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Samsung-backed startup contest names Vietnamese winners of $15,000 funding

Thursday, December 24, 2015, 10:35 GMT+7
Samsung-backed startup contest names Vietnamese winners of $15,000 funding
Team members of Hoayeuthuong pose for a group photograph with their prize at the Go Live! Vietnam Venture Cup in Ho Chi Minh City on December 22, 2015 in this photo provided by the organizers.

Two Vietnamese startups, an agriculture tech developer and an online flower delivery platform, have been selected as the winners of the Go Live! Vietnam Venture Cup, a Samsung-backed competition that sought to find, fund and build entrepreneurial talents.

Mimosatek won the “Startup Fund” category, whereas Hoayeuthuong claimed the top prize for the “Growth Fund,” both of which came with a US$15,000 grant, after the final competition round in Ho Chi Minh City on Tuesday.

As they are named, the “Startup Fund” was meant to support newly-founded startups, and the “Growth Fund” was for established firms with remarkable growth.

The Go Live! Vietnam Venture Cup was also sponsored by venture capital firm IDG Ventures Vietnam, online education provider Topica Edtech Group, and startup community Launch.

Mimosatek was founded in November 2014 with only two members, but has since expanded its staff to 12, according to the company’s website.

The firm aims to apply the “Internet of Things” trend to agriculture, by developing apps and hardware products that help farmers maximize productivity at minimal cost and crop risks.

In the meantime, Hoayeuthuong was set up by tech engineer Pham Hoang Thai Duong in October 2010, with an objective of becoming a flower delivery expert.

The Ho Chi Minh City-based startup allows orders online and now has shops in Hanoi, Da Nang and a dozen other provinces across the country.

From the initial investment of $700, the company is seeking finances to expand production and build an ecosystem for Vietnam’s flower sector, which Duong said could be worth $1 billion in the near future.

“We expect that Vietnam will be one of the five countries with the most developed flower sector in the next five years,” he told newswire VnExpress in a November interview.

Both Mimosatek and Hoayeuthuong are ‘incubated’ by the Founder Institute Program, an initiative funded by Topica Edtech Group.

Pham Hop Pho, vice president of IDG Ventures Vietnam, said at a press meeting to introduce the competition in October that Vietnamese startups have begun shifting from copying models from other countries to develop from their original ideas.

The Go Live! Vietnam Venture Cup will thus enable such startups to have more access to funding and networking with global investors, he said.  

The organizers will also try to make Go Live! Vietnam Venture Cup an annual competition in which the local startup community will be able to receive not only funding but also experience and inspiration from others.

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