This article was published on November 22, 2010

Kazakhstan beats India and China in startup awards


Kazakhstan beats India and China in startup awards
Fraser Smith
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Fraser Smith

Fraser Smith is an IT consultant based in Shanghai, China. He has over 15 years experience in the media industry working with many major ne Fraser Smith is an IT consultant based in Shanghai, China. He has over 15 years experience in the media industry working with many major news publishers. He is also co-owner and editor of edexpat.com the educational resource for international families, teachers and schools. You can contact Fraser via Twitter by following @FrasSmith.

Last week, Red Herring announced the winners of their “Red Herring 100 Asia” awards for the top one hundred tech. start-ups in the region. The distribution of awards by country held little in the way of surprises with India and China sharing the top two spots with just over 50% of the honoured companies coming from those two nations.

We thought, however, that it would be interesting to correlate the number of winning companies against the population of their home countries so see which countries are producing the most successful start-ups per head of population.  The following, decidedly unscientific, table, based on the results shows a completely different picture.

Rank Country Number of Winners Pop. (Millions) Winners/Million
1 Singapore 10 4.8 2.083
2 Hong Kong 5 6.7 0.746
3 New Zealand 2 4.3 0.465
4 Australia 2 21.4 0.093
5 Taiwan 2 23 0.087
6 Korea 4 48.6 0.082
7 Malaysia 2 27 0.074
8 Japan 9 128 0.070
9 Kazakhstan 1 16.6 0.060
10 India 35 1,139.9 0.032
11 Thailand 2 67.3 0.030
12 Vietnam 2 86.2 0.023
13 China 16 1,324.6 0.012
14 Philippines 1 90.3 0.011
15 Bangladesh 1 160 0.006
16 Indonesia 1 227 0.004

It’s notable that the acknowledged tech. hotspots in the region, Singapore and Hong Kong, hold the top two places with Singapore a clear winner having almost three times the number of winning startups per million population (according to the awards) than it’s nearest rival Hong Kong.

And who would have thought that even Kazakhstan would best the mighty combination of India and China?

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