Digital startups get a push from DTI

By: Victor Anthony V. Silva August 09,2016 - 10:01 PM

IN order to help the Cebu business sector understand the startup ecosystem better, the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) has spearheaded a seminar for its partners today.

DTI Cebu Director Maria Elena Arbon said more than 30 from the information technology (IT) industry, Department of Science and Technology, as well as local chamber groups will be part of the activity.

“Although startups are a form of enterprise, they are entirely different from micro, small, and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs),” she told Cebu Daily News.

Arbon said MSMEs expand by branching out, but startups, which are mostly technology-based, scale up in an entirely different way.

Startups, such as vehicle-hailing app Uber, have products or services that people want and need.

But Arbon said DTI’s partners don’t really understand what startups are and the ecosystem they thrive in.

She said that most enterprises today, whose owners could be potential startup funders, are still inclined to do conventional business practices.

The activity today, Arbon added, would hopefully bridge the gap between traditional businesses and the growing startup community.

Arbon said the session will be held at the Big Hotel in Mandaue City from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. with Joey Gurango, former president of the Philippine Software Industry Association (PSIA), giving the lecture.

The activity is part of the mentorship program for local startups called Launchpad introduced by DTI and PSIA last month.

With better understanding of the startup community, Arbon said they are hoping for more investments to come for these types of enterprise.

Through Launchpad, she said that chosen startups will eventually be ready to link with existing businesses for funding.

Arbon earlier said that startups need mentorship more than funding, as funding will come once these businesses gain traction and have already attracted a market.

According to the 2015 Philippine Roadmap for Digital Startups, a startup is defined as any business idea less than five years old, registered with the financial regulatory authorities of any country, provided that majority of its team is operating and residing in the Philippines.

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TAGS: business, Cebu, department of science and technology, Department of Trade and Industry, DTI, Enterprise, Information Technology, startup

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