Business Feature Story

SXSW, the power of creative economy

By Daniella Flanagan

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HOUSTON, TX – On March 14, the Consulate General of the Republic of Indonesia here in cooperation with Indonesian-American Chamber of Commerce of Southeastern Central USA and The Indonesian Agency for Creative Economy held an interactive and fun South by South West panel of Indonesian startup business.

The power of Indonesian creative economy

I was invited to attend this three-hour presentation, discussion, and business matching under the header “The Power of Indonesian Creative Economy.”

The air was punctuated by the smell of Indonesian delicacies and the taste of investment opportunities with some of Indonesia’s rising business stars – Seruni Audio, Mycotech,, Squline, Saft7Robotics, Minikino, Vestifarm.

The March 9 to 18, 2018 SXSW event held at the Austin Convention Center was an opportunity to meet Indonesian start-up companies in the creative economy industry who participated. This time there are seven Indonesian start up companies who joined the event – Seruniaudio,, Mycotech, Saft7robotics, Squline, Vestifarm, Minikino & Telkomsel NextDev.

It seems to me that the global impact of SXSW on the startup community is undeniable.

What is SXSW?

It is definitely more than just free food, drinks, and band showcases. What began as a regional showcase of musical talent over 30 years ago is now a globally renowned event during which tech professionals, recording artists and filmmakers, entrepreneurs, and other creatives converge for more than a week in downtown Austin, Texas.

The SXSW, which was free and open to the public, attracts the world’s leading creative professionals to Austin for an unparalleled event that includes a conference, trade shows, and festivals.

For the past 30 years, SXSW has successfully helped creative people achieve their goals while catapulting Austin onto the world stage each March by transforming the city into a global mecca for creative professionals.

SXSW is perhaps the best example how American cities and states can change in a way that reflects the best of who we are as members of the local and global communities.

Despite the evolution of the event, SXSW maintains its focus on helping provide a launchpad for innovative ideas—whether it is in music, film or technology.

I discovered that seemingly disparate tracks—tech, social impact, and art—can come together in surprising ways to strengthen and propel each other forward – globally.

SXSW is surely a global launchpad.

In that corner of Texas that was Indonesia, I saw emerging technologies bring together artists, inventors, politicians, philanthropists, and thought leaders from all over Asia and the United States.

In 2016 alone, SXSW—and by extension, Austin, Texas—achieved over 110 billion broadcast, print, and online impressions.

The ubiquity of SXSW media coverage is unique and tremendously valuable to ASEAN countries like the Philippines and Indonesia.

The annual SXSW continues to break down boundaries and step boldly and confidently into the unknown. If you as an entrepreneur have never attended, make this one of your MOST DO list in life. Partnerships are critical to make small entrepreneurs and startups successes.

Nonprofits, foundations, and governments must work deliberately with private companies and budding entrepreneurs to create and implement growth solutions for businesses and development for their nations.


The creative, ambitious, and sometimes unorthodox thinking that SXSW showcases is the same kind of thinking needed to transform lives with global innovation and funding of entrepreneurs.

Whether it be in Austin, Manila, Jakarta, Nairobi, Seattle, or Accra; we should always be looking for fresh ways to develop, integrate, and scale innovation to support thriving, healthy, and self-reliant communities in our respective nations.

Maraming Salamat Po to the Consulate General of the Republic of Indonesia in Houston, the Indonesian-American Chamber of Commerce of Southeastern Central USA (IACC- SCU) and The Indonesian Agency for Creative Economy for the invitation.

Special thanks to Karbela Rachman, Ira Damayanti and Paul Wahyudin for your coordination efforts for that amazing night.

Consulate Link:
Indonesian Chamber Link:
Media listing source:
Daniella Flanagan
Dani, as Daniella is known among her friends, is an actress, production assistant, producer, set designer, casting director, host, and reporter. She is a huge fan of beignet, crawfish, catfish, palabok, pancit, and the great States of Texas and California. Her background is in International Business and TV/Film production.

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