DOST planning body allots P30-M for ‘better’ startups grant

– The Department of Science and Technology – Philippine Council for Industry, Energy and Emerging Technology Research and Development (DOST-PCIEERD) will allot an initial PHP30 million for the recently-launched Startup Grant Fund Program, an official said on Tuesday.

“We are putting out PHP30 million initially from PCIEERD. Additional support will come from the DOST-GIA (Grants-In-Aid program),” PCIEERD executive director Enrico Paringit told the Philippine News Agency (PNA).

While PCIEERD has been supporting startup companies through the DOST’s various programs, Paringit said the Startup Grant Fund Program that was launched last week is “better” as this was in line with Republic Act 11337 or the Innovative Startup Act that seeks to provide benefits and programs to further develop startups and startup enablers in the country.

“The Startup Grant will allow (us) to provide interventions in the different phases of startups. Also, we (will be) prioritizing proposals that focus on jumpstarting the economy in the ‘new normal’,” Paringit said.

Priority areas, he said, are startup solutions for sustainable industries; digitally-enhanced supply chain or logistics management; digital learning platforms; work from home productivity tools; content of talent development for the creative industries; and digitally-empowered tools for public service.

Paringit said the number of projects they could accommodate would depend on the proposed budgets of startups.

“We are still deciding if we are going to set a budget cap. If the cap, for example, is PHP5 million for each project, then only six startups can be supported,” he said.

He also said PCIEERD is allotting grant, a “heavy responsibility” would be expected from the startup firms.

“They will be asked to refund (the grant) if they do not fulfill their commitment,” he said.

The PCIEERD said it will start accepting proposals from Dec. 2, 2020 until Feb. 1, 2021. More information may be viewed at dpmis.dost.gov.ph.

“We advise (those who would like to avail of the grant) to get in touch with the Technology Business Incubators (TBIs) that we established across the country, to help them craft a good proposal,” Paringit said.

He added that there are 33 TBIs in the country, to serve as mentors and support facility for startups.

Source: Philippines News agency

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