Though modern Singapore was only founded in 1819, the island city-state is today regarded as a highly developed country, consistently ranking well across a range of criteria. Its reputation as one of the world’s most expensive cities is tempered by its citizens’ impressively long average life expectancy. Furthermore, Singapore hosts one of the fastest internet connections in the world, meaning online business in Singapore is a growing concern for many international corporations. The impressive range of digital companies in Singapore continues to multiply, attracting more business travellers and a subsequent growth in demand for Singapore serviced apartments.
Singapore’s Digital Economy
Small and geographically remote, Singapore has overcome its apparent limitations to become a dominating force in terms of financial trade and oil-refining and trading. Maintaining this power position has of course required significant investment in the world’s leading technology – and this is a trend that is set to continue for years to come. Earlier this year Channel News Asia reported that investment in a ‘digital economy’ was a key pillar of Singapore’s Smart Nation goals – a drive to move Singapore into the next generation of digitised world destinations. With a city-wide digital revolution, Singapore can, as it always has, overcome its limitations – this time by utilising its most valuable resource in the digital age – data.
Boasting impressive internet connectivity, Singapore seeks to further enhance digital technologies in virtually all areas of the city-state, from municipal services, transport and retail, to corporate trade and innovative technology experiments. With the aim to create “a Government that is digital to the core, and serves with heart”, Smart Nation is a national transformation plan permeating all areas of Singaporean life. There is, therefore, a huge appeal to new and existing digital companies in Singapore, especially as the government is allocating more than SG$500 million to support local businesses with their digital transformation.
Tech Companies in Singapore
Singapore has secured its status as a ’miniature silicon valley’ – with 80 of the top 100 global technology firms having a presence in the city. One of the reasons why it’s possible to find so many technology and digital companies in Singapore is the aforementioned infrastructure in place. Described as a ‘plug-and-play’ business environment, Singapore’s IT infrastructure allows for lightning-fast tech inauguration – a process which is enhanced by the city’s super-fast internet speeds. The additional IP protection afforded by the Singapore government’s rigorous IP regulatory framework provides further reassurance for companies moving to the area – with Singapore ranking fourth in the world for intellectual property rights protection.
Beyond its technological prowess, Singapore also entices tech companies with its impressive talent pool. Recent Global Talent Competitiveness indexes rank Singapore second in the world for attracting talent – meaning there is no shortage of international candidates eager to move their career to the city-state. Boasting a high standard of living and an attractive climate, Singapore is rarely passed up for relocation. Furthermore, Singapore is considered a ‘Western-friendly’ nation. With English being one of its four official languages, western workers can easily assimilate to life in Singapore.
Preferred by Foreign Companies
In addition to these key factors, Singapore offers a range of benefits which has resulted in it becoming a preferred location for multinational companies. Formerly a British colony, Singapore’s legal and financial infrastructure closely resembles that of the UK and US, making it particularly business friendly to western investors. This, combined with its status as the world’s busiest port and it being recognised as the gateway to Asia, makes it the first choice for companies looking to break into the Asian market.
Singapore earns its international ranking with an extensive trade reach. Its geographic position means that exporters from Singapore can, effectively, reach 50% of the world’s consumers within just six hours. Facilitating this mass movement is the Singapore Changi International Airport, which serves over 100 airlines flying to over 400 cities. In terms of passenger exchange, more than 62 million pass through the airport annually, presenting a constantly growing consumer and tourist market.
The high number of digital companies in Singapore can also be attributed to the fact that registering a company can take as little as one day. The ease with which companies can establish themselves in Singapore, and the pro-business agenda set out by the government, results in Singapore being regularly recognised as one of the world’s best places to do business. Combine this with a range of fiscal and tax initiatives – including one of the most attractive corporate tax structures in the world – and Singapore’s appeal is clear.
Learn more about Singapore’s corporate appeal with our article on business travel to the country, as well as our countdown of some of the best apartments Singapore has to offer. We can testify to Singapore’s viability as a base for corporate offices in Asia – revisit SilverDoor’s launch of its APAC Headquarters in Singapore.