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Business

First Pacific-PLDT startup proj expands to other SEA countries

Lawrence Agcaoili - The Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines - IdeaSpace Foundation Inc., a non-profit organization backed by First Pacific Co. Ltd of Hong Kong and the PLDT Group, has expanded its startup competition by seeking entries from other Southeast Asian countries.

Earl Martin Valencia, president of IdeaSpace, said in a press conference that the IdeaSpace Startup Competition expanded outside the Philippines to attract inspired and marketable startup ideas from neighboring Southeast Asian countries.

Valencia said the 2014 Startup Competition that would run until Jan. 15 was expanded as the prominence and relevance of the Southeast Asian region in the global startup scene becomes more crucial than ever.

“Whenever we tell the IdeaSpace story to investors and venture capitalists in developed countries, they are always curious about the kind of innovation and unique startup ideas that come out of the emerging markets such as the Philippines and Southeast Asia,” he said.

He pointed out that opening the competition to early-stage startups from around the region would bring in the kind of diversity in the kinds of science and technology innovations that can positively impact the lives of billions of people living in emerging markets like Southeast Asia.

 â€œSoutheast Asia as a market is interesting for companies worldwide as we can see from the number of investors flocking the region, solidifying our belief that the Philippines and neighboring countries have a huge potential in making a significant dent in the global startup scene,” Valencia said.

He said 10 of the winners for the best innovative startup ideas would come from the Philippines while five would come from other Southeast Asian countries.

Under the IdeaSpace program, the winners for 2014 would receive initial support of more than P1 million worth of funding, services and training under a rigorous six-month business incubation and acceleration program.

In the incubation phase of the program, the top 20 finalists would undergo a three-day bootcamp followed by a rigorous six-week program to help enhance their entrepreneurial, business and marketing skills, aside from building team dynamics. During this phase, the chosen teams would receive a P50,000 grant to be used for prototype development, presentation materials and other initial operating expenses.

After incubation, the teams will be required to present their prototype and business model before a high-level board of judges.  Up to 10 startups would then be chosen for the next phase of the program.

During acceleration, the teams would receive an outright cash investment from IdeaSpace of P500,000 and a separate grant worth at least another P500,000 inclusive of business management classes, marketing and financial consulting, intellectual property consulting and incorporation and business registration costs, among others.

After graduating from the acceleration period, IdeaSpace would evaluate and deliberate whether to give additional investments of up to P5 million to graduating startups that deserve increased funding.

Ideaspace has invested in 16 companies, including maker of water purification machine ARMTech, joints manufacturer Arthrologic, PortfolioMNL, windmill designer WeGen, SMS based queing system developer Timefree, provincial bus reservation system provider Pinoy Travel, theKard, DateCola, PGRS, Tech4Health, Gen8.ph, Tudlo, PageSnapp, SMS.AWT, OrangeApps, and iRace.ph.

 

EARL MARTIN VALENCIA

FIRST PACIFIC CO

FOUNDATION INC

IDEASPACE

LTD OF HONG KONG

PHILIPPINES AND SOUTHEAST ASIA

PINOY TRAVEL

SOUTHEAST ASIA

SOUTHEAST ASIAN

STARTUP

STARTUP COMPETITION

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