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[Funding Alert] NUS Invests $20 Million In Deep-Tech Startups And Researchers

The National University of Singapore (NUS) will contribute an additional $20 million to support start-ups and innovation activities in the deep tech space, ranging from creating cell-based meat to creating a robotic guide dog.

NUS President Tan Eng Chye stated on March 18 at the university’s deep tech startup showcase that this is to inspire more scholars to translate their work and discoveries into practical solutions and to foster innovation.

The Graduate Research Innovation Programme (Grip) will be improved with the help of half of the additional cash. 

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The improved program Grip 2.0, which aims to support the establishment of start-ups resulting from university research, will provide access to industrial collaborations and award post-graduate students, alumni, and researchers with up to $250,000, an increase from the previous program’s $100,000.

Prof Tan said “We aim to encourage our researchers to accelerate translational work to realise the real-world impact of their research faster,”.

Prof. Tan stated that the remaining $10 million will be used to establish a new series of Innovation Fellowship and Venture Awards, which will be granted to academics and researchers to further their work through steps like scaling up prototypes.

The amount of funding varies from $80,000 to $250,000, contingent on the developer’s ability to find commercially viable or broadly accepted uses for his research at different stages of development.

Deputy Prime Minister Heng Swee Keat, speaking at the same event, said that the commitment to deep tech and commercialisation are of high priority as part of Singapore’s Research, Innovation, and Enterprise (RIE) 2025 plan. 

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DPM Heng said “Funding and talent put together can create a virtuous cycle that drives innovation output, deepens the ecosystem, and, in turn, draws more talent and funding in,”, listing strong university ties with research talent and the patient wait for funding to support long development cycles as key elements for deep tech to thrive. 

Nonetheless, Singapore’s resources and size still place limitations on it; therefore, it is critical to foster an innovative culture, give priority to inter-institutional cooperation, and take the initiative in venture formation.

About NUS

NUS, people and their commitment to exploring new areas of knowledge at NUS are influencing the future. They have grown from a small Asian thought leader university to one of international prominence in just one century. Their purpose is informed by their strategic location at the intersection of Asia, which also provides them with a unique opportunity to address urgent problems that affect Singapore, Asia, and the entire world.

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