CapitaLand enters $7.4m innovation partnership with Singapore’s EDB

Singapore skyline. Credit: CapitaLand.

CapitaLand has entered into a S$10 million ($7.4 million) innovation partnership with the Singapore Economic Development Board (EDB) through a programme called CapitaLand ELEVATE.

The programme aims to upskill CapitaLand staff in areas such as data analytics, digital marketing and digital product management. It will also explore new technologies that will enable CapitaLand to create people-centric products, services and experiences.

According to Dr Beh Swan Gin, Chairman of the Singapore Economic Development Board, the programme “aligned with EDB’s effort to support Singapore-based businesses to strengthen their digital competencies and leverage the growth opportunities brought about by digitalisation.”

This will see CapitaLand co-create new products and services with external partners.

CapitaLand’s partnership with EDB and its progress with its corporate venture unit, C31V, follows its recent collaborations with Chinese startups to accelerate the digitalisation of its real estate offerings. For instance, it has partnered Chinese technology firm Megvii to roll out its Face++ facial recognition technology at CapitaLand offices and malls in China.

The Group also renewed a tripartite partnership with IE Singapore and co-working space operator UrWork to explore the integration of CapitaStar1 and UrWork’s digital platforms to enhance the experience for members of both CapitaStar and UrWork in China.

IE Singapore will also support CapitaLand’s set-up of innovation centres in China to incubate selected Singapore companies and to test-bed their technologies in the Group’s properties in China.

Lim Ming Yan, President & Group CEO of CapitaLand Limited, said, “Leveraging the S$10-million partnership with EDB, CapitaLand ELEVATE will shore up our innovation capabilities through the upskilling of staff and test-bedding of the latest technologies to expand our product and service offerings.”

Besides building its internal capabilities, CapitaLand’s corporate venture arm, C31 Ventures (C31V), has invested S$10 million in startups. Eighteen property technology (proptech) initiatives have been piloted at CapitaLand properties since C31V was launched in July 201

Its portfolio companies include omnichannel retail enabler Ace Turtle; customer insights platform Mobikon; homegrown premium coworking operator The Great Room; and online table reservation company Chope.

Additionally, C31V has been selected as one of SGInnovate’s co-investment partners under the Startup SG Equity scheme. SGInnovate will be managing a portion of the funds under this scheme, which involves identifying and investing in deep tech startups focusing on technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI), cybersecurity and blockchain.

Startup SG Equity aims to stimulate private-sector investments in innovative, Singapore-based technology startups with intellectual property and global market potential.

Lim adds, “C31V’s investments have provided us keen insights into disruptive businesses and allowed us to address them pre-emptively. We work together with our portfolio companies to test-bed these technologies and business models at our properties to better engage our customers and tenants, increase productivity and to scale up faster.”

“Our inclusion as a co-investor by SGInnovate, coupled with earlier funding from the Singapore National Research Foundation’s Early Stage Venture Fund III, attest to C31V’s position as a well-regarded corporate venture fund.”

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