The online business mission to Singapore took place on December 17 with twelve Skolkovo residents pitching their AI solutions. The program titled “Global Challenge – artificial intelligence for sustainable development goals (SDGs)” was created by the Skolkovo Foundation and its partners in the AI sector such as Tinkoff Bank and Marine Innovation, the aim being to promote Russian innovative developments and to create a case map of AI SDGs. The program is part of the Skolkovo Foundation’s Sk[ai]HUB (Skolkovo AI Hub).
Singapore online business mission. Screengrab: Sk.ru.
While the pitching day on December 17 is an integral part of the mission, the program also comprised an open webinar, which took place on December 7 with the participation of experts on Asian markets, aimed at companies seeking market entry into Singapore. From 7-10 December, during Russia House Startup Pitching Days 2020, the Skolkovo companies presented their projects to international investors; this was organized with the support of the Ministry of Economic Development of the Russian Federation, Sistema Asia, the Skolkovo Foundation and the Singapore Week of Innovation & Technology (SWITCH 2020). The pitch sessions resulted in three finalists – Just AI, Nanosemantics Lab, and ProRodniki; they will continue work with Sistema Asia foundation experts on the Sales Jet platform and will partake in B2B meetings with venture funds and Singaporean state agencies.
The twelve startups pitching on December 17 were VisionLabs, Sarafan Technology, AIMED, Just AI, Optimum SkyNet Engine, Nanosemantics Lab, Imredi, ARNI, GAGARIN.AI, Neuro.net, VMA, and BumbTech. The solutions presented included a hardware/firmware and cloud system for recognition and video information analysis, a virtual assistant for business, a digital platform to increase labor efficiency and productivity, motivation and satisfaction levels among personnel using AI/ML, a voice robot for communicating with clients, a platform for machine learning models intended for photo and video recognition on mobile devices, a mobile app for detecting skin diseases, and many more.
The Skolkovo Foundation chairman, Arkady Dvorkovich, made the opening remarks:
“This is the last online business mission of 2020," he said. “This has been a long path, but in spite of the many difficulties, we have achieved much. We have a long history of collaboration with Singapore, starting before the Skolkovo Foundation emerged in Russia; we have learned a lot from them on how to manage a city economy, and I think the Moscow government is successfully putting this knowledge into practice. Hopefully we will be able to share our good experience with our Singapore friends. The Moscow School of Management in Skolkovo has also been a partner to Singapore for a long time, and the Skolkovo Foundation is trying to achieve much by collaborating with our partners. Some of our companies are already working in the Singapore market, the biggest example being Group IB, which has its hub there. We have quite a few companies selling their products and services in Singapore, and for our companies it isn’t just a country or city, but a window into the whole South East Asian region, a huge market offering opportunities for innovative businesses. Today’s online session is also part of our AI challenge, which we believe is an appropriate tool to help us achieve sustainable development goals; I think that it is a good focus to promote our businesses, to achieve business objectives and the broader goals related to the improvement of society overall. Good luck to everyone, thank you to our partners and to the organizers.”
Following Mr. Dvorkovich’s introduction, Russia’s trade representative in Singapore, Alexander Svinin, also made opening remarks, followed by the vice president and executive director of the Skolkovo Foundation IT cluster Konstantin Parshin, who gave an overview presentation on the innovation center, the Russia-Singapore Business Council CEO Sergey Pronin, who gave some insights into the Singaporean market, and the business development director of the Skolkovo Foundation IT cluster Sergei Dutov, who gave a presentation titled “Sk[ai]HUB – Ecosystem for Global Development and Interaction of Russian AI Projects.”
On December 18, the startup companies will hold B2B meetings with Singaporean companies.