DOST bares additional funds for 20 more start-up incubators

By Edd K. Usman

CEBU CITY — The Department of Science and Technology (DOST) has announced additional funding for 20 more technology business incubators from 2018 to 2019.

DOST's de la Peña discusses the vital role of the government's Technology Business Incubator (TBI) Program as vehicle for supporting startups to create more opportunities. (EKU)

DOST secretary Fortunato de la Peña (left) discusses the vital role of the government’s Technology Business Incubator (TBI) program as vehicle for supporting startups to create more opportunities

The program assists these incubators which help startups and entrepreneurs, giving the incubators a grant in aid of P10 million each, with DOST providing startups with up to P5 million funding, plus space, facilities, and services, officials said. These services include management, mentoring, training, marketing, networking, intellectual property strategy, and protection.

With the 20 new incubators, DOST is hoping for 1,000 more new startups and entrepreneurs in three years time.

Currently, the agency has 16 incubators and plans to roll out 20 more, said Russell Pili, chief of the technology transfer division of the Philippine Council for Industry, Energy and Emerging Technology Research and Development (PCIEERD).

Pili was in Cebu to participate in the the first Philippine Technology Business Incubator (TBI) Summit held last November 24, which gathered incubators, other government agencies, private incubators, researchers, and even incubation leaders from Malaysia.

By increasing the number of incubators, there will be more entrepreneurs, more startups, more jobs, more businesses and, in the long run, have an impact on national economic development, Pili said.

“We want to incubate or provide a supportive environment for budding entrepreneurs; we want to give them a home in that point in their journey that they cannot afford to rent an office space,” she said.

During her presentation, Pili explained that the agency’s incubator program is a “policy intervention” that falls under the Science, Technology and Industry Chapter of the Philippines’ Medium-Term Development Plan.

The initiative also is subsumed under the the Philippine National Innovation Strategy called “Filipinnovation,” which focuses on four strategic areas:

• Strengthening human capital;
• Supporting business incubation and acceleration efforts;
• Regenerating the policy environment for innovation, and;
• Upgrading the Filipino mindset towards a culture of innovation.

For his part, DOST secretary Fortunato de la Peña reiterated what President (Rodrigo Duterte) has been saying all along, “we have to create more opportunities.” “What’s good about this (TBI) is it does not have to be in the traditional urban centers,” he said.

He also advised startups and entrepreneurs that starting a business requires full time attention in order to create a unique and innovative product or service.

Dr. Carlos Primo David, executive director of the PCIEERD, that the agency already secured funding for the 20 incubators to be established by the DOST in two years (2018-2019). “We secured the funding for that, P100 million in 2018, and P100 million in 2019,” he said.

Comment on this post