Petronas invites start-ups to take part in FutureTech 2.0

KUALA LUMPUR: Petroliam Nasional Bhd (Petronas) is inviting Malaysian start-ups to participate in the second edition of its technology accelerator programme, Petronas FutureTech 2.0.

In a joint statement today, the oil and gas company said the programme is aimed at encouraging local innovations and scale up home-grown technology start-ups to be at par with international standards.

It added that the programme continues to partner with global venture capital firm 500 Start-ups, and is expected to bring in greater prospects for participating start-ups as Petronas, through its corporate venture capital arm, Petronas Ventures, has teamed up with government-linked companies (GLCs) Telekom Malaysia Bhd (TM) and Sime Darby Plantation Bhd (SDP).

Petronas said the collaboration is expected to unlock synergies from cross-industries expertise and maximise the value impact of the programme to local start-ups.

It also said that the strategic partnership would enable the GLCs to uncover potentially game-changing technologies, accelerate new ideas that can help transform local industries while at the same time, enable the participating teams to have greater market access for growth.

The focus themes for FutureTech 2.0 are Industry 4.0, Specialty Chemicals and Advance Materials, Future of Energy, Digital Transformation and Retail Innovation.

“Following the success of the first FutureTech programme in 2019, the first accelerator of its kind in Malaysia, we foresee bigger prospects towards nation-building and collaborating with major corporations is the right way to further nurture the ecosystem for Malaysian start-ups.

“It also creates a positive socio-economic impact to the community through education and skill investment as well as foster tech-driven innovations that support the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals,” said Petronas Ventures head, Arni Laily Anwarrudin.

She said FutureTech 2.0 also works closely with the National Technology Innovation Sandbox (NTIS) programme, an initiative by the Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation, which aims to accelerate the creation and acceptance of local innovations through a structured framework within a controlled environment and towards commercialisation.

Petronas Ventures funded two start-ups from the first cohort, robotics and automation, for agriculture technology start-up Braintree Technologies Sdn Bhd and sustainable energy start-up SOLS Energy Sdn Bhd.

Shortlisted start-ups in FutureTech 2.0 would undergo an intensive 12-week virtual programme in September this year, which includes masterclasses, workshops and coaching from 500 Start-ups’ mentors as well as C-suite and experts from Petronas, TM and SDP.

These start-ups would have the opportunity to accelerate their business solutions via a proof of concept (POC) and get access to insights and resources from the GLCs.

Applications for FutureTech 2.0 are now open until July 27, 2021.

Interested start-ups can get more details on the programme and apply via ecosystems.500.co/petronas-future-tech. – Bernama