“Entrepreneurs are like F1 drivers, and if they want to drive faster, they need their F1 team around them to make sure everything is ready and stable. Then, founders can drive much faster than they normally could.”
That’s according to Ben Lim, the CEO of Nexea. To him, the “team” that entrepreneurs need to drive faster can be found through accelerator programmes, which offer top mentors, opportunity for investments, as well as networking and insights support.
One upcoming accelerator programme is the four-month MYStartup Accelerator, which is receiving applications until January 29, 2024.
Accelerating Malaysia’s startup ecosystem
MYStartup is a national initiative by the Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation (MOSTI), powered by Cradle.
Established in 2021, MYStartup is designed to be the “single window” to Malaysia’s startup ecosystem, offering a platform that fosters inclusive and sustainable growth for founders, developers, and investors.
In line with Malaysia’s goal of becoming the ASEAN Centre of Entrepreneurship by 2030, MYStartup nurtures the ecosystem through capacity-building programmes, including hackathons, bootcamps, and accelerators like the MYStartup Accelerator.
The accelerator is also organised in partnership with NEXEA, a Malaysian venture capital and startup accelerator firm.
To create its third cohort, the programme will be selecting 25 to 30 startups. According to a press release, the accelerator offers potential investments to finalists ranging from RM50,000 to RM1,000,000, along with grants up to RM600,000 per startup.
More than monetary gain, the startups will also get connections with corporations in related fields for potential outcomes such as acquisitions, the press release stated.
“They can expect comprehensive support, including industry-leading mentors, collaborations with corporate partners, masterclasses, and potential grant and further funding opportunities,” the press release elaborated about the programme.
“With a strategic approach towards fostering entrepreneurship, the finalists will qualify for cash prizes.”
The hall of fame
Some notable names from past cohorts include Lapasar and Doople. Along with other startups, they were introduced to corporates and secured over RM5,000,000 in funding, the press release stated.
Thinesh, the CEO and founder of Lapasar shared that mentorship and monetary investment were the most valuable parts of the programme for him.
“Monetary investments allowed us to grow, and I believe mentorship is the single most important factor as to why Lapasar grew and, most importantly, survived,” he explained. “I was not an experienced founder, and mentorship gave me perspective of what not to do.”
Mohd Noor Hisham, Head of MYStartup Malaysia, shared that in their previous cohort, up to four startups received a cumulative investment of RM675,000 and had total sales up to RM4 million within a year.
The second cohort’s winners included AFA, Engage Life, I Jalan, and EB Tech.
“This year, we aim to create an even bigger impact, propelling more innovative startups into the Malaysian ecosystem and assisting them to expand regionally,” Hisham said.
Finding the next tech giant
To apply to the accelerator, the startup needs to be:
- Incorporated in Malaysia
- Scalable and technology-driven
- Revenue-generating or have an MVP (minimum viable product)
- Looking to expand regionally or globally
Applicants can visit the MYStartup Accelerator website to apply by January 29.
We look forward to seeing homegrown startups with potential joining and getting the support they need to accelerate further.
- Learn more about MYStartup Accelerator here.
- Read other articles we’ve written about Malaysian startups here.
Featured Image Credit: MYStartup