Startup Bangladesh Ltd. signified the birth centennial of Father of the nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and the Golden Jubilee of Bangladesh by investing Tk. 100 crore for 50 startups for the current (2021) year.
Marking the occasions, Startup Bangladesh Ltd. at a programme at ICT Division at Agargaon in the capital on Wednesday (March 31, 2021) launched "ShotoBorshe Shoto Asha" to invest Tk. 15 crore for seven startups as part of its first series of investments.
Startup Bangladesh Limited is the flagship venture capital fund of the ICT Ministry.
Under the visionary guidance of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, Startup Bangladesh - the first and only venture capital fund sponsored by the Bangladesh government, started its journey in March, 2020 with an allocated capital of Tk. 500 crores.
The seven startups that today received Tk. 15 crore ( 1.75 million) as part of first series of the investments are Pathao (ride-sharing/logistics), Dhaka Cast (health-tech), Moner Bondhu (mental health and Wellbeing), Chaldal ( e-commerce), Eduhive (education-tech), Sheba.xyz (domestic services and SME) and Intelligent Machines (software services).
The event was told that the startups received this fund to scale up their production, improve the quality of goods and services and develop the supply chain & marketing strategies.
Zunaid Ahmed Palak MP, State Minister of the ICT Division, was present as chief guest at the event.
Mohibul Hasan Chowdhury MP, Deputy Minister of Education, and Principal Coordinator, SDG Affairs, Prime Minister’s Office Zuena Aziz were special guests.
N M Zeaul Alam PAA, Senior Secretary, ICT Division and Chairman, board of directors of Startup Bangladesh Ltd., was the guest of honour.
Zunaid Ahmed Palak officially launched the "ShotoBorshe Shoto Asha” and declared the investment of this venture capital fund.
Through this initiative, he said, the government created a national entrepreneurship platform to support the startup ecosystem.
“Startups could play a crucial role in addressing the market needs, which will serve as the foundation for far-reaching consequences in the GDP’s overall growth. The tech-solutions provided by startups could support the nation’s achieving Sustainable Development Goals by 2030,” said Palak.
Senior Secretary, ICT Division and Chairman, board of directors of Startup Bangladesh Ltd., N M Zeaul Alam PAA, commented that the organization would develop the entrepreneurial ecosystem and connect entrepreneurs and startups to foster collaboration with all the stakeholders.
Speaking as a guest speaker, Ki-Hak Sung, Chairman, and CEO at Youngone Corp, said, “I have been associated with Bangladesh for the past 36 years and am excited to be in this growth journey ahead”. The company is eyeing to invest USD 1 Billion over the next few years in Bangladesh.
In his address, Chris Burry, the Co CEO of US Market Access Inc., wished for Startup Bangladesh Limited all the success in the coming days.
Mustafa Usman Turan, Turkish Ambassador to Bangladesh, said his country is keen to develop partnerships in the information technology (IT) and e-commerce sectors of Bangladesh.
Tina F. Jabeen, Managing Director & CEO, Startup Bangladesh Ltd, said, “Among all frontier markets, Bangladesh holds the most promising opportunity for venture capital and private equity investments.