Businesses are encouraged to explore new fundraising methods

by S BIRRUNTHA / pic credit:

MALAYSIAN entrepreneurs are encouraged to explore new fundraising methods instead of the traditional way of obtaining financing to scale up their businesses and operations.

Gould Studio CEO Peter Gould (picture) said there is a growing interest among entrepreneurs nowadays in exploring new fundraising methods via digital platforms.

He added that one of the fundraising methods that are gaining popularity is the blockchain-enabled smart contract, which is deemed as a highly interesting model.

Smart contracts are programmes stored on a blockchain that run when predetermined conditions are met, which is typically used to automate the execution of an agreement so that all participants can be immediately certain of the outcome, without an intermediary’s involvement or time loss.

They can also automate a workflow, triggering the next action when conditions are met.

“Some people are exploring this method now and I would really encourage people to think about its potential.

“Then we will be able to see new models of fundraising starting to gain traction,” Gould said during Maybank Islamic Bhd’s virtual Global Connect Forum yesterday.

He also emphasised that entrepreneurs should also intensively explore the digital platform for fundraising models such as the non-fungible tokens.

Meanwhile, Maybank Islamic executive VP and head of customer experience management and business enablement Akram Mackeen said entrepreneurs should also incorporate environmental, social and governance (ESG) principles into their businesses to make it easier to obtain funding.

He noted that most corporate and Islamic banking sectors are now ESG-friendly and are also on the lookout for new growth opportunities.

“Therefore, this will provide a vast platform for entrepreneurs to secure funding support,” he said.

On another note, Maybank Islamic CEO Datuk Mohamed Rafique Merican pointed out that the pace of adoption of ESG within Islamic finance industries differs across the various jurisdictions, some well ahead of others and the rest lagging.

He said being a very broad area, ESG should not just be about the framework or the tool but more importantly about how do we build the capacity and integrate it into the practices of Islamic finance.

He also added that there is also a call for more collaborative actions among private and public sectors and the regulators to bring the area of ESG and Islamic finance into the global sustainability agenda.

“Islamic finance is the real force for good and now, how do we support the acceleration of ESG into Islamic finance to maximise the real impact,” he said in his closing remarks during the final day of the Global Connect Forum yesterday.