This was revealed by Truong Gia Binh, FPT chairman, during Techfest 2015, the country’s biggest event for the startup ecosystem, that is currently ongoing in Hanoi.
The tech market leader plans to raise $3 million for the incubator. So far, it has secured $1 million. “We want not only 500 Startups but other venture capitalists to assist tech startups. So, for the rest $2 million, whoevers invest one dollar, we will invest another one,” Binh said.
With this initiative, FPT targets to support a couple of hundred early stage startup groups. “If the program, which is expected to be launched soon, succeeds, we will consider implementing it in on annual basis,” he added.
Binh said he believed in the potential of Vietnamese startups.
According to him, one successful example is Nguyen Ha Dong – the creator of the viral game Flappy Bird. Dong started his business in 2013 and made Flappy Bird the most downloaded app in over 100 nations, within months.
Although the fame killed the app (Dong removed the app, following harsh opinions), he is an undeniable inspiration for young entrepreneurs “to think big and to do incredible things,” said Binh .
According to Nguyen Quan, minister of science and technology, the Vietnamese startup ecosystem has not progressed as expected, but the government is calling for the private sector to participate in supporting young companies to innovate.
The country hopes to become a startup nation, like Israel, and aims to have 5,000 tech firms by 2020. Binh said he has led a delegation of 26 Vietnamese companies to Israel to learn its development model.
People can apply technology to any aspect of life, he said, from tourism to agriculture. “That is a huge opportunity for the young generation to start business more easily than what we did in the past,” he said while addressing the Forbes 30 Under 30 Summit on Tuesday.
FPT is one of the pioneers in supporting tech startups. Around 2005, when startup culture had just begun in Vietnam, the company had its own incubator unit, which is the origin of a number of FPT spin-offs.
The company’s chairman said that the alliance with 500 Startups will come to practice in no time, based on the resources of both parties involved.
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