EMC Alumni Feature: Matt Viner
Prior to Emerging Markets Consulting (EMC), Matt Viner worked with First Mile, a clean-tech logistics startup as a Business Analyst. He was interested in International Development especially in the Southeast Asian region. Matt found himself in Cambodia by chance when other plans fell through, and someone suggested he head to Phnom Penh. The advice was, “Go to Phnom Penh. Things are bustling there, and you’ll land on your feet.”
Matt joined EMC as a Consultant and was promoted to Regional Business Development Manager. In EMC, he learnt how to conduct research in an emerging market where available data is scarce. He stated, “In frontier and emerging markets you must think harder and dig deeper. This is experience you can’t really get until you’ve been through it.” Small, fast-growing economies like Cambodia offer a much steeper learning curve than larger, developed economies like the UK or US and a strategy consulting firm like EMC provides many opportunities to take advantage of this.
Matt’s most rewarding project was supporting the establishment of a Myanmar based, tech focused VC. This project contributed to his eventual move into his current role. “I learnt a lot about building and executing projects which is crucial to where I am now,” he said, on his time in EMC.
Highlights of living in Cambodia were the cycling and motorbike trips, boat trips to the island, and according to Matt, “Phnom Penh’s surprisingly on-point international cuisine scene”. Besides the lifelong friends he made in EMC, he enjoyed the camaraderie with like-minded people from all over the world, who were starting out their careers in a developing country. He also pointed out the many extra-curricular activities one can get involved in the lively city of Phnom Penh. Amongst those, Matt mentored local startups in his free time.
Today, Matt manages Emerging Markets Entrepreneurs (EME) – the VC he helped establish in Myanmar, while with EMC. EME supports early-stage tech startups with growth capital and tailored incubation services. Matt also serves as a director of the Myanmar Private Equity & Venture Capital Association (MPEVCA). According to Matt his move to Myanmar came in no small part due to the networks he formed during his career at EMC.