Singapore Management University launches Asian Youth Entrepreneurship Programme, first of such collaboration in the region

Singapore, 7 March 2015 (Saturday) –  The Institute of Innovation and Entrepreneurship (IIE) at Singapore Management University (SMU) has launched the Asian Youth Entrepreneurship Programme (AYEP) to foster cross-cultural learning and experiential learning through an entrepreneurship programme.

Between 8 to 10 students each from China’s Zhejiang University, Taiwan’s National Chengchi University, Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, South Korea’s Ulsan National Institute of Science and Technology, together with 8 students from SMU took part in this inaugural programme which was held in SMU from 2-6 March.  

Students from each university were put into different teams such that no team comprised two students from the same university.

Professor Arcot Desai Narasimhalu, Director of IIE, said “This is the first time that such a collaborative programme has been launched in this region, we hope it would foster long term cross-border entrepreneurial partnerships.

“Innovation and entrepreneurship are critical to the economic growth and sustainability of a country. Through this programme, we hope that more youths from Singapore and this region would gain early exposure to such concepts and best practices, which would hopefully encourage more of them to embark on their entrepreneurship journey.”

Over the course of five days, the students attended several learning sessions such as identifying business opportunities, building a company, raising funds and writing a business plan. They also visited FusionWorld, where they experienced the fusion of science and engineering disciplines and the latest innovations and state-of-the-art technologies in an advanced technology wonderland. A visit to Joyful Frog Digital Incubator, which houses a strong innovation and entrepreneurship community comprising start-ups, venture capital firms and tech incubators, gave students the opportunity to experience the vibrant start-up community in Singapore.  

The programme culminated in a competition where the teams worked on business ideas that could be launched in different markets. They presented their ideas on the final day in front of a panel of judges comprising Dr Virginia Cha and Dr Miles Gilman who are both Entrepreneur-in-Residence at IIE, and Mr Uday Deshpande, Co-founder of Tenshi Peak.

The teams were evaluated on the scalability of their innovations, clear go-to-market strategies, well identified entry barriers for competitors, good execution plan and strong intellectual protection.

Team WEducation emerged winners with their idea of providing affordable and quality private tutoring as a way of reducing educational inequality. Team iQS was the first runner-up with their creation of an intelligent hardware with Bluetooth technology to help smokers quit the habit. Team Food Fair claimed the second runner-up position with their mobile application which connects supermarkets with consumers, selling soon-to-be-expired food at a cheaper price, thereby helping to reduce food wastage.

Photo caption: Team WEducation emerged winners of the business plan competition which was part of the inaugural Asian Youth Entrepreneurship Programme. [From left to right] Dong Hun Kang (Ulsan National Institute of Science & Technology), Tu Ping-Shen (National Chengchi University), Zhou Hao (Zhejiang University), Professor Arcot Desai Narasimhalu, Director of IIE, Li Chi Shun (Hong Kong University of Science & Technology), Cheng Yuet Yee (Hong Kong University of Science & Technology), Tong Nhat Duong (Singapore Management University).

For more information, please contact:

Teo Chang Ching (Mr)

Assistant Director, Corporate Communications

Office of Corporate Communications & Marketing

DID: 6828 5238

Email: ccteo [at]