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SPRING Singapore commits $72.9m to develop deep tech startups, seeks co-investors

SPRING Seeds Capital (SSC), the investment arm of SPRING Singapore, has committed up to $72.9 million to develop high-potential startup ventures

As part of this move, it is seeking co-investment partners to participate in funding Singapore-based deep technology startups, which are ventures whose business models are built around proprietary technologies, research or hardware. These co-investment partners can be either local or foreign entities with Singapore-based operations.

The capital that SSC has put aside for the programme will be matched by private capital raised by these partners. The investments under this scheme will concentrate on ventures involved in domains such as advanced manufacturing and engineering (AME), health and biomedical sciences (HBMS), and urban solutions and sustainability (USS).

These are spheres identified by the Singapore government for its research, innovation and enterprise 2020 (RIE2020) plan. Last year, SSC launched a similar initiative, partnering with accelerators, and investors in May 2016 to assist emerging “deep tech” startups to grow.

In an official statement, SPRING Singapore said, “The sectors identified have high potential for growth and offer many opportunities for start-ups. They also generate significant economic and social impact, such as productivity improvement through the use of innovative and disruptive technologies. As companies in deep tech sectors may need a longer runway for development and commercialisation, SPRING and the new co-investment partners will support and catalyse smart financing options for early-stage start-ups in these sectors.”

“Besides funding support, these partners must take a hands-on approach in helping early-stage start-ups fast-track commercialisation through mentorship and connect them to potential clients through their networks,” it adds.

Currently, SPRING provides a co-matching of 7:3 (up from 1:1 previously) for the first S$500,000 of co-investment amount, and, for matching partners, up to S$4 million per deep tech startup.

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