Venture investors are necessary in technology market
Investment in technology research is a high risk decision, because the life cycle of technology is becoming shorter and the funds spent on research are large. There is also the risk of the technology being copied and having low commercial viability. Therefore, only businesses with strong finances, qualified human resources and a large market, or those which have support from the Government, can invest in technology research and participate in the technology transfer market.
To develop the technology transfer market in Vietnam, it is necessary to attract venture investors. They can mobilize funds to develop technological innovations and commercialize technology research. These investors generally target countries which have strong potential in human resources, regulations to protect intellectual property and a technology transfer market that has been developed or is taking shape.
Vietnam has qualified human resources among the young workforce, and a great demand for technology transfer or investment. So, it is an attractive market for venture investors. An example is the decision to set up a US$100 million venture capital fund by International Data Group (IDG). With this decision, IDG may encourage international investors, including venture investors, to come to Vietnam to seek attractive business opportunities.
This is a golden opportunity that Vietnam should not miss, as only breakthroughs in researching and applying new technologies can help the country bridge the development gap with the rest of the world.
In order to attract venture investors, the Government should offer special treatment, accelerate administrative reform and State-owned enterprise renovation, enforce intellectual property protection and have an attractive policy for profit repatriation. Besides a favorable framework for investment activities and efforts to promote Vietnam to attract international investors, the Government should not ignore potential investors at home and overseas Vietnamese. There is a possibility that many successful businesses want to invest in new areas, as the stock market is not attractive, the real estate market is frozen and bank interest rates are not positive.
To support the development of a technology transfer market, the first step is to establish a center for transactions of innovations and new technologies. Owners of innovations or a new technology can introduce them to venture investors through this center. Meanwhile, investors can contact the owners through the center to make the final decision for investment. The two parties can negotiate issues regarding copyright, brokerage fees and so on.
The Government should offer incentives in land rent and tax for the center. The center should operate under the form of a shareholding company so that it can gain more efficiency in development strategy and capital mobilization. Once the center is in place, activities such as technology evaluation, brokerage and consulting will develop according to supply and demand. The center will be a bridge linking supply in scientific research to demand for investment in technology research. As such, it will help develop a healthy environment for scientific research, encourage public participation in investment in scientific and technological research, and promote the logical application of research results.
- Pham Hung Vy, HCM City