SK Startup Fellowship 2023 announces award winners

Wednesday, Dec 06, 2023 15:13

Top three winners at the Demo Day SK Startup Fellowship 2023. — Photo courtesy of the organiser

KAMEREO, EcoTruck and FoodMap Asia won the top awards with a cash grant of US$50,000 each at the Demo Day SK Startup Fellowship 2023 in HCM City last week.

KAMEREO is a B2B commerce company for F&B businesses in Việt Nam that builds supply chains from upstream to downstream to supply food ingredients better and cheaper.

EcoTruck is a tech-based logistics company. It focuses on B2B trucking (both first mile and middle mile) and has built the first and biggest ecosystem of supporting services for trucking suppliers.

FoodMap Asia is a bridge connecting producers and consumers to help optimize agricultural supply chains and enhance the value of Vietnamese agricultural products.

BUYO Bioplastics received the award with a grant of $25,000.

The rest of the 10 finalists in the event received $15,000 each.

Held annually by SK Group, the second-largest conglomerate in Korea, the SK Startup Fellowship programme aims at identifying and supporting early-stage startup talents, particularly those with a strong social impact.

The fourth edition of the programme drew nearly 200 applications, underscoring the programme's growing prominence in the Vietnamese startup ecosystem after three successful batches.

Speaking at the opening of the Demo Day, Chaerhan Chun, Senior Vice President and Head of SK Vietnam, said: “We understand that startups play a vital role in driving economic growth and societal development. That is why we established the SK Startup Fellowship, to provide aspiring entrepreneurs with the necessary resources, mentorship, and opportunities to turn their ideas into successful businesses. In spite of the challenges posed by the current economic downturn, the SK Startup Fellowship 2023 fellows have demonstrated unwavering commitment and adaptability.”

Trần Duy Đông, Deputy Minister of Planning and Investment, highly appreciated the efforts of SK Group in organising the programme, which has sponsored more than $1 million equity-free grant for 37 Vietnamese startups in the past three years.

“The programme has promoted innovation and entrepreneurship in Việt Nam, contributing to creating new momentum to connect Vietnamese startups with the Korean startup ecosystem. Through this, we also request that SK Group as well as investment funds and investors continue to comment on the policies of the government and relevant ministries in order to improve polices regarding investment, especially in the field of venture capital so that we can have Vietnamese startups with footholds in international markets, thereby also improving the competitiveness of the Vietnam economy," he said.

A noteworthy highlight of SKSF 2023 was the Seoul Workshop, a business trip to Korea held in September. During this trip, the top 10 startups engaged in face-to-face meetings with senior executives of SK Group at the company's headquarters. Additionally, they participated in networking events, connecting with prominent Korean startups and having one-on-one meetings with potential investors. — VNS

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