Techstars Startup Weekend (TSSW) Sustainability Selangor

Centred around action, innovation, and education, Techstars Startup Weekend (TSSW) Sustainability Selangor is a create and collaborative three-day educational event where anyone can develop and pitch new startup ideas. 

This three-day event took students through the process of preparing, refining, and pitching their startup ideas to a panel of established judges from various startup/entrepreneurial background. It took place at Taylor’s University Lakeside Campus from the 29 th to 31 st July 2022. 

The event was hosted physically from the campus, as well as online through ZOOM and Discord. This year’s TSSW focused on the vertical of sustainability, where students must align the foundation of their startup ideas with one of the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals.

This event aimed to promote entrepreneurship and build the entrepreneurial community in our city. Also, to build, strengthen, connect, and upskill students from different faculties and fields of study through superior experiential education. 

Guided by their mentors, the student teams at Techstars Startup Weekend Sustainability Selangor honing their pitching skills and making final adjustment on their presentation decks before showcasing their ideas before the panel of judges.

Furthermore, it is an opportunity for fresh ideas and innovations from students to come alive and develop into a viable business. Not to forget, to build an entrepreneurial community in a safe, innovative environment during the post COVID-19 pandemic and safety restrictions.

Mechanics

  • Students may participate as long as they have a rough business idea that they want to pursue. All teams must include 1 student currently studying in Taylor’s University.
  • The entirety of the event is 54 hours in total. Within these 54 hours, students will be exposed to insightful sessions with industry experts as their mentors. They will learn about pitching, business model creation, prototyping, designing and market validation for their startup ideas.
  • Mentors come in for two hours on the first and second day of TSSW to mentor them on business model development, market validation, guiding students to be on the right track. In summary, supporting students by showing them viable business model for students to develop their business.
  • In the first day, students are involved in selecting their mentors and undergo workshops focused on SDGs and business model canvas workshop hosted by experts in the industry.
  • In the second day, students will then undergo private mentorship sessions with their selected mentors, with one workshop focused on refining their pitching skills.
  • On the third and final day of TSSW, there was a pitching practice session guiding students on how to create a good pitch and present their ideas. Each team is allocated 3 minutes for the pitch with 10 presentation slides, mentors came in and advised on what can be included in a pitch, as well as how to tackle the Q& A sessions.
  • Students will then put what they have learnt to the test on the third day, where they will begin pitching their ideas to a panel of judges.
Guided by their mentors, the student teams at Techstars Startup Weekend Sustainability Selangor honing their pitching skills and making final adjustment on their presentation decks before showcasing their ideas before the panel of judges.

Prizes

The top 10 teams from TSSW are entitled to the following prizes and access to the various labs and facilities at Taylor’s University:

  • Total of RM100,000 Innovation Grant to be won for the top 10 teams, this grant will be divided between the 10 teams. Maximum allocation for a team will be RM10,000.
  • 2 years BizPod co-working space usage worth RM2500.
  • Computing lab access
  • Food lab access – 20 hours
  • Medical lab access – 20 hours
  • Design studio access
  • Photo studio access
  • Mentorship access – 20 hours
  • Bloomberg Terminal
  • Taylor’s Me.Reka Makerspace

Judging Criteria

  • Business Model – Scalability of business, marketing strategies in acquiring customers, revenue model, assessment on more room to continue scaling the business.
  • Customer validation – Teams to go out and engage with potential customers, using their findings to see if their idea is actually feasible or wanted by their target audiences.
  • Execution and design – Ascertaining how doable is the project. The team’s capacity to bring their project to life and execute it in the intended way. The ability to create a compelling and captivating user experience.
  • Sustainability – each team’s alignment with one of the Sustainable Development Goals.
  • Soft skills – Presentation skills, Q& A handling, body language.

As for the lineup of judges, includes Jessie Chong, Director of BizPod, Taylor’s University, Dato’ Dr Teh Tai Yong, Vice President, Persatuan Usahawan Maju Malaysia (PUMM), Associate Professor Dr Anthony Ho, Pro Vice-Chancellor – Research & Enterprise, Taylor’s University and Heislyc Loh, Founder, Devs Asia.

Mentors

  • Chris Cheong, Digital Marketing Professional, Visible Value Services
  • James Cunningham, Director of Sustainability and Business Development, Hybrid Apparel Company
  • Vincent Ng Cheng Leng, Product and business development Expert, IS Global Services Pte Ltd
  • Sze Jun King, CTO for Vincaps Capital Sdn Bhd
  • Vincent Kok, Chairman at Incite Foodtech
  • Raimi Aizat, Portfolio Manager, Cradle Fund
  • V-Ki Cheong, Founder, Digital Consultant of Ango Studio
  • Dato’ Jason Foo, Founder & Chairman of 81Group
  • Nor Aisah Hatta, Analyst, Grant Division Cradle Fund
  • Manmeet Kaur Gorchan Singh, Lecturer at the School of Management and Marketing, Taylor’s University
  • Nick Tan, Director, Qlic Solution Sdn Bhd
  • Jonathan Lau, Founder, German Educare
  • Mohd Atasha Alias, Chief Executive, FoxyMojo
  • Dr Jesrina Ann Xavier, Senior Lecturer, Faculty of Business and Law of Taylor’s University
  • Arlene Tan, Vice President of Malaysia Entrepreneurs’ Development Association (PUMM)
  • Michael Teoh, Founding CEO of Thriving Talents

Winning teams

There are top 10 wining teams in TSSW 2022, with one champion among the 10:

  • Team Zing! (CHAMPION): Zing! is a sparkling instant herbal canned beverage made with a blend of Southeast Asian ingredients and high-quality but underutilized local herbs. The vision is to create a healthier Malaysia by uncovering local herbs’ hidden potential.
  • Team Okashi: OKASHI is a soymilk frozen dessert, sandwiched between 2 cookies made with recycled okara and finally, coated in half of dark bittersweet chocolate, providing a balance of sweet, creamy, and nutty flavours altogether. It is high in protein, a source of dietary fiber, vegan friendly, gluten and lactose-free, suitable for Gen-Zs, out there to try.
  •  Team Rice & Shine: Rice & Shine Rice Bran Chips is deliciously coated with dark chocolate and sea salts, rich in fiber, and made from an upcycled ingredient featuring rice bran. Rice bran, the outer layer of rice grain, has untapped potential, containing most of the grain’s nutrients and is rich in dietary fiber and bioactive compounds.
  • Team Colyou: Colyou instant noodles, which contains high amount of collagen, intends to promote food security and lower food losses during production and consumption. Its goal is to support SDG2 (zero hunger) and SDG12 (responsible consumption and production) by using fish scales, a form of food waste, to create a ready-to-eat product.
  • Team 4Ever Go Big or Go Home: Healthcare in Malaysia has room for improvements and is still lacking in certain aspects such as convenience, long waiting times, and expensive private healthcare. H.A.I. (Healthcare Artificial Intelligence) will focus on Telemedicine with some additional features, and in the future, the project plans to include AI, to provide healthcare to everyone at anytime, anywhere.
  • Team i-CARE: This team intends to produce a 2-in-1 tracker, which functions as a location tracker and personal safety device. This product allows users to keep track of their belongings and loved ones’ location. It can ensure their safety at the same time as it comes with an emergency function, which is activated through sound recognition.
  • Team The Q’Bies: The Q’Bies aims to produce gummy products that are healthier and are the more nutritious alternative in the market, while meeting children’s demand for sweets. The Q’Bies products are vegan-friendly, rich in vitamin and easy to consume.
  • Team Ecotegrity: A textile wholesaler that aims to reduce textile wastes in Malaysia by recycling the textile waste into raw material and sell wholesale to local textiles manufacturers.
  • Team Extrash: This team intends to provide a seamless solution and encourage people torecycle by using its reward-based digital innovation through the Extrash mobile application. Furthermore, they also aim to foster an online community to raise awareness digitally in and effort to reach out to larger audiences.
  • Team Hexagro: This project proposes a plant fiber-based single use food packaging to replace non-biodegradable plastic packaging in the market to encourage people to reduce plastic usage unconsciously.

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