Innov8 Sparks to boost start-ups in Asia Pacific region
Singapore, 9 April 2014 – Start-ups in Asia Pacific will now get more help entering new markets across the region, with the launch of Innov8 Sparks.
A first of its kind alliance in the region by the SingTel Group and its regional mobile associates, Innov8 Sparks will provide assistance to eligible start-ups to expand outside their respective home markets, into Australia, Indonesia, Philippines, Singapore and Thailand.
The founding members of Innov8 Sparks are SingTel Innov8, AIS The Startup, Kickstart Ventures by Globe, Optus-Innov8 Seed, and Telkomsel “Teman-Dev”.
Mr Edgar Hardless, CEO, SingTel Innov8, said “We are excited about the launch of Innov8 Sparks, which will help start-ups supported by our programmes to expand beyond their home markets into the SingTel Group footprint.”
Mr Dustin Cheng, CEO of ZAP, added “Entering new markets is especially hard for a start-up. ZAP has benefited from new connections to both investors and partners provided by Kickstart Ventures and other members of Innov8 Sparks. Many other start-ups will now be able to experience these benefits too.” ZAP is a rewards platform in the Philippines that was successfully launched last year with the support of Globe’s Kickstart Ventures.
Start-ups in the Innov8 Sparks programme will have access to working space, introductions to local partners and start-up communities, as well as local market information and resources. Expanding beyond local shores is never easy for start-ups in the region, but the head start provided by Innov8 Sparks will help increase their chances of success.
More information on Innov8 Sparks can be found at http://innov8.singtel.com/innov8 sparks.html.
About SingTel Innov8
SingTel Innov8, a wholly-owned subsidiary of the SingTel Group, is a corporate venture capital fund, with its own set of decision making, approval and funding processes. It has an initial fund size of S$200 million.
SingTel Innov8 focuses its investments on technologies and solutions that lead to quantum changes in network capabilities, next generation devices, digital content services and enablers to enhance customer experience. It works closely with the ecosystem of leading innovators, developers, government agencies, R&D and capital providers to bring cutting-edge technologies and solutions to the various markets the SingTel Group operates in.
About AIS The Startup
AIS The Startup is the prime start-up associate, subsidiary of Digital Product Development Department of AIS, the leading mobile operator in Thailand. AIS The Startup offers opportunities for all creative-minded entrepreneurs, innovative inventors and visionary businesses to become an AIS ICP (Incubated Content Partner).
As one of our ICPs, you will gain a chance to introduce your product or service to the real digital market or enhance your existing digital product/ service to have greater market appeal. Furthermore, all the talented individuals who become our ICPs will receive the full support of AIS and our business partners and access to more than 500 million customers.
About Kickstart Ventures
Kickstart is an incubator and investment firm which helps start-ups operating in the Philippines to build robust businesses and technical foundations, and to scale. Kickstart puts big company resources – capital, facilities, expertise, and business connections – behind the start-ups that it funds so they can launch faster and achieve scale and profitability sooner.
Kickstart was incorporated in March 2012 to serve as Globe Telecom’s wholly-owned incubator and investment firm with a focus on digital start-ups. As a strategic early-stage investor, Kickstart is frequently a start-up founder’s first institutional investor, and an active mentor and business partner.
About Optus-Innov8 Seed
Optus-Innov8 Seed is a collaboration between Optus and SingTel Innov8, bringing together funding and resources to help support Australian technology start-ups at seed stage.
Optus-Innov8 Seed provides access to SingTel Group, one of Asia’s largest telecommunications groups, and is a supporter of grassroots initiatives that help grow the Australian tech start-up ecosystem.
About Telkomsel “Teman-Dev”
“Teman-Dev” is a developer support initiative from Telkomsel, seeking to build Indonesia’s local digital creative industry.
We enable local app developers to use Telkomsel’s Application Programming Interfaces (API)s, such as billing integration, mobile advertising and other operator API’s. “Teman-Dev” focuses on bringing local apps to market across the Telkomsel network, which has more than 125 million customers in Indonesia.
ZAP is a rewards platform funded by Kickstart Ventures. It started operations in the Philippines last March 2013. Zap introduces shoppers to a world of rewards by partnering with brands and offering 5%-20% CashBack which can be accumulated and used to purchase anything across the growing ZAP network.