April 2023 is a slow month with the release of two new episodes focusing on digital skills study by Gallup and Amazon Web Services and how to build a great web3 game in the Asia Pacific. This month, we also recommended the key reports in the crypto and web3 space from the US that have indicated that Asia is starting to lead the activity for blockchain developments with declining US market share in developer activity, against the backdrop of lack of clarity in digital assets legislation in the US and rise of crypto hubs in Asia from Hong Kong to Dubai.
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Building a Tech-Savvy Workforce in the Asia Pacific & AWS Training & Certification in the Asia Pacific with Emmanuel Pillai
- The 5 key takeaways from "the AWS Digital Pacific Digital Skills Study: the economic benefits of building a tech-savvy workforce" by Gallup and Amazon Web Services: 1/ Advanced digital workers earn 65% more than non-digital workers, adding nearly $1 trillion to Asia Pacific’s annual GDP; 2/ Workers who use advanced digital skills feel more satisfied and secure in their jobs with 79% of workers who use advanced digital skills express high job satisfaction, compared to 46% of workers who only use basic digital skills, 3/ Employers that rely heavily on advanced digital skills, digital technology, and cloud technology report higher levels of revenue, growth, and innovation. APAC organizations that employ workers with advanced digital skills report annual revenues that are 150% higher than those that employ workers with only basic digital skills. 4/ 7 out of 10 employers in Asia Pacific countries face digital hiring challenges, in part due to strict bachelor’s degree requirements. Over 76% of APAC employers have job openings that require digital skills, and most of these organizations (72%) report difficulties in filling these positions. 25% of employers say it is “a significant challenge” to hire workers with the digital skills they need. 5/ Two-thirds of organizations in the region say they are likely to adopt at least one emerging technology: AI, web3/crypto, AR/VR and 5G.
The Web3 Gaming Renaissance in the Asia Pacific with Serkan Toto
- Serkan disseminated the key trends of web3 gaming in the Asia Pacific. The major game companies in the Asia Pacific, for example, Sony and Nintendo in Japan and Maple Story in Korea are developing their web3 games with blockchain and crypto elements. Unlike the US counterparts who are spending their time debating whether gaming is a leisure activity or a play & earn activity, the Asia gaming companies take a pragmatic approach to web3 and crypto gaming.
- Animoca Brands in Hong Kong is still leading the charge for web3 and crypto games development in the world. Asia has pioneered key innovations in blockchain gaming. Yield Guild Games pioneered the go-to-market strategy and customer acquisition strategy for web3 gaming with the introduction of guilds, while Axie Infinity introduced the concept of play to earn or play and earn. These companies may have hit a roadblock in 2022 but they are still continuously innovating with Sky Mavis making a major announcement of bringing 4 games to the Ronin chain which is EVM-compatible.
- Serkan explained the elements of what makes a great web3 game and it is the next paradigm to watch on the developments of gaming in the Asia Pacific.
We want to zoom into the declining activity of web3 development in the United States and the rising activity in the same sector where the Asia Pacific (excluding China) is the key leading indicator. There is no one major factor that we can point to. A few things happened after the FTX collapse, the key financial hubs such as London, Dubai, Singapore and Hong Kong are still opening up to crypto and web3 markets with legislation specific to digital assets management with the US receding backwards with a divided US Congress on crypto matters. There is a furore of web3 and crypto events in Hong Kong at the end of March 2023 period.
- State of Crypto Report 2023 by Andreessen Horowitz aka a16z crypto. If you have listened to recent podcasts such as web3 with a16z crypto and Bankless, the a16z team has indicated that the Asia Pacific is leading the activity. As a web3 investor, I have seen more deals specific in the infrastructure, crypto cybersecurity, gaming and NFT segments in Asia as compared to the US and Europe. However, the investment climate has tilted towards AI startups on the venture capital front.
- Developer Report in Web3 and Crypto from Electric Capital. Supporting the thesis that Asia is leading the activity in web3 and blockchain, one key indicator is the US is losing its lead for blockchain developers by 2% market share per year over the past 5 years. The lack of clarity and the enforcement of the SEC did not help matters in the US. It did not help when the SEC Chairman did not want to define whether the ether is a security or a commodity in the US. Similar to the crypto bear market in the 2018-2019 period, the activity has come from the rest of the world other than the US.
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