The startup Cinderella story sounds familiar in the age of Silicon Valley, when companies can begin in coffee shops and end up enterprises worth billions. In Myanmar, many businesses are still navigating first chapters in a burgeoning tech scene.
This group includes Yangon–born creative digital agency Revo Tech, short for ‘Revolution Technology.’ The company, founded 2012 by 29–year–old native son Myo Myint Kyaw, has just released its first application: an iPad app called Phew for practicing Myanmar.
The app was built to help children living outside Myanmar remember their mother tongue. The founder himself returned from pursuits abroad to develop his business – and by extension, his homeland. “I love my country and I like to contribute to the nation’s building,” Myo Myint Kyaw says.
Revo Tech is not Myo Myint Kyaw’s first foray into entrepreneurship. He sold crisps and Coke in high school; rented out his PlayStation to friends for an hourly rate; and went on to hawk games on eBay when he moved to London, where he studied Business Information Systems at Middlesex University. “Before I graduated, I know I want to start my own business,” he says.
Today, his company makes web sites, develops mobile apps and software, and provides outsourced services, according to its website. Phew is the first app born and bred by Revo Tech. Myo Myint Kyaw describes creating apps as scratching at itches – holes in the market – felt by himself and his team.
When Myo Myint Kyaw wanted to keep kids from forgetting the Myanmar language, Revo Tech made a colorful app that teaches them the country’s script through practice and gamification. Launched July 26, the app started out attracting 25 downloads per day, but has been gaining “more and more traction,” Myo Myint Kyaw says. Its freemium model offers a limited letter set, with the rest unlocked for $1.99. Myanmar language numbers, as well as an Android version of the iPad app, are on the way.
“For the Phew apps user, we want to say this is just the beginning. We want to keep iterating and making apps stand out from the Myanmar apps market,” Myo Myint Kyaw says. “I don’t even want to call it version one.” Revo Tech is also prepping to move into the Myanmar music industry with an app.
The company is owned half by Myo Myint Kyaw and half by his CTO, Nay Htet Aung. Myo Myint Kyaw says Revo Tech is on the hunt for funding. It will seek angel investors and their ilk through networking with Ideabox, the Ooredoo offshoot.
For now Revo Tech has blank pages to fill in a budding industry, where the tech community is filling out as well. “I even hang out with a lot of my rival founders,” Myo Myint Kyaw says. “You don’t compete with each other, instead we should be collaborating [with] each other for the new Myanmar.”
Source: MYANMAR TIMES