(P1) It took Singapore less than 50 years to become an international HUB for finance due to its location, uncorrupt government, and support of business.

(P2) More recently however, Singapore has become a critical bridge between Asia-Pacific businesses and Silicon Valley.

(P3) “If [Singapore] was a company, it would be one of the most remarkable entrepreneurial successes in recent history,” said Danny Tan, the CEO of HipVan. “I think the basic TENETS of entrepreneurship such as innovation and hard work have always been part of the Singapore DNA.”

(P4) Singapore was recently ranked as the 10th best place to start a company, and has a growing relationship with Silicon Valley, which was ranked number one spot. Singapore has become a center for companies and investors from Silicon Valley to help each other with financing and introductions to key players throughout the Asia-Pacific region.

(P5) “Companies want new customers and consumers want new, innovative products,” says Alex Gold, co-Founder of Traction, a Silicon Valley-based marketing tech company which chose Singapore as its first area for international expansion. “Our investors in Singapore have been amazing at introducing us to people and markets in Southeast Asia. They understand how startups do business.”

(P6) Because it is home to the Asian-Pacific HEADQUARTERS of many of the world’s largest corporations, Singapore is an entry port for American entrepreneurs looking to expand throughout Southeast Asia. ON TOP OF this, because business in Singapore is done in English, there’s no LANGUAGE BARRIER for American business owners to OVERCOME.

(P7) “Singapore is an awesome place to grow a business as an entrepreneur from North America,” said Lisa Crosswhite, founder of e-commerce fashion site Gnossem, based in the CITY-STATE. “The Singaporean way of life is one of achieving growth, developing, and MAINTAINING INTEGRITY, which makes for a FLOURISHING of entrepreneurialism.”

(P8) Personal connections are critical to any THRIVING entrepreneurial ecosystem. Singapore’s relatively small size of 5.5 million residents and incredibly educated workforce all make it attractive to people looking to do business in Asia.

WORDS: 336



If you found the passage difficult to read or had problems understanding specific words or idiomatic expressions, please discuss them with your tutor. The following discussion questions should be answered in your own words and with your own arguments.

  1. Briefly summarize the content of the article in your own words.
  2. Which countries do you think are more corrupt, and which do you think are less corrupt?
  3. Singapore is a city that is also a country (a “city-state”). Are there any other cities that could be successful independent countries?
  4. Have strong personal connections helped your business career?
  5. Are technology companies the strongest businesses today, or is that just HYPE?


What do the following expressions mean? Practice using each expression in a sentence; extra points if you can use it in conversation.

  • On top of
  • Language barrier
  • City-state

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