ScaleUp Malaysia partners Quest Ventures to nurture Malaysian startups

The Edge

ScaleUp Malaysia has entered into an exclusive partnership with Quest Ventures, a Singapore-based venture capital firm, to help top Malaysian start-ups scale their businesses regionally. The partnership will bring in a foreign direct investment deal into Malaysia worth US$1 million (RM4.15 million) to develop and grow Malaysian start-ups.

Only companies registered in Malaysia qualify and they will be selected based on four key criteria — revenue generation, ability to demonstrate product-market fit, potential of highly scalable products or services with large growth potential and possibility of global expansion.

From the list of applicants, 24 companies will be shortlisted to begin their accelerator journey in October this year, before presenting their solutions in front of an investment committee at the end of the programme. As part of the partnership, the programme, powered by Quest Ventures, will invest at least US$60,250 (RM250,000) in up to 12 of these companies.

“In this second cohort, we want to empower solutions that tap into the buy-in of the digital economy and prime them through our rigorous syllabus designed to take local companies to the global stage. Our partnership with Quest Ventures will enable our scale-ups to quantum leap their growth, access adjacent markets and unlock a wealth of economic possibilities through value creation, needed now more than ever with our collapsing global economy brought about by Covid-19,” said Dr V Sivapalan, senior partner of ScaleUp Malaysia.

James Tan, managing partner of Quest Ventures, said the partnership with ScaleUp Malaysia will enable them to support the top tech talent in Malaysia and provide necessary and timely support to power their disruptive businesses to break into the post-pandemic emerging Asia markets.

“Beyond the traditional investment role of VCs, we see it as our tech ecosystem duty to drive a speedier adoption of the digital economy,” he said.

Sivapalan added that they are currently looking for technology investments, such as healthtech, and encourage tech companies to apply. “If you’re an impact company that also [uses] technology, we will encourage you to apply as well.”

Touching on the programme’s modules and syllabus, ScaleUp Malaysia’s managing partner Andre Sequerah said during the press conference that the syllabus has taken into account the Covid-19 pandemic.

He explained that the Cohort 2 programme is a fundamental business programme and based on all the best practices they have experienced over the years when coaching companies. However, the pandemic has brought in new variables, which have been added to the latest programme.

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