Four startups from Vietnam, Philippines, Sri Lanka, and Singapore are winners at Microsoft’s inaugural Emerge X Regional Pitching Competition in Asia Pacific, while seven Indonesian startups were selected to join the Year-Long Microsoft Emerge X program, part of Microsoft’s Highway to a 100 Unicorns initiative. The winning startups for the regional pitching competition are:
- Abivin from Vietnam: An AI-powered platform that optimizes supply chains across multiple sectors by solving the vehicle routing problem
- Lifetrack Medical Systems in the Philippines and Singapore: A cloud-based platform that provides affordable access to medical imaging in emerging markets
- Agrithmics from Sri Lanka: A cloud-based solution that enriches the agri-industry by digitizing the farm to factory supply chain and connecting farmers and buyers
- Milky Way AI, from Singapore: An AI-powered smart retail solution leveraging image recognition technology to help retailers manage shelf inventory and maximize sales
“For Asia Pacific to remain at the forefront of global transformation, it takes disruptors, visionaries, and futurists. There are no limits to what people can achieve when the world and technology reflect the diversity of everyone who uses it. Which is why at Microsoft, we build technology so that others can create technology, and to be successful we all need to come together,” said Andrea Della Mattea, President, Microsoft Asia Pacific. “Through the Highway to a 100 Unicorns and our Emerge X program, we aim to help startups on the road to innovation, where they can meet unarticulated needs of the industry and help businesses become resilient.”
Growing the Startup Ecosystem in Emerging Markets across APAC
The Emerge X Program is part of Microsoft’s Highway to a 100 Unicorns initiative, which was launched in Asia Pacific in October 2020 after overwhelming success in India. Microsoft engaged with more than 70 prominent startup ecosystem players and governments across 16 countries, who then nominated more than 300 of their most promising for the program.
The 16 countries engaged in the program are Bangladesh, Bhutan, Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Maldives, Myanmar, Nepal, New Zealand, Philippines, Sri Lanka, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam.
79 startups were selected to join the Microsoft Emerge X program, including seven Indonesian startups Crowde, GREDU, Kiddo.id, Konvergen AI, Neurosensum, Ritase and Tjetak. As an Emerge X startup, they will participate in a year-long mentorship program with Microsoft for Startups which is designed to help them scale and accelerate their growth. They will also receive GitHub and Azure credits, have the opportunity to attend a Founder Bootcamp for 3 days, gain access to enterprise clients globally through Microsoft’s unique co-sell program, and interact with Microsoft experts and industry stalwarts.
“We are proud to see Indonesian startups compete on the same playing fields of top-level startups from the Asia Pacific, showing their great potential to addressing complex industry issues. Microsoft remains committed to help others achieve more, and, via Microsoft Emerge X, hope to further develop a world-class startup ecosystem that will contribute more to the digital and creative economies in Indonesia,” said Haris Izmee, President Director Microsoft Indonesia.
Of these, 21 of the Emerge X startups pitched their ideas at the Emerge X Regional Pitching Competition, held at the Philippine Startup Week 2020, with Abivin, Lifetrack Medical Systems, Agrithmics and Milky Way AI identified as the top startups in the whole region. They were selected by a jury of leading investors and startup ecosystem leaders, including investors from BOV Capital, Cradle, Monk’s Hill Ventures, Movac, M12, SBK Tech Ventures, Sequoia, Vista Consulting Group, and 54i Ventures, and ecosystem leaders from GitHub and Target Accelerator.
APPENDIX A: List of Indonesian Startups in Microsoft Emerge X program
|Crowde||Crowde is an agriculture-focused financial technology startup that empowers farmers across Indonesia with technology and capital. Beyond connecting investors and farmers, CROWDE also integrates the entire Indonesian agriculture ecosystem through technology.|
|GREDU||GREDU is a social ed-tech platform that aims to enhance the overall schooling experience, through encouraging engagement and collaboration between teachers, parents, and students.|
|Kiddo.id||Kiddo.id is an ed-tech platform for family activity providers to offer ticketing and activity programs to parents looking for kid- and family-friendly activities, around learning, playing, and vacationing.|
|Konvergen AI||Konvergen AI is an artificial intelligence (AI) company that builds machine learning powered data capture solutions to automate workflow processes. Their proprietary technology alleviates additional human labor to boost employee retention, customer satisfaction and overall better workflow efficiency.|
|Neurosensum||Neurosensum is a neuroscience and artificial intelligence (AI) company. It leverages technology including virtual reality (VR), electroencephalogram (EEG), eye tracking, reaction time-based applications, and facial coding, to combine implicit data with explicit survey data of the consumer and provide brands with deep, neuroscience-based insights.|
|Ritase||Founded in 2018, Ritase has grown from an operation with 13 employees working in a small warehouse, to the biggest logistics digital platform in Indonesia. Ritase’s platform provides a B2B digital transportation system that connects enterprise shippers, medium scale transporters and truck drivers across the country, to simplify the logistics supply chain and create a more efficient ground freight process.|
|Tjetak||Tjetak is a tech-based packaging platform helping businesses get the best packaging development & procurement.|