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Singapore teaches kids to form start-ups

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The government is matching venture capital investments and teaching kids in grade school how to start their own companies

Singapore has spent the last decade building out an infrastructure to help its best and brightest get over their fear of failure so they can launch new companies. "In the early 2000s the government decided we didn't want to put all our eggs into the foreign investment basket, which means we need to create our own start-ups," said Edwin Chow, director of planning at SPRING Singapore, an agency under the Ministry of Trade and Industry founded in 2003 to promote and support start-ups.

The nation boasts a broad range of government-sponsored initiatives as well as public-private partnerships. They include almost 40 government-supported incubator programs and several programs that match, dollar-for-dollar, any money a start-up gets from the private sector up to $1.5 million. To name just a few:

  • The Hub Singapore, a entrepreneurial-minded co-working space that supports 500 start-ups. It raised $1.1 million in a Series A round of funding in June.
  • Block 71, one of three buildings in the LaunchPad @ One North complex is a government-funded startup incubator in Singapore.
  • Program at the LaunchPad @ One North, a SPRING-funded start-up incubator, helped Sanjna Parasrampuria found her company, Newcleus, a predictive analytics platform for high-end sales.
  • Joint project of the JTC Corp., a government agency that encourages economic development, and SPRING Singapore, it's a three-building complex with three more buildings slated to open by 2017.
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Guest Saturday, 11 July 2020