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Industry leaders to mentor Kickstart Fund recipients

June 21, 2013 Tourist Boards No Comments Email Email

Successful applicants of the recently-launched S$5 million Kickstart Fund can benefit from mentorship guidance and support from industry leaders during the execution of their project.

The Kickstart Fund is an incentive scheme aimed at supporting untested yet innovative lifestyle events and concepts with tourism potential.

The mentors are selected based on their in-depth market knowledge and wealth of experience in their field, and include industry leaders such as:

•    Mr Dennis Foo, Chief Executive Officer & Executive Director, St James Holdings

•    Mr Andrew Ing, Chief Operating Officer of The Lo & Behold Group

•    Mr Robin Lokerman, President, MCI Group Asia Pacific

•    Mr J P Nathan, Director of Programming & Partnership, The Esplanade Co. Ltd

•    Mr Michael Roche, Executive Director, Singapore GP and Managing Director, Live Nation Lushington

•    Ms Esther Soh, Managing Director, Zouk 

STB will continue to identify and engage industry leaders to be involved in the mentorship programme.

Ms Lynette Pang, STB’s executive director of Arts and Entertainment and F1 and Sports, says: “The Kickstart Fund encourages and accelerates software innovation and new ideas through providing support on various fronts. Apart from the financial assistance to help defray the initial high risks of experimenting with new ideas, we will also connect grant recipients to industry veterans who can provide practical guidance to help maximise the potential of their project ideas.  I am happy that our industry partners share STB’s vision in encouraging innovation and experimentation among companies here, and through that, enhance the quality of our tourism experiences.”

Mr Michael Roche, executive director of Singapore GP and managing director of Live Nation Lushington, adds: “With 10 years grounding and development in high fashion in London’s West End followed by 27 years of management experience in fashion, hospitality and entertainment in Asia, I am privileged to participate in the mentoring role for the Kickstart Fund. The first steps and early development of taking an idea and concept to a sustainable business model are the most challenging and daunting. It’s that giant leap where support and guidance can be critical to success and I hope that I can lend focus, support and steerage to the Kickstart entrepreneurs to become Singapore’s new business innovators.”

The Kickstart Fund, which supports experimental concepts across the lifestyle sectors of arts, entertainment, sports, retail and dining, will hold quarterly calls for application till its expiry in March 2016. Examples of projects that may be supported by Kickstart include pop-ups, live events, and services such as art and culinary tours.  The first cycle for Kickstart has opened for applications till 28 June and the form can be downloaded from

Applicants will be evaluated by a panel comprising STB directors, industry professionals and representatives from government agencies championing the development of lifestyle industries. Evaluation criteria include uniqueness of their proposed concept and its tourism potential, the soundness of their business plan, and the track record and competency of the management team. Successful applicants will receive funding support of up to 50 per cent of qualifying costs, capped at a maximum of S$75,000 per project.

The next cycle for Kickstart Fund will open for application in September 2013.

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