Goh Peng Ooi
Malaysia’s first tech billionaire, Goh grew up in a Penang kampong and later earned a scholarship to study at the University of Tokyo. While heading the Asia banking solutions group at IBM, Goh saw an opportunity to improve existing IT systems in the banking industry. In 1989, he quit his job to launch Silverlake. Today, it provides financial software to 40 percent of Southeast Asia’s banks and is Malaysia’s top banking software provider. Science and mathematics remain close to Goh’s heart — the 60-year-old contributes to academic and industrial initiatives, and is researching mobile phone technology.