Record Number of Submissions for Techblazer Awards 2020, Singapore’s Highest Accolade for Digital Innovation

Last updated: 28 January 2021

Published on: 28 January 2021

  • 11 organisations recognised for their innovation and digital transformation efforts
  • IMDA to spur faster commercialisation of digital innovation with new Tech Acceleration Lab pilot

SINGAPORE – 27 January 2021: Eleven organisations were recognised as Singapore’s most innovative at the SG:D Techblazer Awards 2020, jointly organised by the Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA) and SGTech. These digital innovators received their awards from the Minister for Communications and Information, Mr S Iswaran, at an awards ceremony on Wednesday.

Now in its third year, the SG:D Techblazer Awards is the nation’s highest accolade for tech innovation. The 2020 Awards saw more than 400 nominations, up from the previous 304 submissions in 2019. Seven companies and four student organisations emerged as winners in three categories – Most Promising Innovation, Best Adoption and Student Techblazer.

Artificial intelligence was a common theme with the winners finding novel ways to apply AI and deep learning across a range of fields, from biotech to human resource.

Biotechnology company, Hummingbird Bioscience, clinched the Gold award in the Most Promising Innovation category for its predictive drug discovery platform that allows for more accurate predictions on drug performance and development.

Students from the National University of Singapore won the Gold award in the Student Techblazer category for their robot programming platform, Augmentus. The platform allows anyone, even those without programming skills to deploy robotic systems, lowering the investment and skill barrier for businesses to implement such systems.

Meanwhile, the transformative impact of technology was on full display in Hong Ye Group’s win in the Best Adoption (SME) category. Through the adoption of its Smart iClean app, which enabled better data collection, and project management, the Group was able to improve the effectiveness of its cleaning staff by 20%. For more information on the winners and their winning solutions, please see Annex A.

"For Singapore to recover from the effects of the pandemic, organisations must transform to elevate ourselves to a different level. It is heartening to see a large number of new ideas in the Techblazer Awards, with individuals and organisations applying technology to innovative ideas to solve big problems," said Wong Wai Meng, Chairman of SGTech.

Continuing efforts to build up Singapore’s innovation ecosystem

In his speech at the awards, Minister Iswaran announced new programmes to support Singapore’s digital innovators.

By providing a controlled sandbox and testing environment, IMDA’s Tech Acceleration Lab (TAL) pilot helps companies shorten the development cycle for their proof-of-concept (PoC) solutions. Preconfigured with requirements from agencies, this sandbox can allow Singapore ICT companies to test and deploy their PoCs solutions in as quickly as two months, compared to the typical 6 to 9-month deployment period for government projects. In speeding up the development and adoption cycle, IMDA aims to spur the commercialisation of digital tech solutions, and reduce overall lead time for government innovation projects.

The pilot is currently conducted with companies working on government projects under IMDA’s Accreditation@SGD and SGD Spark programmes. IMDA will explore expanding TAL’s support to the wider tech sector in 3Q 2021.

Meanwhile, tech companies and solutions providers can also look out for more opportunities to solve real business problems with the launch of IMDA’s 9th Innovation Call for its Open Innovation Platform (OIP) on 3 February 2021. This innovation call gathers more than ten problem statements from across industry sectors. To date, OIP has played a key role in facilitating innovation projects, hosting more than 180 challenges and matching solution providers with companies with business needs. Tech companies and solutions providers interested to know more about the problem statements, can visit www.openinnovation.sg for more information.

Mr Howie Lau, Assistant Chief Executive, Media & Innovation Group, IMDA said, “The keen interest and high quality of competition in Techblazer 2020, despite the challenges faced amid the pandemic, is testament to the innovativeness and resilience of Singapore’s tech sector. To help our digital innovators,  we are making available a new rapid testing environment – the Tech Acceleration Lab – which will eliminate the need to set up their own testing environment, shortening the lead time for proof of concept development and helping them close more projects.”

Related Resources

Annex A: Write-ups of SG:D Techblazer Award Winners (524.04KB)

Annex B: SG:D Techblazer Awards overview and categories (144.28KB) 

Annex C: Tech Acceleration Lab factsheet (171.13KB)


ISSUED BY THE INFOCOMM MEDIA DEVELOPMENT AUTHORITY


About Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA)

The Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA) leads Singapore’s digital transformation with infocomm media. To do this, IMDA will develop a dynamic digital economy and a cohesive digital society, driven by an exceptional infocomm media (ICM) ecosystem – by developing talent, strengthening business capabilities, and enhancing Singapore's ICM infrastructure. IMDA also regulates the telecommunications and media sectors to safeguard consumer interests while fostering a pro-business environment, and enhances Singapore’s data protection regime through the Personal Data Protection Commission.

For more news and information, visit www.imda.gov.sg or follow IMDA on Facebook IMDAsg and Twitter @IMDAsg.

About SGTech

SGTech is a premier trade association for the tech industry in Singapore that strives to create an ecosystem which anticipates trends and develops sustainable initiatives to strengthen and help the industry. SGTech’s close to 1000 members range from start-ups, SMEs, to MNCs that leverage technology as a core driver for business. The two fundamental value propositions of SGTech are:

- Advocate for Industry 
A voice that actively and responsibly advocates for change that benefits members and the industry

- Supports Singapore’s Agenda for Technology 
Contributes to the industry’s growth and transformation by supporting programmes and initiatives that enhance the Singaporean economy.

For more information, visit www.sgtech.org.sg


 

For media clarifications, please contact:

Patrick LIM (Mr)
Assistant Manager, Communications & Marketing, IMDA
DID: (65) 6202 4469
Email: Patrick_John_LIM@imda.gov.sg

Priscilla GAN (Ms)
Manager, Communications & Marketing, IMDA
DID: (65) 6202 4417
Email: Priscilla_Gan@imda.gov.sg