Tech Fest to link start-ups, investors

Wednesday, Nov 01, 2017 10:02

Dr Do Ngoc Chung and his company’s innovative automatic sprout growing machine. — VNS Photo Khanh Duong

More than 4,000 people, 200 start-ups, 130 international investors and investment funds and 80 big firms are expected to participate in one of the largest annual events for Vietnamese start-up community: Tech Fest 2017 at Grand Plaza Hotel in Ha Noi on November 14 and 15.

Tech Fest 2017, hosted by Ministry of Science and Technology with the theme “Ecosystem connects”, aims to create connections for domestic and foreign stakeholders in the start-up ecosystem to share useful information.

According to the ministry, investment matching activities will take place before, during and after Tech Fest so that start-ups can access potential customers, investors, leading tech experts and organizations supporting entrepreneurship. Meanwhile, the event enables big and medium enterprises to find innovative solutions from start-ups.

According to Deputy Minister of Science and Technology Tran Van Tung, Tech Fest 2017 has more participants and new features compared with the festivals in 2015 and 2016.

There will be six sectors, called villages: Community (organizations supporting start-ups with innovative solutions), AgriTech (Agriculture sector), EdTech (Educational technology), MedTech (Medical Technology), Tourism, Food and Beverage, Emerging Tech (containing potential start-ups) and Frontier and FinTech.

Each village will set up its own content. The main activities include an exhibition of startup products and services, panel discussions and workshops, investment matching, the startup discovery competition and an awards ceremony for “Viet Nam’s innovative startups 2017”.

Deputy Minister Tung said "2017 marks the development of a nationwide startup movement. Innovative start-ups have been developed by a range of ministries, sectors, localities, political-social organizations and associations".

Tech Fest 2017 is part of national efforts to develop a robust and innovative start-up ecosystem in Viet Nam by 2025.

“The highlight of the event is the launching of a portal which links start-ups, investors, policy makers and start-up assisting centres,,” the Deputy Minister said. “The portal will provide a database about domestic and international inventions and technologies being developed in Viet Nam. Start-ups can also find addresses of supporting centres and information about administrative procedures and policies needed when they start their businesses.”

Great expectations

Comprehensive Energy Solutions Ltd Company is among the enterprises taking part in Tech Fest this year.

Dr Do Ngoc Chung, Chairman of the Members’ Council of Comprehensive Energy Solutions Ltd Company, said, “There have not been many connections between enterprises and scientists. They have not placed confidence in each other.”

He hopes that Tech Fest will enable enterprises and scientists to build trust and network.

Chung’s two-year old company gathers young people who have passion in research and development (R&D). Chung and his colleagues hope to apply their scientific research to make useful products for consumers. The company has developed and sold out to the market clean vegetable and sprout growing machines, a funnel to avoid water overflowing and floods and chemical-free toothpicks made from polypropylene to protect consumers’ health. Chung aims to develop his company into a leading R&D centre in Viet Nam and export his products.

Nguyen Thanh Hai, co-founder of Truong Sinh Company, which provides products made from ca gai leo (Solanum procumbens) to cure Hepatitis B, said, “For a young start-up like us, the difficulties are human resources and business strategy. The capacity of our core team is limited. We have to develop the project and at the same time develop the capacity of human resources management and financial management.”

“At Tech fest, we expect to introduce our products made from natural resources in order to promote Vietnamese medicines and contribute to the preservation of Vietnamese medicines,” she said. “We also want to seek investment sources and receive market consultation from experts towards a slow but strong step in the future.”

Any concerned stakeholders can access the websites and for registration and to follow Tech Fest’s activities. — VNS

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