Mustapa urges more funds for technology startups, scale ups

InternatIonal Trade and Industry (MITI) Minister Datuk Seri Mustapa Mohamed has urged government-linked companies (GLCs) and private venture capitalists to allocate more funds for local technology startups and scale-ups.

He said Malaysia has a lot of capable and innovative startups and scale-ups that badly need funds, but the lack of promotion and marketing activities curb their potential for growth.

“We have quite a number of unpolished gems. So, the value proposition is to match them with venture capitalists, so that they are aware of opportunities (for funds).

“What we need to do is bring together people with the money and people who need it,” he told reporters on the sidelines of the Pitching Session for Local Technology Startups and Scale-ups yesterday.

Mustapa hoped the pitching platform would encourage more GLCs and venture capitalists to participate in an environment that is now dominated by government entities such as Khazanah Nasional Bhd, Malaysia Venture Capital Management Bhd and others.

He said although there are many sovereign funds in the country, some are prevented from investing in startups and scale-ups such as the Retirement Fund Inc and Armed Forces Fund Board.

“We want to encourage the digital economy and e-commerce. (Therefore) we need to change the balance (between government fund and private fund), now at 70:30 (government fund:private fund). Our aspiration is to reverse this,” he added.

Currently, there are over 400 start-ups and scale-ups, most of which are primarily grouped as digital economy components. — Bernama