Skip to main content


Connecting Innovators and Startup Investors Around the World

Member Login
Silicon Dragon (McGraw-Hill, 2008)
Written and researched by Rebecca A. Fannin, this influential book first chronicled the rise of China's Silicon Valley through exclusive interviews with the founders of breakthrough Chinese startups such as Alibaba and Baidu  

Publishers Weekly

In her brisk and flattering analysis of China's charge into the high-tech market, Fannin spotlights 12 Eastern technopreneurs who are giving Silicon Valley mainstays a run for their money. Identifying her profile subjects the next Thomas Edison or the next Rupert Murdoch, and their companies as MySpace China and the like, the former Red Herring news editor supports her observational thesis with data and anecdotes from a variety of Western and Eastern CEOs, professors and financial analysts. Drawing parallels between the Middle Kingdom's growth and the height of the dot-com bubble, Fannin also takes care to note that most of her China-born sea turtles' were educated in the West, but returned to their homeland to take advantage of growing markets there. If anything, her writing overly praises Chinese entrepreneurships' reach in the world, choosing to gloss over negative statistics and paying controversial social issues—such as censorship of China's Internet sites—mere lip service. Overall, Fannin is best at tracing her subject's mostly humble beginnings through Mao's Cultural Revolution to the self-made Internet era as the tech world searches for the next Bill Gates. Given the sheer number of Chinese expected to be alive in the next decade, new media moguls (and profitable IPOs) are inevitable. 

The Wall Street Journal

“Rebecca Fannin recently crisscrossed China to gauge its digital prospects and the dynamism of its computer-based economy. As she reports in “Silicon Dragon, she spotted a clutch of up-and-coming entrepreneurs and heard echoes of Redwood Drive in places like Beijing’s Zhongguancun high-tech district. And little wonder. China’s Steve Jobs wannabes are desperately trying to make up for lost time.”


Translated editions


                              Taiwan                                     Mainland China                         India






 Startup Asia (John Wiley & Sons, 2011)
Written and researched by Rebecca A. Fannin, Startup Asia is the source for venture investors and entrepreneurs 
who want to tap the Startup Asia trend in China, India and the region's frontier markets.         
        BUY THE BOOK                                                     

 “Rebecca Fannin has established herself as the preeminent expert on Asia’s emerging innovation economies. There is no better guide to understanding the countries and companies that are commercializing the disruptive technologies and ideas of the future.”

Jason Pontin, Editor in Chief and Publisher, Technology Review   

“Rebecca Fannin, who caught the early waves of the Chinese Internet boom with her book Silicon Dragon, shows why we now need to be paying attention to VIC (Vietnam, India and China) in her forward-looking book Startup Asia. With diligent on-the-ground reporting and hard-won access, Fannin follows the money — the smart money of VCs who made money on both the U.S. and China Internet booms — to see where we should be placing our next bets in the world of technology.” Gady Epstein, Correspondent, The Economist


Startup Asia starts out with a bang and picks up steam from there. Rebecca Fannin has done her homework. The force of Asian innovation and market presence will be with us forever. You’ll be well served by reading this excellent work.”

Dick Kramlich, Chairman & Co-Founder, NEA


“Startup Asia should be on the Kindle shelf for every B school course on Asia or entrepreneurship.”

Ron Schramm, Professor, Columbia Business School


"Startup Asia is a must read! The shift of entrepreneurial activity to Asia is dramatically changing investment opportunities. No one has done more field research or has more thoughtful analysis and insights on this dramatic change than Rebecca Fannin!”
Patrick J. McGovern,Founder and Chairman, International Data Group


"From tech parks in India to half-constructed offices in Ho Chi Minh City, Startup Asia is a splendidly woven narrative of leading entrepreneurs and venture capitalists who are shaping the future that is being invented in Asia and envied around the globe.”

Tony Nash, Global Director, Custom Research, Economist Intelligence Unit"


Rebecca Fannin is quickly establishing herself as the ultimate expert on Asia and its countless budding entrepreneurs. Fannin profiles up and comers in China, India, and Vietnam, delves into the hottest market sectors, and details strategies for startup success. A must-read about Asia’s burgeoning startups.”

Wiliam H. Draper III, General Partner, Draper Richards and Draper International, and author, The Startup Game"


"With the Pacific Century well underway, Startup Asia is required reading for anyone serious about the next wave of technology entrepreneurship. Rebecca Fannin elegantly weaves impressive facts, stunning anecdotes and insightful visions of the future to paint a highly engaging portrait of this amazing region and its new class of leaders. She has written another gem!David Lam, Managing Director, WI Harper Group and Board President, Asia America MultiTechnology Association "Rebecca Fannin manages to take a still picture of a scenario almost too fast moving to photograph. Dip into her book on entrepreneurial a and adventure will grab you by the throat.” Peter Rupert Lighte, Banker and Sinologist                       

"Once again, the author of Silicon Dragon has written a book based on original research and first hand insight. Startup Asia offers a unique overview of promising start-ups from Asia’s emerging entrepreneurs. She includes personal profiles of the individuals behind each venture, which makes the book an enjoyable read and gives it a “girl-next-door” perspective. Her detailed snapshot of Asian innovation amply demonstrates why the world’s most dynamic continent will continue its ascent in the global economy.”

Dan Schwartz, Chairman Emeritus, AVCJ, and author, The Future of Finance


While there are books galore about the innovation model in the West, rarely books are written on  what's happening about innovation in Asia. Rebecca offers a fascinating view of how innovation is developing in the world's fastest growing region. Startup Asia is highly recommended for business leaders, policy makers, students and entrepreneurs alike.”

Stanley Kwong, Managing Director/Professor, Greater China Programs, School of Management, University of San Francisco 


“This is a critical time for making the right decision in a very complex and at times baffling Asian market. Rebecca’s ability to get to the real players in the market and get them to talk about what they are really thinking and planning is fascinating. The stories and strategies are insightful and at times enlightening. Startup Asia should be on the reading list of everyone who wants to understand Asian thinking and investing. I believe this will be a classic in its time, too, like her previous book, Silicon Dragon.”

Egidio Zarrella, Clients and Innovation Partner in Charge, KPMG China                                                                              


See Book Tour Photos


"There have been many attempts to replicate Silicon Valley's successes and to date all other regions have failed to challenge the Valley's dominance. Startup Asia makes a compelling case that for the first time in venture capital history, a region has the potential to challenge the Valley's dominance.”

Kevin Fong, Special Advisor, GSR Ventures


“Rebecca Fannin’s newest book, Startup Asia, makes an important contribution to the discussion of China’s rise and deepens our understanding of how and why. Startup Asia helps us formulate our own views of what the world will look like in the coming years. So, get ready:the probability that your son or daughter, or possibly you yourself, will be spending time in Asia, perhaps learning Chinese, is higher than ever before.Asia’s rise, and China’s with it, cannot be ignored.

This book helps us understand and evaluate what it all means for us in the 21st century.”

Ken Wilcox, Chairman, Silicon Valley Bank                                                                                           Author & Forbes bureau chief Eric Savitz


5.0 out of 5 starsRequired reading for anyone involved in innovation, U.S. competitiveness or U.S.-Asian relations, November 29, 2011
Rebecca Fannin has spent more time on the ground with enterpreneurs and venture capitalists in Asia than any other journalist of any nationality. She lays on detail after detail about how the best and brightest young minds are flowing into high-tech start-ups, some of them coming from the United States. She also analyzes how America's top venture capital firms are piling money into these start-ups in China, Vietnam, India and elsewhere.

So far, these companies are largely imitating the work done by Google, Facebook, Twitter, eBay and the like, but they are engaged in micro-innovation to adapt those ideas to their markets. They also are advancing in the realms of smart energy and pharmaceuticals.

When will these start-ups come up with ideas that go global and penetrate the more advanced markets? It won't happen right away, Fannin says, but it clearly could happen within five to 10 years. These societies don't have the intellectual property protection that the United States enjoys; their own financial systems have not yet learned how to allocate capital to the best ideas; and they face other challenges, whether infrastructure or heavy handed governments.

But Fannin believes it's just a question of time before the Asians put all the pieces together to create genuine world-changing innovation. It's time that America recognizes this--and responds.
William J. Holstein, author, "The Next American Economy: Blueprint For a Real Recovery."
5.0 out of 5 starsMust Read for anyone in high tech
February 17, 2012
"Rebecca Fannin has done a remarkable job of interviewing and reporting on dozens of entrepreneurs. What a great and comprehensive review of high tech startups in Vietnam, India and China. This is a must-read if you are in the high tech or VC industry. The innovation happening across Asia is amazing. "
Rosemary Coates, author, "42 Rules for Sourcing and Manufacturing in China