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Singapore IT industry raises funds to support startups

Veronica C. Silva | July 4, 2012
S$1 million will be available to most 'investible' Singapore startups.

The Singapore infocomm industry has announced a million-dollar Singapore fund to encourage startups to innovate.

Singapore infocomm Technology Federation (SiTF), Singapore's infocomm industry association, recently announced the S$1 Million Challenge Award through the 123JumpStart, an initiative of SiTF that provides one-stop shop for startup companies.

The S$1 million (US$791,665) investment challenge is one of the key initiatives of SiTF's  123JumpStart platform, said Roger Yuen, chairman, 123JumpStart and councillor, SiTF.

The challenge "will offer a stage for startups to connect with investors and to bring public awareness to their innovative ideas. 123JumpStart is about endorsing the ambition of the start-ups and supporting them with financial expertise and mentorship to help them realise their dreams in this brave new world of young entrepreneurship," Yuen added.

The investment challenge seeks to nurture the next generation of entrepreneurs, said Eddie Chau, chairman, SiTF, adding that the SiTF believes in Singapore's innovation.

The funds will be available to startups who are most worthy of investment funds. Startups interested in the funding are urged to submit innovative projects by end-July 2012. SiTF said the investment challenge will run for three years and open to any Singapore startup company with less than five years in operations. Startups can submit business proposals in the area of Cloud Solutions, Digital Media, Emerging Media and Mobile Applications.

SiTF Awards

Proposals are to be submitted through the SiTF Awards, which gives opportunities to local enterprises, multinational corporations and institutions to showcase their innovative products and services.

Startups can avail themselves of the S$1 million fund and can be eligible to the SiTF Awards. The Awards will accept nominations in 10 categories, namely: Cloud Solutions, Digital Media, E-Government, Emerging Technology, General Applications, Interactive Ideas, Infocomm Productivity, Mobile Applications, Startup and Student. Submissions through SiTF Awards are on 30 June 2012.

Startups who prefer not to join the SiTF Awards are urged to submit their proposals to the SiTF by 31 July 2012. Winners will be announced on 30 August 2012.

"The idea of providing the challenge is to create excitement in the industry; hopefully this will inspire more local innovations to come forward. Companies which submit their innovations for SiTF Awards not only stand to win the coveted award but also the funding that could possibly accelerate the company's success," said  Shirley Wong, chairman, SiTF Awards and managing partner, TNF Ventures, which is one of the lead supporters of the million-dollar challenge.

Aside from the SiTF and TNF Ventures, the investment challenge is also supported by the National Research Foundation (NRF), Ruvento Ventures and the Interactive Digital Media Programme Office (IDMPO) hosted by the Media Development Authority (MDA).

Michael Yap, executive director, IDMPO, said the investment challenge is an opportunity for IDM innovators for their ideas to be supported from incubation to commercialisation.


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