Demo Day: The Innovators 5 event to be launched virtually on August 10, helping innovation grow amidst pandemic

Sandy Du, DIGITIMES, Taipei 0

This year marks the fifth Demo Day: The Innovators event, which has helped startups in Taiwan grow and prosper. This year's event will be held by the NTPC-AWS Joint Innovation Center in association with New Taipei InnoSquare. The two organizations have come together to form what is arguably Taiwan's most significant startup accelerator. A total of 19 teams are showcasing their innovative and commercialized solutions this time, covering five major areas: smart healthcare, smart finance, smart manufacturing, smart education, and smart living to jointly demonstrate the future of Taiwan's new innovative technologies.

Besides product pitches from startup teams, special panel discussions and keynote speeches will also take place during this event. Changing consumer habits during the pandemic have given rise to unexpected startup business opportunities. To further explore this, a panel discussion will be led by FCC Partners president CY Huang, along with Medzoneasia CEO Hung-Jen Yang, and ShareHope Medicine vice president Vincent Ho, which will focus on the "Strategic Location and Value of Startup Companies" by examining the digital transformation process of electronic medical service companies to explore the future of innovative medical services. For the keynote speeches, New Deantronics and Good Way Technology have been invited to share their perspectives. New Deantronics, famous for its medical electric scalpel, will be giving a keynote presentation on "COVID-19 Global Trends and What They Mean for Startups in Taiwan." Good Way Technology will focus on "Digitization: Case Studies and Challenges of Large-Scale Network Device Deployment."

The 2020 COVID-19 pandemic has not only accelerated the digital transformation of various industries but has notably attracted global attention to Taiwanese medical industries' potential. For the panel discussion, the "Strategic Location and Value of Startup Companies," Medzoneasia CEO Hung-Jen Yang will use the series of transformations that the Missioncare Group has undertaken as an example to illustrate how innovative technology has cut into the foundation of the healthcare industry in light of recent changes in the medical, health, wellness, and preventive medicine markets.

With an aging society and COVID-19 looming on the horizon, demand for pharmaceuticals, healthcare products, and telemedicine has increased dramatically. Hospitals are no longer the only way to obtain drugs as medical e-commerce, drug stores, and retail health services are on the rise. Vincent Ho, vice president of ShareHope Medicine, will also share how his team integrated emerging 5G technology, the Internet of Things (IoT), cloud computing, AI, and big data analysis to increase diagnostic efficiency, as well as how they overcame the difficulties they encountered in the process. And as these new medical innovation and data integration tools were implemented, every part of Missioncare Group's health ecosystem has also become more reliable and irreplaceable.

AWS Joint Innovation Center has helped 70 startups: 50% of them have received funding

The New Taipei City-AWS Joint Innovation Center was founded from the joint investment of the New Taipei City Government, Amazon Web Services (AWS), and FCC Partners, with the goal of creating a first-class startup accelerator in Taiwan. The center has since become a shining example of private and public sector collaboration to promote innovation. By combining the efforts of industries, the government, academia, research organizations, and corporate groups, the center seeks to introduce international cloud services, empower venture capital funds, and link industry counseling resources together to create a comprehensive ecosystem to facilitate new startups. Since the center's inception in 2018, a total of 70 technology startups have been successfully incubated, of which more than 47% have acquired funding, accumulating a total investment of more than NT$600 million (US$21.59 million), with eight companies even receiving venture aid from the Business Angel Investment Program from the Executive Yuan's National Development Fund. The vision of the NTPC-AWS Joint Innovation Center is to nurture cloud talent, accelerate the growth of Taiwan's new startups, help teams break into the global stage, and support the upgrade and transformation of local industries to export more successful Taiwanese models.

New Taipei City deputy mayor Ho-Jan Liu said that the New Taipei City government is fully committed to startup incubation and digital transformation. Besides playing a part in the establishment of the NTPC-AWS Joint Innovation Center, New Taipei City InnoSquare is also the first accelerator program to be established by a local government in Taiwan. The New Taipei City government will continue to help match startups with willing corporate partners so that new startups can obtain resources from established enterprises, while enterprises can benefit from accelerated digital transformation through their startup partners, creating a win-win situation. This year, the NTPC-AWS Joint Innovation Center is working with New Taipei InnoSquare to help startup teams with investment and industry partner matchmaking. Through a comprehensive entrepreneurial counseling program that encompasses the team, mentor training, community relations management, local industry resources in New Taipei City and capital matching, the center wants to accelerate the marketization, scaling, and internationalization of creative ideas to better convert them into market value in a shorter period of time. Since the center was established in 2014, a total of 205 startup teams have successfully finished the program, of which 55 teams even attained international recognition and successfully acquired a total venture capital investment of over NT$320 million.

CY Huang, president of FCC Partners, pointed out that Taiwan's industrial goals are still heavily focused on real economy, manufacturing, and OEM. However, the capital market of the future will be much more knowledge-oriented and eco-based. Taiwan is currently at a critical juncture of its industrial transformation. Enterprises need to transition from traditional to new economic models through complete cross-border integration, infrastructure transformation and upgrading, internationalization, and the establishment of new platforms. A new vision and a more forward-thinking spirit are needed to create a more active new economic ecosystem. This process relies on the constant injection of new ideas provided by innovative technology.

The 19 startup teams featured for the pitch presentations are: Virtualman, Avalanche Computing Taiwan, Smart Tag, Earthbook, Tripresso Travel Service, Veyond, Mind & Idea Fly, dentall, Gogoout, MyProGuide, UpperMed Medical Device, ID Cloud Technology, ClothesTelling, aiseed, Lichenads, AllGo Automotive, TUTEEMI, iEstate, and Know-Ya Edu. The ideas and technologies presented by these teams are not only forward-looking and innovative, but are also heralds for the next-generation way of living.

Demo Day: The Innovators 5 is following community epidemic prevention measures, marking this year's event as the first in the series to be held as a full virtual exhibition. The event will be broadcast live online with an accompanying online exhibition hall set up for the participating teams to showcase Taiwan's innovative strength to the world. In addition to a "Best New Innovation Award" winner selected by a group of judges during the event, an "Audience Choice Award" winner will also be chosen by the audience during the live broadcast. Audience members who vote during the event will be eligible to participate in a raffle to win a small gift. The event will be held on August 10 from 1:30 PM to 5:00 PM. Register for free on the website. To learn more about the teams or the event, visit Facebook: NTPC-AWS Joint Innovation Center.

Demo Day

Demo Day
Photo: NTPC-AWS Joint Innovation Center