The report, launched by HSBC and KPMG, cited start-up data platform Tracxn as showing that Vietnam was home to just 1,600 start-ups at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, but that total has jumped to more than 3,000 now, including four unicorns.
Driving the country’s digital economy are a large and young population willing to test and adopt new technology consumer services, supportive government policies, and a surge in overseas funding.
“Vietnam has emerged as a hub for start-ups, closely competing with the likes of Indonesia and Singapore,” said Tim Evans, CEO of HSBC Vietnam.
While e-commerce accounts for less than 5% of all retail sales in Vietnam, its value rose by more than half in 2021.
Luke Treolar, head of strategy at KPMG Vietnam, said similar high growth rates can be expected for the next several years, adding if that happens, the country will have Southeast Asia’s second biggest digital economy, behind Indonesia, by the end of the decade.