Celebrating its 14th year in Thailand, Imagine Cup serves as a platform that empowers students to achieve more through technology, and stimulates the country’s startup market
BANGKOK, 19 April 2016 – Microsoft (Thailand) Limited, with support from the U.S. Embassy in Thailand, today announced the three winning teams for the World Citizenship, Innovation and Game Design competitions of Imagine Cup Thailand 2016. The teams emerged victorious amidst stiff competition after being shortlisted to the final 15 teams, selected from over 100 submissions nationwide.
Imagine Cup Thailand 2016 was held under “Student2Startups” theme, as Southeast Asia is becoming one of the best places to establish a start-up. In the past years, Thailand ranked alongside Vietnam as only the region’s fourth-biggest tech start-up country in terms of venture capital deals and funding, but things are changing now as the startup market is starting to spread its wings. In 2015, the Kingdom attracted THB1.1 billion in venture capital (VC), showing a 170% increase in VC funding, compared to 2014, and these numbers are expected to rise even more in 2016 as the government has pledged to support the startup industry and make Thailand “start-up haven”.
Imagine Cup Thailand allows young creative students to pitch their innovative ideas to industry professionals and acquire essential business skills that will bring their products to life and add value to the developing Thai startup market, which now consists of approximately 2,000 startups. In the 14 years that the Imagine Cup has been running, Thailand has produced three overall global winners – in 2007, 2010 and 2012. Numerous promising entrepreneurs and social enterprises have emerged from Imagine Cup such as Pichai Sodsai of Team Skeek, global winner of the Software Design Competition in 2010; Suthat Ronglong of Team SuperLove Factory, a world finalist in 2010; and Team DOM, Thailand winner of the Innovation Competition in 2014.
Siriporn Pajharawat Director of Developer Experience & Platform Evangelism (DX) Group, Microsoft Thailand, said “With both public and private sectors in Thailand actively supporting business startups, Microsoft is the only IT company in the country with a range of programs to strengthen every segment of Thai IT and software industry in an holistic way – from technical advices, access to technologies, providing software products to business networking opportunities of the Independent Software Vendors (ISVs), to building qualified IT talents for supporting students and startups. These fourteen years of Imagine Cup Thailand successfully proves that Microsoft remains firm in its commitment to empower youths in Thailand, and around the world, to harness technology to achieve more.”
U.S. Ambassador to Thailand Glyn T. Davies said, “The U.S. Embassy is proud to be a sponsor of this year’s Imagine Cup, “World Citizenship” competition. The creativity of students and their commitment to champion social issues and make a difference are a true inspiration. What begins as a competition can evolve into an innovative entrepreneurial endeavor to effect both social change and support economic growth. It is exciting to be a part of these innovations.”
“It was a really difficult decision to choose the winners today, as we were stunned by all the innovative ideas produced by some of the brightest minds in the country as well as their outstanding work and team spirit. We believe that incredible, world-changing innovations often come from students, and hope that participating in the Imagine Cup will give these talented young people the so much needed boost to do great things in the future,” added Siriporn Pajharawat.
The three winning teams from World Citizenship, Innovation and Game Design competitions will receive the royal trophy from HRH Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn in June, a cash prize and a ticket to the World Finals, where they will have an opportunity to pitch their respective ideas to Microsoft employees.
Additionally, the winning team in a special Windows 10 Internet of Things (IoT) special awards Category will receive a cash prize and Windows 10 tablet, meanwhile the winner of US Embassy People’s Choice Award will receive a cash prize.
More than 1.65 million students from more than 190 countries have participated in Imagine Cup since its inception.
Microsoft (Nasdaq “MSFT” @Microsoft) is the leading platform and productivity company for the mobile-first, cloud-first world, and its mission is to empower every person and every organization on the planet to achieve more.
Established in 1993, Microsoft (Thailand) Limited aims to Make 70 Million Lives Better by enabling Thai people and businesses to realize their full potential through technology that transforms the way people work, play, and communicate. We offer software, services, and devices that deliver new opportunities, greater convenience, and enhanced value to people’s lives. Working with communities and the Thai government, Microsoft and its partners are committed to working closely with organizations and people across Thailand to fully harness the power of technology and innovation.
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For further information, (press) please contact:
Pornravee Suramool or Nilawan Meedech
Hill+Knowlton Strategies Thailand
Tel: 0-2627-3501 ext. 110, 206 or 081-735-9213, 086-980-6551