Nanospark is an entrepreneurship division of NanoCore. Nanospark was started in late 2008 with an aim to promote technology entrepreneurship. We at Nanospark, provide the following.
- Consultation and hands-on assistance in obtaining funding for commercializable research
- Consultation and hands-on assistance in preparing proposals, business plans and similar documents as well as assistance with actual development work
- Organization of workshops and networking sessions
on the first point, Nanospark has so far advised a number of outstanding NUS teams who have been successful in obtaining commercialization grant money in the form of NRF Proof of Concept Grants, SMART Innovation Grants and SMART Ignition Grants. The total funding amount obtained by the supported teams is approximately S$ 1.4 Million and the success rate for teams that have worked with Nanospark is over 60%. The funded projects are in the areas of Molecular Diagnostics, Semiconductor Testing, X-Ray Spectrometry, Ultra-fast IR-Spectroscopy, Advanced Microscopy and Synthetic Therapeutics.
On the second point, Nanospark has very closely worked with a number of research teams on developing crucial technology, writing business plans, assisting in the formation of companies, identifying possible staff for a number of commercialization projects and the formation and maintenance of investor’s relations.
On the third point, Nanospark has organized the 1st NUS Academic Entrepreneurship Workshop in November 2009, which drew close to 150 people and saw a programme of around 15 talks from entrepreneurs at different stages, including Adrian Burden, a successful entrepreneur who set up a company out of IMRE in Singapore and sold it to an Indian company for close to S$ 20 Million. In April 2010 and August 2010 Nanospark organized the 1st and 2nd session of the Singapore Venture Club. Anindya Datta introduced his company Wordster to an audience of close to 100 people at the 1st session. His talk was followed by a networking session. Mervyn Fathianathan introduced his company Biomers at the 2nd session to an audience of close to 200 people. His talk was again followed by a networking session.
The Venture Club sessions were much oversubscribed, leading to some problems with the organization which we will work on resolving for future events. Nanospark has published the Singapore Venture Report in August 2010. This report gives details and updates on many of Singapore’s commercialization projects and startups and also has columns by investors, entrepreneurs as well as patent lawyers. It may be useful as a resource for the venture community in Singapore. The 3rd session will be held on 11th September 2014.
Finally, Nanospark has championed the creation of a new degree programme for graduate students who want to go into industry or set up a company, the NUS PhD-MBA.