Dated: 31 October 2008
Singapore’s Interactive Digital Media (IDM) industry receives a boost with the Singapore infocomm Technology Federation (SiTF) –and its vast network of industry members - partnering the multi-agency IDM Research and Development Programme Office (IDMPO) hosted by the Media Development Authority on a mentorship programme to cultivate and develop IDM ideas and projects towards commercialisation.
Targeted at individuals and young start-ups, the mentorship programme takes a two-phase approach. Firstly, SiTF members will shortlist and select innovative IDM projects for grants of S$50,000 from IDMPO’s Microfunding scheme. With the grant, individuals and young start-ups will be able to advance their ideas to the ‘proof of concept’ stage, with a clear focus on technical or business merit and feasibility. At the same time, SiTF members will offer mentoring in the form of technological and business expertise.
In the second phase, SiTF will cultivate these ideas further into the project stage with the ultimate goal for commercialisation by establishing funding mechanisms through close collaboration with government bodies and the industry. The selected projects will also have the opportunity to be matched with SiTF’s vast network of members for further investment. Lead SiTF members like MediaCorp Pte Ltd, Microsoft, SingTel and ST Electronics (Training &Simulation Systems) have already expressed their interest in project domains such as interactive media, mobile digital media, broadcast, IPTV and open source development etc. SiTF will continue to market this program to gain greater interest from more corporations who see opportunity to partner with start ups. Through support from the industry, the mentorship programme hopes to make available up to $10m worth of project funding and support over a period of five years.
On the partnership with SiTF, Mr Michael Yap, Executive Director of IDMPO said: “We welcome the joining of SiTF in our effort to fuel innovation in the IDM space. We believe SiTF’s wide network of industry members would add to the vibrancy of our IDM ecosystem. We are exploring with companies such as MediaCorp Pte Ltd and ST Electronics to conduct joint calls for proposals.”
With SiTF, the IDMPO now has a network of 10 incubators to create support structures for the start-ups, including the platforms for regular pitching sessions and finding industry partners. Collectively, the incubators will nurture some 450 start-ups over the next few years. The existing incubators have facilitated the funding of some 90 projects to date, out of which 15 were completed. Thirty per cent of the completed projects have successfully received private investment.
“These are exciting times for players in the interactive digital media industry. Through the joint mentorship programme, SiTF aims to catalyse growth in the industry by enabling ideas to gain access to the right connections, guidance from industry experts and veterans, and obtain the necessary funding in order to ultimately develop into innovative products and services and bring them to market,” said Mr Ng Chong Khim, Chairman of SiTF’s Digitial Media Chapter.
To find out more about the joint Mentorship Programme, please contact Jacquie Khoo at Jacquie.email@example.com.
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Media Development Authority of Singapore (MDA)
The Media Development Authority of Singapore (MDA) was formed on 1 January 2003 to champion Media 21, a blueprint to transform Singapore into a global media city. Media 21 seeks to create a vibrant media environment by establishing Singapore as a media exchange, exporting Made-by-Singapore content, internationalising local media companies, nurturing local media talent and developing digital media. More information on MDA can be found on www.mda.gov.sg
Interactive &Digital Media (IDM) Sector
The development of the IDM sector requires the collaboration of a diverse range of public sector agencies, educational institutions, industry players and other stakeholders. To achieve this, the National Research Foundation has allocated $500 million over the next five years from 2006 to fund the development of a strategic IDM research programme and the set-up of a multi-agency IDM R&D Programme Office within the Media Development Authority of Singapore to oversee R&D initiatives in the IDM space. This multi-agency team is accountable to the IDM Executive Committee and coordinates a cross-disciplinary effort to deepen Singapore’s research capacity in IDM. Please visit www.idm.sg for more information.
Singapore infocomm Technology Federation (SiTF) is Singapore’s premier infocomm industry association. It brings together 400 corporate members from MNCs and local companies. The main charter of the federation is to assist its members in business development, market intelligence, overseas trade missions, networking and alliances.
The eight chapters under SiTF are: Best Sourcing, Digital Media, eGovernment, eLearning, Security &Governance, Singapore Enterprise, Service-Oriented Architecture and Wireless. Besides working closely with government and foreign agencies, SiTF is also a member of the World Information Technology and Services Alliance (WITSA), Asian-Oceania Computing Industry Organisation (ASOCIO) and Asia Pacific ICT Alliance (APICTA). SiTF also manages the Infocomm Singapore Centre (ISC) in China (Shanghai and Hangzhou) to give local infocomm companies a foothold in Greater China.
SiTF organises several Singapore’s key infocomm events - SiTF Golf Classic, iX Conference, SITEX, and administers the ‘Infocomm Singapore’ brand initiative. For more information on SiTF, please visit www.sitf.org.sg
The National Research Foundation (NRF)
The National Research Foundation (NRF), a department under the Prime Minister's Office, sets the national direction for research and development (R&D) by developing policies, plans and strategies for research, innovation and enterprise, funds strategic initiatives, builds up R&D capabilities and capacities through nurturing our own and attracting foreign talent, and coordinates the research agenda of different agencies to transform Singapore into a knowledge-intensive, innovative and entrepreneurial economy. It provides secretariat support to the Research, Innovation and Enterprise Council (RIEC), chaired by the Prime Minister. A five-year budget of S$5 billion has been allocated to the NRF in 2006 to achieve this mission. For more information, please visit www.nrf.gov.sg.