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Singapore Startups Kick Ass Overseas, Gets Ignored At Home As Usual

CTO Navin Kumar mans the SocialWok booth at TechCrunch50 Conference 2009.

CTO Navin Kumar mans the SocialWok booth at TechCrunch50 Conference 2009.

Last week, Singapore’s startup scene witnessed an amazing success streak:

iTwin became the first-ever Singapore startup on 14 September to demo at TechCrunch50 Conference 2009, the massive showcase of the latest cutting-edge technology startups in San Francisco.

– Likewise, another Singapore startup Socialwok emerged as a Demopit winner at the same conference the very next day. (You can find out more about SocialWok at our interview with CEO Yong Ming Guang here.)

TechCrunch50 Conference 2009 - A showcase of technology startups.

TechCrunch50 Conference 2009 - A showcase of technology startups.

TechCrunch50 Conference 2009 was hugely covered by the US and international press, such as CNET, Forbes, Wired, BusinessWeek, Fortune, The Huffington Post, Reuters, Fast Company and Bloomberg TV.

The Singapore press? Nary a whimper. As usual, Singapore startups get no love from the local media.

Mohan Belani, director of consumer web and mobile community e27, recently bemoaned the lack of exposure for Singapore startups – one of the points I brought up when I highlighted the lack of a support ecosystem for our local startups.

If things don’t change, our startups will start to wither on the stalk here despite the acclaim they get overseas. And they’ll start leaving by the droves, despite whatever carrots the local government agencies dangle in their faces.

C’mon folks – it’s ridiculous that we put aside $25 million Entrepreneurial Talent Development Fund (ETDF) to look for and seed new startups, yet cannot give any love to those who ARE ALREADY IN THE GAME.

PS: The same evening iTwin demo-ed at TC50 2009, Singapore-based Pechora Technologies with their award-winning web-cam solution HomeCamera, bagged the Innovation Award at the Broadband World Forum 2009. They were the only winner from South-east Asia.

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Daniel Goh is the founder and chief editor of Young | Upstarts, as well as an F&B entrepreneur. Daniel has a background in public relations, and is interested in issues in entrepreneurship, small business, marketing, public relations and the online space. He can be reached at daniel [at] youngupstarts [dot] com.

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