START-UPS can expect more matchmaking opportunities with global investors as Enterprise Singapore works with the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) to catalyse funding.
One way that this is being done is through highly curated deal-making sessions. The first of such sessions kicked off on Friday as part of the global launch for Slingshot 2019, an international start-up pitching competition organised by Enterprise Singapore. More than 100 start-ups networked with close to 50 investors, corporate funds and venture capitalists, said the agency.
The collaboration with MAS is part of a wider strategy by Enterprise Singapore to strengthen the local start-up ecosystem by adopting a market-led approach, bringing together academia, government and the private sector to create solutions that address market needs in Singapore and the region.
This comes as Asia is predicted by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) to account for more than half of global gross domestic product (GDP) by 2050.
Edwin Chow, assistant CEO of Enterprise Singapore, said that Enterprise Singapore will deepen its engagement with local and overseas partners to enable start-ups to scale more quickly.
He added: “Targeted platforms for start-ups to connect with investors and customers serve as valuable opportunities for start-ups to access resources such as financing, and opens doors to co-innovation with leading corporates. Moving forward, we will look at initiatives related to growing talent and later-stage financing to build a more robust ecosystem.”
Other moves announced on Friday build on existing initiatives. For instance, 17 new accredited mentor partners will be added to the Startup SG Founder programme to provide more mentorship and start-up capital to first-time entrepreneurs. This will bring the total number of mentors to 45, which is expected to groom close to 200 start-ups in the coming year.
The new mentors include talent incubator Antler, the Singapore University of Social Sciences (SUSS), and South-east Asia’s largest medical device business, Advanced MedTech.
Enterprise Singapore is also working with the Economic Development Board to add at least four more cities to the Global Innovation Alliance (GIA) network this year. The GIA is a network of local and overseas partners in major innovation hubs.
In addition, Enterprise Singapore has been partnering various government agencies since 2017 to launch calls for proposals from start-ups to tackle challenges across urban solutions, trade, logistics and construction. A total of 24 calls for proposals are in the pipeline for 2019.