing mural art. Guerrilla Artchitects has tapped on this successfully, with more than 30 commercial projects since the start of 2020.

Guerrilla Artchitects consists of six artists who have been creating art together since their teenage years. They have worked on projects for large corporations like Brunei Shell Petroleum, Pizza Hut, and the Youth Development Centre.

Digital health in Southeast Asia - Bangkok Post

For example, artificial intelligence (AI) and data analytics can be used to predict, automate and advance workflow efficiency and improve patient experience.

Healthcare spending in Southeast Asia is projected to increase from USD 420 billion in 2017 to USD 740 billion in 2025. Countries in the region are making headway in the medical space: Thailand was the sixth best healthcare system in the world in a 2019 survey, and Indonesia and the Philippines are becoming attractive locations for private equity investment in the healthcare industry.

Technology and digitalisation will be essential, according to the Bangkok Post. The Covid-19 pandemic has accelerated digitalisation in the healthcare industry in particular, with technology being used to manage patient volumes and staffing pressures.

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