There are just four days left for Asia-Pacific startups to submit their applications to join Singapore Food Bowl – the new, 100%-online program offered by GROW, the Southeast Asian agrifoodtech accelerator backed by AgFunder.
Apply here now before June 7.
Developed in response to the Covid-19 pandemic and the supply chain weaknesses it’s laid bare, Singapore Food Bowl is aimed at building a more resilient, decentralized agrifood ecosystem.
It’s also tied into Singapore’s ‘30 by 30’ policy initiative, which aims for the city-state to enhance its food security by domestically sourcing 30% of its nutritional needs by 2030 – up from less than 10% today.
“Initiatives such as Singapore Food Bowl will be important in driving activity and interest in the agrifoodtech ecosystem, as well as identifying novel innovations that can be applied to Singapore’s landscape,” said an Enterprise Singapore spokesperson.
As one of the world’s most recognized fruit and vegetable brands, Dole will bring invaluable contributions and industry insight to Singapore Food Bowl in its role as lead sponsor.
“Dole is very proud to take leadership in nurturing and growing the Singapore agrifoodtech ecosystem, particularly during this time of uncertainty, when courage and foresight is needed to drive the sector forward,” said Dole Packaged Foods president Pier Luigi Sigismondi.
“Through our engagement with the local ecosystem, we hope to find solutions to help us solve many of the challenges our industry is facing – including equitable living and yield predictions for farmers; zero waste in our supply chain; new, innovative, sustainable packaging solutions; and more.”
Best-in-class accelerator program
As well as mentoring from some of the region’s top food and tech companies and coaching from GROW, successful Singapore Food Bowl applicants will get access to AgFunder’s unrivaled network of almost 80,000 members and subscribers.
They’ll be able to immerse themselves in what is rapidly becoming Asia’s agrifoodtech hub – without having to hop on a plane to get there.
They’ll also be in the running to secure investment from AgFunder or its partners, as well as to cement relationships with industry and research institutions.
Don’t just take our word for it – check out below what the first cohort of our flagship accelerator program gained from joining GROW.
“Immensely valuable” insights
Homegrown Singaporean startup Singrow has created tropical strawberry varietals, as well as a patent-protected hydroponics system for their cultivation.
“We appreciated the collective wisdom of the industry veterans who also acted as mentors for the program. The insights shared were immensely valuable, and equipped us with the appropriate tools to assess the pathways ahead of us,” says Timothy Chua, Singrow’s business development manager.
“Industry guests from Nestlé and other companies provided additional feedback and helped us avoid being blindsided by aspects of business that we hadn’t considered, such as the intricacies of intellectual property management.”
Singrow managed to secure follow-on funding after the program from AgFunder.
“Huge markets for us”
Bill Choi is co-founder at NanoLambda, a GROW graduate from South Korea which is developing the world’s smallest optical spectrometer for monitoring food quality, among other purposes.
“We were networking with top tier companies, government agencies, and R&D centers,” he says of his time in the program. “Everything was well-coordinated and arranged for us. Many potential customers now understood we are serious about agrifood, with a really useful technology. I also learned Southeast Asia and India could become huge markets for us going forward.”
NanoLambda secured A*STAR, Singapore’s national research and development institute, during its participation in the GROW Accelerator. It also found a manufacturing partner for the startup’s devices.
“Defining factor” in business growth
Intello Labs has gone from strength to strength since joining GROW’s first cohort. The startup from Gurgaon, India, raised $5.9 million in Series A funding last month from AgFunder’s GROW Asia Fund, Omnivore, Saama Capital, Nexus venture Partners, and SVG Ventures Thrive.
Head of Asia-Pacific operations Tanmay Bhargava says that participating in GROW has been a “defining factor” in Intello’s growth in the region.
The program helped the startup with “pitching our proposition in the right way, our go-to-market plan for the region, market access in Australia, and – most importantly – visibility,” he says. “Among the tangible outcomes, the most important for us were business introductions to potential prospects and industry experts.”
Singapore Food Bowl applicants should be from the Asia-Pacific region. They’ll need at least a minimum viable product (MVP) to be accepted into the program, which will last for up to 12 weeks.
Applications can be submitted at www.gogrow.co. The application period runs until Sunday 7 June 2020.