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Talent shortage threatens growth of Southeast Asian start-ups

Some are opening tech hubs in India, China, US to attract experienced workers

Technicians at a startup in Singapore discuss their software. (Photo by Ken Kobayashi)

SINGAPORE -- The shortage of homegrown tech talent is the most pressing issue for Southeast Asia internet startups' growth, according to a joint research report by Google and Temasek. The problem has caused some players to open tech hubs in China, India and the U.S., where top engineering talent is more readily available.

The report notes that many Southeast Asian startups "have transformed from two-person projects into substantial businesses" as funding continues to grow rapidly due to opportunities presented by a growing middle class with greater spending power.

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