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IndustryDeep Tech
Founded22 November 2016; 2 years ago (2016-11-22)
FounderSteve Leonard, Founding CEO
Key people
Steve Leonard (Founding CEO) Ms Yong Ying-I (Chairman)
OwnerGovernment of Singapore

SGInnovate is a private organisation wholly owned by the Singapore Government.[1] Their mission is to help entrepreneurial scientists build Deep Tech startups.[2]

They enable entrepreneurial scientists to launch, prove, build, and scale Deep Tech innovations from Singapore for the world. They passionately believe that Singapore has the resources and capabilities to 'tackle hard problems' that matter to people globally.[1]

Deep Tech Nexus strategy[edit]

SGInnovate's Deep Tech Nexus strategy [3] was launched in 2017 and highlights their sharp focus on transformational technologies such as Artificial Intelligence (AI), Autonomous Technologies, Quantum Technology, and Robotics that have horizontal applications to many industries, as well as MedTech which impacts healthcare solutions worldwide. Through this strategy, they are committed to add tangible value to the Singapore Deep Tech startup ecosystem in two key areas – developing Human Capital and deploying Investment Capital.[1]

SGInnovate's Investments[edit]

SGInnovate's investment philosophy is based on their belief that difficult problems can be solved using Deep Tech. They define Deep Tech as technology that is expressed in engineering and applied commercially. They target capable founders and startups using Deep Tech to address global problems.[4]

In December 2017, SGInnovate announced that it had appointed 17 co-investors under the Startup SG Equity scheme. They would be collectively be identifying and co-investing with SGInnovate in early-stage Deep Tech startups in areas prioritised in Singapore's Research, Innovation and Enterprise 2020 Plan or RIE2020, such as Artificial Intelligence. SGInnovate would manage a portion of the fund under this scheme, which is aimed at accelerating the growth of Deep Tech startups. The total value for investments that would be made alongside these co-investors could potentially reach up to S$80 million over the next four years. Apart from the injection of capital that would fuel the startups’ development and expansion efforts, they would also benefit from the strategic and management guidance provided by SGInnovate and the co-investors.[5]

In April 2019, SGInnovate announced that it had appointed five additional co-investors under the Startup SG Equity scheme. They are Elev8.VC, Golden Gate Ventures (together with their dedicated blockchain fund, LuneX Ventures), GREE Ventures, ST Engineering Ventures and Verge Capital Management. They were selected through a stringent process based on their investment track record, financial strength, management team capabilities as well as adequacy of facilities and resources.[6][7][8][9][10][11][12]

To build a database of Deep Tech talent, SGInnovate works closely with universities, polytechnics, Entrepreneur First (EF) and the Singapore-MIT Alliance for Research and Technology (SMART).[1]

SGInnovate Summation programme[edit]

The SGInnovate Summation Programme is an apprenticeship programme that places students within high-potential Deep Tech startups, allowing them to gain real-world experience in areas such as Artificial Intelligence, Blockchain, Cybersecurity, Robotics, and Quantum Computing. The first run of the Programme started in March 2018, with 23 students. The third run which begun March 2019 saw over 100 applications submitted by students. The fourth run of the Programme will begin in December 2019 and features 25 Deep Tech organisations and 30 Deep Tech projects.[13]

SGInnovate works with various industry partners like the Asia Regulatory Professional Association, Kingsland School of Blockchain, Ngee Ann Polytechnic, NUS-ISS, NVIDIA, and Red Dragon AI to " build Deep Tech talent through world-class learning opportunities". Deep Tech workshops are conducted in various Deep Tech areas such as Artificial Intelligence, Blockchain, Cybersecurity, and MedTech.[14]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d "Press Releases". SGInnovate. Retrieved 2019-08-22.
  2. ^ "Helping founders launch, prove and scale deep tech products borne out of science research". SGInnovate. 2017-11-20. Retrieved 2019-08-22.
  3. ^ "SGInnovate Unveils 'Deep Tech Nexus' Strategy to Further Strengthen Deep Tech Startup Ecosystem in Singapore". SGInnovate. 2017-12-01. Retrieved 2019-08-22.
  4. ^ "Investments". SGInnovate. 2018-05-30. Retrieved 2019-08-22.
  5. ^ "SGInnovate Appoints 17 Co-investors to Boost Private Investment into Early-Stage Deep Tech Startups". SGInnovate. 2017-12-13. Retrieved 2019-08-22.
  6. ^ "SGInnovate Adds Five Partners to Panel of Co-Investors for Deep Tech Startups". SGInnovate. 2019-07-02. Retrieved 2019-08-22.
  7. ^ "SGInnovate backs three deep tech startups, partners with local top universities". e27. November 23, 2018.
  8. ^ Nguyen, Quynh (April 14, 2019). "Singapore-based AIDA raises Series A from Mastercard, SGInnovate, others". Dealstreetasia.
  9. ^ "Singapore restaurant solutions startup TabSquare raises S$10m in Series B funding". Business Times (Singapore). October 10, 2018.
  10. ^ "Singapore-based AI company Taiger closes US$5.87mil Series A Round". Digital News Asia. August 24, 2017.
  11. ^ "Singapore-based creative AI platform bags $1.1m in seed funding". Tech in Asia. May 8, 2019.
  12. ^ "Investment Update: Expanding Our Portfolio with Nine Deep Tech Startups". SGInnovate. 2019-05-08. Retrieved 2019-08-22.
  13. ^ "Apprenticeship with Singapore's high potential deep tech companies". SGInnovate. 2017-12-01. Retrieved 2019-08-28.
  14. ^ "Talent Development". SGInnovate. Retrieved 2019-08-28.

External links[edit]