3 July 2019 – Department of Trade and Industry Undersecretary Rafaelita M. Aldaba and executives of Filipino startup enterprises spoke on the Philippine Startup Ecosystem during the Innovfest Unbound 2019, the annual event of Smart Nation Innovations. The conference was held at Sands Expo and Convention Centre, Singapore on 27-28 June 2019.
The Filipino startup executives comprised : (1) Ms. Joan Yao, Vice President of Kick Start Ventures, (2) Ms. Katrina Chan, Director of QBO, and (3) Mr. Ron Hose, Founder and CEO of Coins.Ph.
Undersecretary Aldaba stated that the Philippine startup ecosystem is relatively young but is full of potential and embedded capabilities. The startups, which are currently in the activation phase, comprise financial technology, enterprise solutions developers, artificial intelligence and machine learning companies. Usec. Aldaba cited low access to capital requirements, low early stage funding and regulatory requirements as some of the challenges encountered by startups in their thrust to globalize. Currently, the Philippines has at least 500 startups having a combined worth of US$378 million.
The Department of Information and Communications Technology, Department of Science and Technology, and the Department of Trade and Industry have a joint program called Start-up Pilipinas (formerly Start-up Ecosystem Development). The program supports startups by providing opportunities to participate in outbound business missions and international pitching competitions. In addition, a facility called the QBO Innovation Hub Project (a public private partnership of DTI, DOST, IdeaSpace and J.P.Morgan) provides an incubation hub for startups to learn, develop, modify and scale up their business models.
In addition to participating at the panel discussion, Usec. Aldaba also spoke on how Philippines is preparing for Industry 4.0 at the ISEAS Yusof Ishak Institute on 27 June 2019.