In this article

[This is a sponsored article with TERAJU.]

The potential that startup companies have are huge. On a global scale, the value of startups reaches US$3 trillion, equivalent to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of the G7 economies.  

Did you know: The Group of Seven (G7) is an intergovernmental organisation made up of developed economies in France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the US, the UK, and Canada. Government leaders of these countries meet periodically to address international economic and monetary issues, with each member taking over the presidency on a rotating basis.


In Malaysia, the growth of startups has had a positive impact on the country’s economy, creating new job opportunities and contributing to the country’s GDP. In fact, Malaysia scored a perfect 10 in terms of performance and market reach in the Global Start-Up Ecosystem Report 2020

That’s all according to Md Silmi Abd Rahman, CEO of the Unit Peneraju Agenda Bumiputera (TERAJU). It’s a strategic unit established in 2011 under the Prime Minister’s Department to lead, drive, and coordinate Bumiputera participation in the national economy. 

To build up more Bumiputera entrepreneurs and startups, TERAJU has once again opened sign ups for its Skim Usahawan Permulaan Bumiputera (SUPERB 2021) on its website. Launched in 2014, SUPERB has successfully produced 208 Bumiputera entrepreneurs and assisted the winners to realise their ideas and businesses at a higher level.

The semi final at SUPERB 2020 / Image Credit: TERAJU

SUPERB is now in its 16th series and is looking for young Bumiputera entrepreneurs between the ages of 21 to 40 for their pitching competition with an enhanced accelerator programme.

On top of providing the winning ideas with a grant of up to RM500,000, SUPERB 2021 will also include a broader-focused intensive accelerator training segment. 

Seeking young entrepreneurs and startups

The programme is open to Bumiputera entrepreneurs and startups that have been operational for less than 3 years

To qualify, participants must have innovative and creative ideas or products that are in line with TERAJU’s set theme following this year’s Key Economic Growth Areas (KEGA). It’s based on the Shared Prosperity Vision 2030 and embedded in the Bumiputera development framework developed by the strategic unit for the next 10 years.

SUPERB’s 10 KEGA categories this year include solutions surrounding:

  • The digital economy, 
  • Islamic finance, 
  • Tourism, 
  • Manufacturing, 
  • Halal and food, 
  • Agriculture and commodities, 
  • Defense and security, 
  • Modular construction, 
  • Aerospace, and
  • Logistics, transportation, and sustainable mobility.

These selected sectors were identified as future economic activities that demonstrate the potential for rapid growth, in line with the country’s aspiration to achieve high value economic development. 

With these sectors in place, the government’s efforts to boost economic growth will be implemented, thus developing an ecosystem throughout the supply chain. 

Submissions will be screened based on criteria involving the idea’s execution capabilities, the business’s impact, growth potential, and sustainability, along with the proposed use of funds provided, etc. 

Providing guidance to grow

Once submissions have been shortlisted, participants will be split into 2 groups to begin a 6-week accelerator bootcamp in November 2021.

The accelerator programme will ensure that participants are able to understand the continuity of their business ideas. It includes guiding participants through the process of starting a business, management skills, expanding their business’s network, and stabilising their business for the future. 

An example of a topic that will be available in the programme is getting participants to undergo business modelling activities. This would help participants learn about value proposition and growth strategies for their businesses. 

Participants will also learn to identify critical business and financial metrics, while being exposed to the possibility of bootstrapping, the significance of branding, and getting a better understanding of regional market opportunities.

Participants at the SUPERB 2020 road pitch / Image Credit: TERAJU

SUPERB 2021’s accelerator programme comes after TERAJU took into account feedback from jurors in previous pitching sessions that shared weaknesses in participants’ basic business knowledge, other than their pitching techniques.

It’s why the new 6-week programme will also cover business fundamentals from the idea creation stage up until their businesses become successful. Participants will further get to leverage the various existing programs and business ecosystems under TERAJU. 

After the training, participants will pitch to a professional jury panel consisting of a group of entrepreneurs and agency representatives. This is where the winners of SUPERB 2021 will be chosen, but the journey of growth doesn’t end there.

Judges at the SUPERB 2020 grand finals / Image Credit: TERAJU

What awaits the winners next is an intensive traction programme spanning 6 months. There, they will learn about marketing, database building, product launching, and sales to elevate the feasibility of their ventures. 

At the same time, coaching, mentoring, sharing and networking sessions will continue to be organised to improve business acumen. 

But win or lose, TERAJU is confident that all participants of the SUPERB 2021 accelerator programme will still benefit and become entrepreneurs with more integrity, innovation, and resilience.

“Our ultimate goal is to produce the next generation of entrepreneurs who have integrity, dignity and are able to work together to elevate the development of the country,” concluded Md Silmi Abd Rahman.

  • Applications for SUPERB 2021 are open from now until October 17, sign up here.
  • You can read other articles we’ve written about Malaysian startups here.

Featured Image Credit: TERAJU

Subscribe to our newsletter

Stay updated with Vulcan Post weekly curated news and updates.


Vulcan Post aims to be the knowledge hub of Singapore and Malaysia.

© 2021 GRVTY Media Pte. Ltd.
(UEN 201431998C.)

Vulcan Post aims to be the knowledge hub of Singapore and Malaysia.

© 2021 GRVTY Media Pte. Ltd.
(UEN 201431998C.)