by Marlo C. Novino
The Mindanao Startup Challenge (MSC), banner program of iDEYA: Center of Innovation and Technopreneurship (CIT), was a Mindanao wide competition designed to generate startup teams which will become the in-house incubatees of the center. It received a total of 52 entries which were submitted from as far as the Davao Region, Zamboanga Peninsula, Northern Mindanao, Soccsksargen, and Bohol. Out of the 52 entries, 42 of them were in their idea stage, nine (9) were already in the prototyping stage, and one (1) is in the scaling stage. The final Top Seven (7) teams were announced last November 7, 2016 during the MSC three-day Bootcamp and culmination day.
The center also incubated homegrown startups from the Entrep – 197 Class of the Marketing Department, CBAA, and some MSU-IIT team winners from other national technology-based startup competitions such as Bank of the Philippine Islands’ SINAG U Challenge, Globe and Molave Development Foundation’s App Challenge Cebu.
The final nine (9) startup alpha batch of the center are as follows:
my.Eskwela, which is an online platform that monitors and maximizes students’ performance;
GoPhilanthro helps in providing information regarding social welfare through crowd sourcing;
ArduFarm is a smart and modular aquaponics system;
knapp, which is an online delivery platform using local habal-habal;
magbisaya is a Cebuano-based learning application for children;
FarmSense develops drones dedicated for agriculture precision;
HomeSearch is a platform that brings tenants and home rental owners together for a convenient transaction;
Encase produces smartphone cases made of engineered bamboo; and
E-One Seven, which is a Filipino made mind board game.
The teams will undergo a three-month incubation phase equipping them with necessary trainings and mentorships relating to the market and their customer, their innovation and product and eventually their pitch to customers and investors. They will also undergo different writeshops such as patent and grant writing. Senior experts from the innovation and startup industry such as Matthew Escobido of Asian Institute of Management, Chino Atilano of Time Free Innovations, Joie Cruz of Taktika Multimedia, Carlo Valencia of StartupPH Mentorship, and Artie Lopez of Brainsparks.
The center is now actively preparing for the second run of the Mindanao Startup Challenge this April.