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Guide to Setting Up & Developing a Startup through Malaysia Tech Entrepreneur Program (MTEP)


In recent years, Malaysia has become a hotbed for startups and entrepreneurs worldwide due to its appeal of connecting businesses to a regional market of more than 625 million people, through its prime location in the heart of South East Asia (SEA).


With aims to grow and support the country’s tech startup ecosystem and strengthen Malaysia's position as a global hub for startups and entrepreneurs, the Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC) has introduced the Malaysia Digital Hub (MDH) and Malaysia Tech Entrepreneur Program (MTEP) since 2017.



Malaysia Digital Hub (MDH)


The Malaysia Digital Hub (MDH) is an initiative that supports coworking spaces and its community of startups. MDH is a certification by the Malaysian government conferred to coworking spaces that meet the requirements of high-speed internet connectivity and run programs to support the growth of its communities.


With MDH serving as the touchpoint, MDEC can further support programs like Meet The VCs: Investor Speed Dating  and run Founder’s Grindstone to assist startups to raise funds as well as co-create programs together with large tech partners like Microsoft, Facebook and HP to provide attractive packages for the community.


MDEC also works closely with accelerators such as 1337 Ventures, NEXEA and Seedstars to launch initiatives like hackathons, pitching sessions, design thinking workshops, mentorship, and upskilling programs that are designed to accelerate startup growth.



Malaysia Tech Entrepreneur Programme (MTEP)


The Malaysia Tech Entrepreneur Program (MTEP) is an initiative that aims to attract foreign tech talents and aspiring entrepreneurs (founders & co-founders) from all over the world, and help them set up and develop their startups in Malaysia. 


MTEP is the only program that provides foreign entrepreneurs with a Malaysian work visa before setting up a company. Do take note that it only applies to entrepreneurs who run tech businesses, and there are fees involved during the application process. 






Type of pass(es) and duration of validity

New Entrepreneur

A non-Malaysian individual who may be a self-employed person with an innovative business idea in the digital field/platform and have a strong digital proposition. To qualify, a New Entrepreneur is required to participate by signing up with one of the Malaysia Digital Hubs.

  • Professional Visit Pass (PVP-MTE)

  • Valid for 1 year

Established Entrepreneur

A non-Malaysian individual who may be a self-employed person that has a strong digital proposition and proven track record (more than 3 years established with the latest 2-year financial records).

  • Residence Pass (RP-MTE) 

  • Valid for up to 5 years

Venture Capital

Founder, co-founders or the Malaysian Venture Partner (must have minimum funds of RM10 million and must be registered with Securities Commission Malaysia as

Venture Capital Management Corporations (VCMC)).

  • Residence Pass (RP-MTE)

  • Valid for up to 5 years


For new entrepreneurs in the tech industry, leverage this opportunity where you can get sponsored by MDHs like Found8 once you sign up for a membership. Applicants require an active membership agreement, and the application must be made by the sponsor company in Malaysia to the Immigration Department by submitting the necessary documents.


Image credits: MDEC




MTEP makes getting a Malaysian work visa effortless and attractive, offering great benefits for foreign entrepreneurs to set up and develop their startups in the ASEAN region. 


  • Fast & smooth application process

  • Access to networking & job opportunities

  • Access to business resources

  • No need to have an established company in Malaysia

  • New entrepreneurs can set up a company at any MDH

  • Established entrepreneurs can set up a company anywhere in Malaysia

More benefits listed on the MTEP website.



Found8’s Role in MTEP


Found8 is authorised to be a sponsor for New and Established entrepreneurs seeking to apply for a Malaysian work visa through MTEP. This is an opportunity to allow foreign talents and entrepreneurs into Malaysia through Found8, as successful applicants will be given MTE passes to kickstart their entrepreneurial journey in Malaysia. 


The Found8 community comprises founders and entrepreneurs from various industries – startup accelerators, fintech, HR, SaaS and more. With members from startups, SMEs, small and large corporates, freelancers, and solopreneurs, newcomers have ample chances to connect, network, and learn. Foreign tech entrepreneurs can gain knowledge, receive business support from the Found8 member success team,  and achieve growth and innovation goals.

Found8’s Role as a MDH


Found8 is proud to be an official MDH, providing startups easy access to facilities that will help them scale and find the support necessary to advance into mature growth stages.


As a MDH, Found8 focuses on growing startups, global tech companies, accelerators and talent builders and/or investors. Some facilities offered are high-speed broadband and fibre-optic connectivity, funding opportunities, facilitation with VCs, and membership perks.


The incentives under the Malaysia Digital Hub initiative includes, but is not limited to:

  • Corporate tax exemption for tech startups

  • Access to funding, coaching and mentoring

  • Work passes


Found8 offers a collaborative and vibrant environment for individuals and organizations to grow in, and a workspace that inspires creativity and encourages conversations. 


Contact us at for more information on application processes or FAQs. 

Are you a startup entrepreneur, freelancer, or corporate company looking for support to grow your business?


Found8 is the leading coworking space provider and second home to an extensive community seeking collaboration and growth opportunities. We pride ourselves in delivering high-touch customer service underpinned by care.


To find out more about our coworking spaces or ongoing offers, click here.


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