Navin DanapalDirector of SE Asia


Navin Danapal

Director of SE Asia

Navin engages with the Asian innovation ecosystem by working with corporates and governments to form platforms to develop the region. His previous roles include senior management of Microsoft development audience, SPH Editor, and in IDG. He studied Communication Design (Information Development) and then founded a startup during the 1997 Asian financial crisis to take advantage of businesses seeking solutions when MNCs pulled out of the country.

His Microsoft initiatives include organizing Malaysia’s largest hackathon that entered the Malaysian Book of Records and Malaysian Tourism Ministry hackathon for Visit Malaysia Year with Telekom Malaysia – the national telco – that led to Microsoft US MoU for technology transfer. He advised Telenor’s hackathon, and when he left Microsoft, advised AirAsia and Malaysia Airlines on their aerospace hackathons.

While in Microsoft, his team also organised the first Microsoft //build/ outside of US as Malaysia’s largest developer conference, keynoted by the Prime Minister’s department, and was the launchpad of the national Big Data initiative.

During the Malaysian Communications Ministry ASEAN conference, under Microsoft, he worked with AT&T to address the US Ambassador to Malaysia on development opportunities. He also worked with MaGIC (Malaysian Government startup agency) – launched by President Obama & Malaysian Prime Minister – to sponsor ASEAN startups Microsoft software, which was the largest contribution.

After Microsoft, he co-organised Asia’s first VR hackathon in Beijing with China Government’s VR initiative, partnering with Coke and HTC Vive.

He is a mentor for numerous bodies including Naisa Global US (DC) which grooms Asian American leaders, NASA global space hackathon, and MaGIC ASEAN program. He’s also an adjunct faculty of Laureate universities. He speaks at conferences on FinTech to Space Economy (with UK Space Agency and NASA) and he’s an advisor to Malaysian Government.

He has been awarded Microsoft Most Valuable Professional for industry tech contribution and his university has awarded him Top 10 Creative Achievers for expanding the horizon of global businesses.

Favourite quote: ”If your dreams don’t scare you, they’re too small.” –Richard Branson