Huawei Cloud Partners IMDA to Launch the Inaugural Spark Incubator Programme for the Next Generation of Start-ups in Asia
- Targeting early-stage Singapore-based start-ups, this programme aims to support the growth and expansion of start-ups in three key sectors of FinTech, Web3, Metaverse and Enterprise Software
Singapore, 8 November 2022 HUAWEI CLOUD launched the inaugural Spark Incubator programme as part of its partnership with the Infocomm Media Development Authority’s (IMDA) PIXEL Innovation Hub. It targets early-stage Singapore-based start-ups in the pre-seed and seed space from sectors including FinTech, Web3, Metaverse and Software as a Service (SaaS) focused enterprises, aims to support their growth to Series A and expansion in Singapore and ASEAN region.
The programme aims to incubate up to 12 start-ups per cohort for a period of five months and will be run twice over the span of a year. It will provide access to valuable resources and expertise from Huawei and IMDA to further accelerate and grow their business. Start-ups are expected to receive 3rd party financing over S$250k or increase their valuation by at least 20%, or cross S$250k at its annual revenue in the post-program.
After four months of selection from over 80 applications, Leo Jiang, the Chief Digital Officer of Huawei Cloud APAC and the director of the Spark Program, announced the names of the nine start-ups as the first cohort from Nov 2022 to Mar 2023:
- Nervotec: Healthcare analytics as a service to monitor medical grade vital signs
- NFT Circle: Digitalization of physical asset, real estate, and arts as a service
- Heros: Enable athletes to monetise their careers through fan engagements and rewards
- D-Risk: Assists companies to manage credit risk efficiently, accurately, and affordably with AI
- Corgi.AI: A fraud prevention AI plug-in helping businesses better understand and prevent fraud
- Linh.AI: Solution for higher quality and cost-effective data annotation
- Better Data: AI synthetic data provider
- Zapkad: A smart digital business card with comprehensive features worldwide
- Xrator: Forges cyber resilience for all organisations
“We are proud to be collaborating with IMDA on the Spark Incubator Programme, and help local early-stage start-ups commercialise, strengthen their technological capability, and raise funds effectively. Working alongside these most promising start-ups provides co-creation and innovative opportunities where together we can bring greater value to our customers, and upscale Singapore’s economic competitiveness in the long-term. We pledge to continue driving innovation with our start-up’s alumni from Singapore to Asia Pacific and even further, providing a global platform for the most ground-breaking and transformational companies to thrive.” said Mr Foo Fang Yong, Chief Executive Officer of Huawei International.
“Start-ups participating in the Spark Incubator Programme can look forward to dedicated mentorship and access to facilities. The programme brings together Huawei’s expertise and IMDA PIXEL’s facilities in Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality, as well as the network of 12,000 solutions providers under IMDA’s Open Innovation Platform (OIP). These help Singapore start-ups build world-class products and scale across the region,” said Mr Lew Chuen Hong, Chief Executive, IMDA.
Throughout this incubator programme, participants can look to receive HUAWEI CLOUD credits up to US$60,000, up to $75,000 fee-free processing on Stripe, office space at PIXEL, as well as additional mentorship from Huawei and its like-minded industry partners such as IMDA, Stripe, AngelCentral, MasterCard, Monk’s Hill, GSR Ventures, Mycelium Ventures and DocuSign.
With this partnership, IMDA and Huawei will jointly help start-ups build customer-centric products by tapping on advice from PIXEL’s panel of consultants in Design Thinking and UI/UX with Digital Storytelling, along with access to lead corporate demand through IMDA’s Open Innovation Platform (OIP).
Additionally, start-ups can leverage Huawei services to enhance their product capabilities and receive dedicated technical support from Huawei Solution Architects. They will also benefit from sessions including the 1-1 mentorship with Huawei and mentors like Stripe to nail product-market-fit, develop sound business plan and sharpen go-to-market strategy, curated masterclasses on B2B deal navigation with experienced industry practitioners, and entrepreneur coaching classes to develop world-class pitch decks and effective presentation skills. The programme will provide opportunities to help start-ups build lasting business connections through Huawei’s corporate and venture capital partners such as GSR Ventures and Mycelium, and potentially expand their business to the Southeast Asia and China markets, as they strive towards post-programme investments of up to S$3 million.
Since its inception from Singapore as a start-up accelerator in 2020, HUAWEI CLOUD’s Spark programme has received over 3,000 applications over the past two years across the globe, with US$50 million raised by Spark alumni from investors.
Applications to join the May 2023 cohort of Huawei Spark Incubator programme are open now. Eligible applicants should be Singapore-located, must ensure that teams already have at least a Minimum Viable Product (MVP), possess a strong product-market fit and moat, paid proof-of-concepts, and have previous entrepreneurial or corporate experience, coupled with strong ambition to scale their business regionally and globally by leveraging HUAWEI CLOUD. Interested start-ups may apply here.
Founded in 1987, Huawei is a leading global provider of information and communications technology (ICT) infrastructure and smart devices. We have more than 197,000 employees, and we operate in more than 170 countries and regions, serving more than three billion people around the world.
Our vision and mission are to bring digital to every person, home, and organisation for a fully connected, intelligent world. To this end, we will drive ubiquitous connectivity and promote equal access to networks; bring cloud and artificial intelligence to all four corners of the earth to provide superior computing power where you need it, when you need it; build digital platforms to help all industries and organisations become more agile, efficient, and dynamic; redefine user experience with AI, making it more personalised for people in all aspects of their life, whether they’re at home, in the office, or on the go.
About Infocomm Media Development Authority
The Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA) leads Singapore’s digital transformation by developing a vibrant digital economy and an inclusive digital society. As Architects of Singapore’s Digital Future, we foster growth in Infocomm Technology and Media sectors in concert with progressive regulations, harnessing frontier technologies, and developing local talent and digital infrastructure ecosystems to establish Singapore as a digital metropolis.
PIXEL is an innovation hub for start-ups and corporates to ideate, experiment and build customer-centric digital products. Located in Singapore’s One-North innovation district, PIXEL brings together Infocomm and Media start-ups, corporates, government, ecosystem partners and global players. We build and catalyse the Infocomm and Media start-up communities and eco-system and expand their growth opportunities.
Open Innovation Platform (OIP), Singapore’s national platform for digital innovation, provides professional consultancy support to diagnose business challenges, define problem statements, and crowdsource solutions from 12,000 solution providers. To date, OIP has facilitated over 300 challenges worth more than $9 million in prize monies in sectors such as financial services, healthcare, and manufacturing, covering technologies such as AI, the Internet of Thing and Augmented Reality/Virtual Reality.