The Garage+ "Startup Global Program (SGP)" 2023 Spring Batch has received a record high of 66 applications from Canada, ranking first among 37 applicant countries. The SGP, supported by the Epoch Foundation, has been recognized as a leading platform for worldwide startups to explore business opportunities in Taiwan. The program provides a range of services, including mentoring, networking, fundraising, and enabling startups to access global supply chain resources by Taiwan industries.
The Epoch Foundation said that the SGP receives so many Canadian start-up applications this year, which is attributed to the efforts of the Canadian Technology Accelerator (CTA) in Taiwan over the years. The CTA supports Canadian deep-tech companies to explore opportunities to grow their business in 15 global tech hubs. This initiative is the largest single commercial project funded by Global Affairs Canada in Taiwan to date. Since 2018, CTA has been cooperating with the Epoch Foundation Garage+ to assist Canadian start-ups in developing business with Taiwan industries and has achieved successful results. This collaboration has helped to create a conducive environment for Canadian companies to thrive.
In addition, on November 27, 2022, the Government of Canada announced its Indo-Pacific Strategy: a comprehensive and ambitious whole-of-government plan setting the stage for Canada's long-term engagement in the region for the next decade. Taiwan is a key player in this dynamic and rapidly growing part of the world, and a significant link in the global supply chain. Under the Indo-Pacific Strategy, the CTA will further strengthen its collaboration with top-tier program delivery partners, such as Epoch Foundation, to connect the accepted cohort companies with local Taiwanese industry networks for business or research partnerships.
In the past, Garage+ "Startup Global Program" arranged more than 500 one-on-one meetings per year, and more than 60 Taiwanese heavyweights like TSMC, Wistron, Quanta Computer, Delta Electronics, Pegatron, Cathay Venture, and CDIB Capital Group participated in the meetings in 2022. This batch, Garage+ plans to select 20 high-tech-driven start-up teams to Taiwan to attend the Computex exhibition and meet up with the C-level executives. Through business matchmaking, start-ups can effectively connect with Taiwanese industries and jointly seek business opportunities for future collaboration.
From 2015 onward, with the support of the National Development Council and Asia Silicon Valley Development Agency, SGP has been recognized widely by startups worldwide. Past events have accumulated over 2,100 applications and selected 244 start-ups to come to Taiwan. One-third of them have successfully obtained manufacturing or investment agreements and returned to Taiwan to set up branches or offices.
With the mission of facilitating industrial development and economic prosperity in Taiwan, Epoch Foundation has been representing 20 Taiwan-based blue-chip companies, closely allying with the world's renowned academic institutions such as MIT and UC Berkeley over the past 30 years. With strong international connections, Epoch also serves as the liaison office to bridge and consolidate industrial resources. In 2003, the Foundation initiated the educational program "Epoch School - Young Entrepreneurs of the Future" to incubate entrepreneurship and innovation among young talents. In 2008, it founded Garage+ with a mission to support an altruism-driven technology start-up to better the world. Up to 2022, more than 476 startups (including 244 international teams) have been participating in Garage+. A whopping 75% of startups have raised funding.