Grab Ventures Ignite programme launches to support local startups

February 27, 2020 | 16:33
Grab, Southeast Asia’s leading super app, today announced the launch of Grab Ventures Ignite, an accelerator programme for early-stage startups, as part of the Grab for Good development roadmap in Vietnam which aims to create greater social and economic benefits for the country through technology.
grab ventures ignite programme launches to support local startups
Grab launches the Grab Ventures Ignite programme in Vietnam to facilitate's the government's startup ecosystem ambitions

Grab Ventures Ignite will nurture and support promising Vietnamese startups in their journey to become national champions in Vietnam’s tech startup ecosystem, in line with the government’s national strategy to create 10 technology unicorns by 2030. Vietnam is the first country in Southeast Asia where Grab is launching Grab Ventures Ignite (GVI), its early-stage startup support programme.

GVI brings Grab’s unique strengths and capabilities as a regional tech platform to nurture Vietnamese early-stage startups. The launch of GVI marks the expansion of Grab’s umbrella of startup programmes which currently includes Grab Ventures Velocity (GVV), Grab’s flagship startup scale-up programme.

GVV has so far supported the growth of 15 startups regionally across two batches of the programme. In support of the Vietnamese government’s objective to develop the national startup ecosystem, GVI signed a strategic partnership with Vietnam’s National Innovation Center under the Ministry of Planning and Investment.

Under the partnership, GVI and the NIC will collaborate jointly in planning and executing the GVI programme, accelerating the development of digital economy and providing potential startups with support. GVI’s programme partners include regional venture capital firm Gobi Partners, coworking space developer Toong , YKVN, and collaborations with Amazon Web Services.

Participating startups also benefit from a curated immersion programme hosted in Singapore by Singapore's Infocomm Media Development Authority and cross-border sharing with Singapore-based startups. Programme winners will be offered investments and in-kind benefits.

“The startup ecosystem in Vietnam is growing incredibly fast, and tech clusters are also expanding geographically. We are proud to be part of this growth story and actively contributing to it, whether it's through our R&D centre in Ho Chi Minh City, investing in partnerships with local startups like Moca, or enabling millions of people in Vietnam to have greater access to digital services,” said Nguyen Thai Hai Van, managing director of Grab Vietnam.

“Today, we are excited to launch GVI with the backing of the Vietnam National Innovation Center and other world-class partners. With GVI , we are committed to encouraging tech entrepreneurship and support the growth of the vibrant startup ecosystem in Vietnam,” she said.

GVI will evaluate startups based on a range of criteria, including but not limited to core team strength, sector attractiveness, value proposition, business model, and possible synergies with Grab’s ecosystem.

The programme will announce up to five winners and each winner will have a chance to win up to $150,000 in investment. Gobi Partners is Grab’s funding partner for this programme. This makes GVI investment one of the biggest amongst Vietnam's startup programmes so far. All startups in the cohort will also have the opportunity to raise more funding from external investors during the Demo Day at the end of the programme, which will be attended by prominent investors from across the region.

In addition, all programme participants will receive cloud benefits of up to $100,000 each. Each programme winner will receive six months of co-working space as well as legal and financial advisory at the end of the programme.

All programme participants will get access to 14-weeks of world-class expert workshops, one-on-one mentorship from senior leaders, immersion trips to regional Grab markets, as well as peer learning and networking.

As part of Grab’s strategic collaboration with IMDA-PIXEL, participating startups will benefit from Grab’s cross-border sharing to better understand the market landscape. Startups interested in applying for the GVI accelerator programme can apply by April 10, 2020 here. For more information about GVI, click here.

By Thanh Van

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