Launch of Google Business Group Kota Kinabalu

I was pretty excited to hear about the initiative to have a Google Business Group (GBG) in Kota Kinabalu, when the idea was brought up by Daniel Doughty during our chat last November (he’s also the brains behind the Borneo Colour events). Therefore I made a point not to miss the first meetup on 30th January (which I almost did) even if I have to come in an hour and a half later than the scheduled 6.00 pm. I only missed dinner and the opening speech, and was just in time for the sessions.

Mohd Hadi Shafie Othman, Outreach Program Manager, Google SEA

Mohd. Hadi Shafie Othman, the Outreach Program Manager for Google Southeast Asia, started off the meet up explaining how Google Business Group came about as a community effort, and how Google fits into the effort and activities.

GBG Malaysia Country Champion and Founder, Marcus Foon

This was followed by a session about GBG Malaysia by the Country Champion and Founder, Marcus Foon. Yes, he insisted that his title was not made up by him, but by Google itself. Of course… *smirks*. We get to see some really nice photos of other GBG chapter members and the activities that have been organised since GBG Malaysia was founded slightly more than a year ago.

Wayne Chan, GBG Petaling Jaya ManagerIt was when Wayne Chan, GBG Petaling Jaya Manager, mentioned about Google Developer Group (GDG), that my interest perked. With a little Google-fu, I found that there have been some community-organised events to connect Malaysia’s local developers to Google developer advocates and engineers, known as the GDG DevFest (never heard of it). Nowadays, focus is more towards business owners and content creators, the driving force behind our economic system, and so g|Malaysia was born (never heard of this, either, but note Wayne’s dark blue shirt commemorating the event).

All in all, a good turnout and a good start to GBG KK. I’m looking forward to seeing what programmes they have lined up, and maybe share my experience in Google technology for personal and professional use in one of the sessions.

Attendees of the inaugural GBG KK meetup on 30 Jan 2013

What inaugural GBG meet up is complete without a group photo? I (rightmost, standing) did a different Circle pose compared to the rest of the +1 poses. Just ’cause. By the way, add me to your Circle, why don’t you?

Official press release of GBG KK below:-

31st January 2013 marks the launch and inaugural meet up of Google Business Group Malaysia, Kota Kinabalu Chapter. Google Business Group (GBG) is a community of business professionals, entrepreneurs and also anyone who are interested in web technologies supported and recognised by Google. This community is a great way to connect, learn and share ideas to how we can use the latest web technologies to achieve online business success.

GBG Chapters has already been successfully established in Kuala Lumpur, Petaling Jaya and Johor Bahru and now here in Kota Kinabalu, Sabah. The theme for the inaugural GBG Kota Kinabalu meet up is “Learning Web Technologies for Business Success.” The launching of GBG Kota Kinabalu will be officiated by YB Datuk Dr Yee Moh Chai, Deputy Chief Minister and Minister of Resource Development and IT. A few guest speakers from other GBG Chapter in Malaysia will attend the event and share knowledge about using Google technology and applications for businesses.

GBG KK will hold a free community driven initiative meet up every month to share ideas among members of the community to further empower them with the latest technology knowledge, business know-how, strategy and business opportunity. For more information and updates, please visit GBG Kota Kinabalu official website at http://gbgmalaysia.org/kotakinabalu or you can contact Daniel Doughty – daniel(at) gbgmalaysiadot org and Simon Pang – simon @gbgmalaysia dot org.

(Updated 03/02/2013) I posted a small photo album of this event in Facebook and there are more photos in the GBG Kota Kinabalu Google Plus page. On top of that, our GBG comrades from Gaza made a spiffy GBG KK video introduction.

Kudos to Simon Pang and Daniel, managers for GBG KK for making this group happen, and the invited speakers for sharing what would hopefully be seeds of motivation for driving more KK businesses to the online forefront through knowledge exchange.