The Project Hub Fellowship, Myanmar’s first start-up incubation, has selected the successful applicants who will benefit from the four-month programme.
The fellowship, organised by Yangon-based co-working space Project Hub and sponsored by Swiss media company Ringier AG, aims to help develop Myanmar entrepreneurs to develop sustainable businesses.
The fellows will benefit from sponsored membership of the Project Hub co-working space, fibre-optic internet connection, workshops and seminars, as well as coaching and mentorship.
The workshops cover crucial concepts for start ups and have already including “Business Model Canvas” which helped the fellows look at business models, followed by a second workshop named “Lean Start up” and future workshops will look at business laws in Myanmar as well as financial management.
Fellows will also benefit from the help of mentors, internationally experienced entrepreneurs who have started their own businesses. Mentors will provide the fellows with advice to refine ideas, products and business models so that they are in a position to bring their products to market by the end of the Fellowship, culminating in an opportunity for them to take part in Investor Night Pitch, which will take place during Global Entrepreneurship Week in November, following the success of last year’s inaugural event.
“Not only will the fellows benefit from the workshops and mentorships, but also from the sponsored Project Hub space, which is sponsored by Ringier AG. In Myanmar, it can be very difficult to find affordable, reliable high-speed wifi access and the fellows will benefit from this,” said Naoto Numezawa, programme manager of Project Hub Fellowship.
The successful applicants, or “fellows”, were selected by a panel of five selectors who reviewed dozens of applications, eventually interviewing 15 candidates. The successful fellows came from a range of backgrounds and are working on varied projects.
Stephen Jr Kyaw, a public television personality and presenter for Skynet, is working with Erik Oo, who worked in the social media marketing industry, to develop their own public relations firm, called t3pr.
Myo Myo has worked with various print media companies in Myanmar and abroad, including Wall Street Journal and Yangon Media, and is using her experience in the industry to develop a business journal in both English and Burmese.
Htet Wai Phyo is working with a local partner to build a Myanmar language search engine, a project he has been working on for two years and expects to begin operating fully in 18 months.
Having completed his studies in a distance learning course in Business IT from the University of Greenwich, Htet Wai found the Project Hub information on facebook and is already seeing benefits from the programme.
“Before, I knew a lot about the technological side, but through this programme and with the help from my mentor, I have learnt a lot about the business development side idea of my project,” he told Myanmar Business Today.
Currently based in Singapore working for ‘Zimplistic Inventions’, a tech start up developing the first-ever “roti maker”, Aung Ko Ko Thet is working on a side project in his homeland which is aimed at providing a common platform for Myanmar SMEs around the world.
“I feel that this programme would guide and train me through well-defined steps towards building a more mature and feasible business model for my start up. After the first workshop, I feel more confident and focused for my start up project,” he said.
Myo Mya Swe Tun is founder and chief executive of Prepaid Master, a start-up that distributes prepaid cards with a negotiable payment plan, an idea that he is developing through the fellowship.
Tun Win Naing, another graduate from the University of Greenwich is using his passion for Myanmar snacks to improve the way they are represented to end users and make them more accessible for local and foreign people.