Intending to increase the knowledge and skills of startups in Bangladesh as well as develop a digital startup ecosystem, Bangladesh-South Korea is going to organise the ‘ideaTHON’ contest in a joint venture.
To this effect, an online inauguration ceremony was held on Saturday in the capital.
State Minister of ICT Division Mr. Zunaid Ahmed Palak MP inaugurated the contest as the chief guest. The event was presided over by the project director (Additional Secretary) of the iDEA Project Syed Mojibul Huq.
This contest is being organised by iDEA project of Bangladesh Computer Council (BCC) under the ICT Division with the slogan “Let’s Start You Up”.
The event is co-organised by the Korea Productivity Center (KPC) and the Korea Invention Promotion Association (KIPA). In addition, the ICT Division and the Bangladesh Computer Council of Bangladesh and the Ministry of Justice of South Korea and the Global Start-up Immigration Center of South Korea are partnering with the event.
The top five innovative startups will be announced as the winners at the end of the final selection of this contest.
The winners will receive six months of special training, incubation, funding and connecting support with VC companies in South Korea also with the international patents, copyright and trademark assistance. Besides, the best 25 teams will get special mentoring and certificates.
The iDEA project was established under the BCC of the ICT Division with the best guidance and inspiration of the Prime Minister's ICT Affairs Honorable Adviser Sajeeb Wazed.
Bangladesh Garments Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA) President Dr. Rubana Huq was present there as the Guest of Honour of the programme.
Senior secretary of ICT Division Mr. N M Zeaul Alam PAA, executive director of Bangladesh Computer Council (BCC) Mr. Parthapratim Deb, managing director of Startup Bangladesh Limited Tina F. Jabeen, among others, were present as the special guests on the occasion.
The registration for the ideaTHON contest started on September 19, 2020. Online campaigns will be organised in all divisions of the country. As part of this campaign, alumni of more than 30 public and private universities of the country and different trade associations including BASIS, BACCO, BCS, ECAB, ISPAB are being connected. Interested tech-based Bangladeshi startups may complete the online registration to take part in this competition.
However, no individual can participate alone. A team can apply to have a minimum of two members and a maximum of four members including the team leader.
In addition, those who have completed a Bachelor's Degree or Masters or MPhil or Ph.D. in the field of educational qualifications or have appeared in the graduation or equivalent examination of any educational institution in Bangladesh recognized by UGC can apply. It should be noted that the age of the applicants should be between 22 to 39 years on 19 September 2020.
The last date for registration to participate in ideaTHON is November 21, 2020 (Saturday). For details and application, interested applicants need to visit - http://ideathon.startupbangladesh.gov.bd/
After registration, the best 100 teams will be selected at the end of the preliminary screening and they will be given initial mentoring. Then, the top 25 teams from the selected teams will be nominated for the final qualifying round.
Special mentoring will be provided to the top 25 teams selected before taking part in the finals. At the end of the judges' judging session, the top 5 teams, i.e. startups, will be honored as the winners. The winners will be able to participate in a total of 10 persons from the top 5 teams (2 persons x 5 teams= 10 persons) in South Korea, which means 2 persons from each winning team.
Last year, a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed between the Ministry of Justice (South Korea), ICT Division (Bangladesh), Korea Productivity Center (KPC) and Korea Invention Promotion Association (KIPA) at the Seoul International Innovation Fair 2019.
According to the MoU, five startups in Bangladesh will get comprehensive incubation support from KPC under the Global Start-up Immigration Center of South Korea. A delegation of iDEA project with the theme Startup Bangladesh led by Kazi Hosna Ara, Deputy Project Director of iDEA Project participated in it.