Biggest creator of startups in Europe launches office in Singapore
Singapore’s Infocomm Investments and UK-based talent investor Entrepreneur First (EF) has announced a partnership to set up EF’s first ever international office in Singapore.
The initiative aims to support 400 ambitious individuals as part of Singapore’s push towards a ‘Smart Nation’ and an innovation-led economy.
EF works exclusively with technical individuals to help them build deep tech startups from scratch. The plan is to give these startups opportunities to work closely with a select group of highly experienced venture partners to build their startups and prepare for next-stage investments.
Since 2013, EF has worked with 200 individuals and built 50 startups which have so far raised over $60 million in venture capital from leading global investors. Collectively, these startups are now worth more than $250 million.
“The current turbulence in financial markets doesn’t displace the longer term picture in Asia: its markets are expanding faster than the rest of the world, and its consumers will increasingly demand quality and innovative products. EF’s new presence in Singapore will help catalyze technology innovation to take advantage of these opportunities,” said Singapore’s Deputy Prime Minister (DPM) & Coordinating Minister for Economic and Social Policies, Tharman Shanmugaratnam during the launch event in London.
The Minister added that EF intends to help individuals translate their ideas into commercial solutions, covering many areas such as healthcare, the digital economy and solutions for urban sustainability.
“Singapore’s Smart Nation journey will require innovation to be part of everything we do. One of our biggest priorities is to create new value by better translating the world-class R&D in Singapore into greater commercial success. We believe Entrepreneur First’s model of working with deeply-technical individuals in Singapore will lift our already-vibrant startup ecosystem to a whole new level.” said Steve Leonard, Chairman of Infocomm Investments.
Asked why Singapore was chosen as the first destination for the expansion, Matt Clifford, CEO and co-founder of Entrepreneur First, said Singapore is second to none when it comes to talent, innovation and the desire to create startups.
““Entrepreneur First is the biggest creator of startups in Europe, and we have ambitions to be even bigger. We started with the vision that the best and most ambitious technical people will be founders. With the strong support of Infocomm Investments, our first international office in Singapore marks a new chapter for us and we are extremely excited,” he added.
EF Singapore aims to recruit 40-50 individuals for its pioneer cohort in September 2016. The program comprises two 3-month phases. During the first three months, each participant receives a monthly stipend of S$3,500 ($2,446.57).
Should a company be successfully formed after the first phase, EF Singapore will invest a further S$25,000 ($17,475.52) for an 8 percent equity stake. The total investment (including stipends) in each successfully formed company is approximately S$50,000 ($34,951.04)
Foo Chi Hsia, High Commissioner for the Republic of Singapore, said they hope to see more technology companies in the UK embark on collaborations with their Singapore counterparts for mutual benefit.