Thailand’s National Innovation Agency (NIA) and Israel’s AGW Group (AGW) today announced the launch of SPARK — a global acceleration programme aimed at Thai startups. The goal is to enhance their competitiveness for the global market.
During the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between NIA and AGW, Dr. Pun-Arj Chairatana, the Director of NIA, said in his welcome address that,
“This is a good first step for business development between Israel and Thailand. The Global Acceleration program is part of the Startup Thailand ecosystem, which will bring Thai companies to experience Startup Nation in Israel. We hope to have support from Thai startup community as well.”
SPARK consists of an intensive eight-week long bootcamp in which startups will gain access to AGW’s network of Israeli mentors in the following expertise: Cyber Security, Big Data and Analytics, Internet of Things (IoT), FinTech, as well as Startup Legal and Intellectual Property (IP).
Outstanding startups emerging from this program will also have a chance to travel to Israel for fundraising opportunities and further exposure through cross-pollination with companies like Google and Barclays. Post-SPARK, AGW will continue to engage and monitor the startups’ growth by providing further mentorships up to two hours per month for two years.
In her congratulatory message Ms. Eden Pozin, the Israeli Embassy’s Head of Economic & Trade Mission to Thailand and Myanmar, said,
“The young generation in Thailand are very talented, skilled and willing to learn. Now, the challenge for us it to combine these elements with a more mature ecosystem that will support innovation and entrepreneurship, which will allow these inventors to transform into products that will be relevant in the global market eventually.”
Mr. Eitan Lavie, Chairman, AGW Group, added, “AGW Group believes that by joining forces with NIA, it will allow [stakeholders] to leverage the ability to approach and invite all the players in the Thai ecosystem to collaborate in exposing their companies to this global window of high-skilled knowledge.”
Besides participating stakeholders from Israel, the program also boasts of regional heavyweights in Southeast Asia, such as Jeffrey Paine, Founding Partner, Golden Gate Ventures, Koichi Saito, Founder & General Partner, KK Fund, as well as support from the Thai Venture Capital Association (TVCA).
Thanapong Na Ranong, President at TVCA, was in-attendance and explained the association’s involvement with SPARK. It includes the review of startup applications, provision of mentorship and support, as well as full participation on demo day.
He also hinted that startups from this program who demonstrate high potential can be considered for funding opportunities.
The NIA is a public organisation that works to promote economic vibrancy by partnering with business in various industries to promote economic competitiveness. It wants to use innovation as the principle tool to enhance the quality of life.
For its part, the AGW Group wants to connect the East and the West. It facilitates dataflow between different locations and is particularly connected to Thailand.
Those who are interested in the program, can apply at spark.nia.or.th from February 23 – March 10, 2017. The list of admitted startups will be announced on March 21 and the boot camp will start on March 27.
For any additional inquiries, please contact [email protected]
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