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Winning with corporate intelligence

Winning with corporate intelligence

With the new SG:D TechBlazer Awards upon us, we find out what it’s like to win a national accolade for innovation.

TechBlazer Awards 2018
Screenshot from the Handshakes website.
Minister S. Iswaran
The TechBlazer Awards is open for nominations until 17 August 2018.

By Billy Teo 

Calling all tech companies in Singapore: There’s a new award in town to recognise your innovation!

The SG:D TechBlazer Awards, formed by the merger of the National Infocomm Awards (NIA) and the SiTF Awards, will be the national accolade for tech innovation for organisations and companies based here. The nomination period runs from now until 17 August 2018, and winners will be announced in November.

But what is it really like to win a national innovation award? What’s in it for tech companies to participate?

IMpact spoke to Mr Daryl Neo, co-founder of DC Frontiers, the company behind the Handshakes app – which won the Most Innovative Infocomm Product at NIA 2016 – to find out.

Handshakes offers a platform that provides corporate intelligence solutions for conducting due diligence and research on companies. The company’s key technologies cover natural language processing, data analytics and data visualisation.

What was it like to go through the selection rounds and make it into the finals?

It was daunting for us, as the NIA was way bigger than a start-up competition. We had to compete against companies of all sizes, including giants like the telcos and banks!

What did the win mean for your company?

It was a big milestone for us, as it meant that our team could compete and do well against the best in Singapore.

The credential of having won the nation’s highest innovation award gave our clients more assurance about us and our products. The award definitely opened more doors for us. 

Handshakes team
Mr Daryl Neo (2nd from left) with his Handshakes colleagues at EmTech Asia 2017. (Photo: Handshakes Facebook)

How has it been for DC Frontiers since the NIA win?

Since then, we’ve also won the Gold Award in the SiTF Awards 2017 in the artificial intelligence category. We were also recognised with the Most Innovative Business Idea in ASEAN Awardat the recent India-ASEAN Summit in 2018.

We’ve been able to expand within the region more quickly too, as foreign companies now see us as a choice partner to work with. For example, we are now collaborating with a Chinese firm, SocialCredits, on a new cross-border business information portal. It is a showcase project under the Chongqing Connectivity Initiative.

What would you say to companies that are wondering if they should try for the new TechBlazer Awards?

It will be a tough but worthwhile journey. You will certainly benefit from the experience. For example, regardless of the final outcome, in answering the questions from the judges, you will get more clarity for your product and business.

So joining the awards will benefit your business. Go for it!

Find out more about the SG:D TechBlazer Awards here: 

Photo credits:
1. Photos of the DC Frontiers team including the teaser image courtesy of DC Frontiers.


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