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An Interview With Gary Ng, Innovator And Entrepreneur

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Gary Ng has been in the business of investing for well over a decade. After finding success in the telecommunications industry at a young age, he began investing in vertically integrated contract manufacturing firms that he eventually sold.

Today, Gary Ng continues to focus on entrepreneurship and building businesses under the philosophy “look for problems, innovate and sell.”

Q: Gary, what drove you to become an entrepreneur at such a young age? Was there a pivotal moment?

Gary Ng: When I realized that I would be “pigeon-holed” in my engineering field – that was when I decided I wanted to be an entrepreneur. I’ve always wanted challenges and being a businessman gave me the opportunity to seek out problems and create creative solutions – but in a variety of environments.

Q: You have said: “without chaos, an entrepreneur never gets the chance to shine.” Explain what you mean by this statement.

Gary Ng: I read a lot of history and one consistent, recurring theme is that in moments of monumental societal or technology disruption and change, new heroes emerge to challenge the old guard. From Caesar, to Napoleon, to Steve Jobs and Elon Musk, they all seized the moment of their time and challenged the previous normal.

Q: Are there any tech developments that have piqued your interest recently?

Gary Ng: Bitcoin and cryptocurrency are here to stay. I think as consumers and spenders begin to realize that their money is not as good of a store of value as previously thought, people in general will begin to look for alternatives that cannot be debased as easily as dollars or fiat money in general.

I think with the COVID stimulus a lot of people are asking why it’s so easy for central banks around the world to manipulate their own bond markets and for governments to spend with relative impunity. For example in the US, after over $3 trillion in stimulus, the 10 and 30 year bond market interest rate actually ticked lower. It is very counterintuitive.

It’s my opinion that this is nothing less than what the early Roman emperors did by debasing their silver coins. Probably in the first few years people didn’t notice, but after time, people realized there was less and less precious metal in those coins. Same with our fiat money today – there will be less “full faith and credit” of the American people; but, just a whole lot of debt that will essentially never be repaid (it is already assumed by central bankers that it will simply be inflated away – another way to say the buying power of that money will be reduced significiantly).

Q: You buy a business, restructure it and then sell it. Can you explain why this model has been successful for you?

Gary Ng: There is only so much capacity that any person has, and for me, I have a trader’s mentality. Some people like a long term build for their entire careers and sell their business when they retire to golf or go on holiday. That’s just not for me. I have far too many interests that I want to explore and I feel I am capable of hiring people that like the daily building over long term, so I’ll leave it to them. For some reason, there seems to be a stigma in North America about selling your business. I think that’s stupid. I buy low and sell high, or sell high and buy it back lower. As a businessman, a profit is a profit and should be celebrated. I’ve seen so many aging business people hang on to their company until their 70s or 80s only to not have an exit strategy and be stuck.

Q: What is next on the roadmap for you?

Gary Ng: I haven’t deviated from my business strategy in the last 18 years and have no reason to. The formula is simple: Identify a common problem, create a unique solution that only I have, and then sell that solution for a reasonable price. It really is that simple. My value is being a solutions provider.

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