Bio-Based Accelerator To Transform Start-Ups & SMEs Into Mature, Tech-Savy Champions
PUTRAJAYA, 16 JUNE 2022 – The Ministry of Agriculture and Food Industries (MAFI) expects 100 existing or new start-ups and SMEs in Malaysia’s agriculture, industrial, and healthcare sectors to participate in the Bio-Based Accelerator (BBA) programme by the second quarter of 2023. The newly launched programme carried out by Malaysian Bioeconomy Development Corporation (Bioeconomy Corporation) provides bio-based start-ups and SMEs with guidance and nurturing activities that address their gaps in technology adoption, skills, financial capability, regulatory preparedness, and product marketability, thus enabling them to scale-up and become mature, tech-savvy companies.
MAFI Minister YB Datuk Seri Dr Ronald Kiandee said the BBA programme can further strengthen the National Food Security agenda because it assists new companies, micro businesses or large bio-based companies to be more innovative through the use of science, technology and automation in their respective business operations. “So far, a total of 49 companies have been approved to undergo the BBA programme. The companies are expected to contribute RM737 million worth of investments and provide close to 2,000 job opportunities within three years. Bioeconomy Corporation is targeting a total investment value of RM2 billion by the end of 2025 with 70 per cent of the companies involved adapting technology and automation in their businesses,” he added during the official launch of BBA today. He added that biotechnology was one of MAFI’s focus for the next 10 years under the National Agrofood Policy 2021-2030 (DAN 2.0) to increase the use of technologies especially biotechnology and accelerate company growth through collaborations and bio-based programmes to increase new investments, in line with BBA programme.
Bioeconomy Corporation’s Chairman, Senator YB Datuk Iskandar Dzulkarnain Abdul Khalid said that BBA is also a platform for companies that do not adopt biotechnology activities to unlock their potential and become BioNexus Status companies, which would qualify them for special tax incentives, facilitation, and other guarantees that further assist their growth. “As of the fourth quarter of 2021, 252 BioNexus Status companies recorded RM4.1 billion worth of realised investments, which is an increase of nine percent compared to the same period in 2020 despite the on-going pandemic. We believe this figure will improve when BBA companies eventually move up the value-chain to become BioNexus Status companies,” he added.
In conjunction with the BBA programme launch, Bioeconomy Corporation represented by its Chief Executive Officer, YBrs En Mohd Khairul Fidzal Abdul Razak, exchanged a MoU with the Malaysian Productivity Corporation (MPC) represented by its Member of the Board of Management, YBrs En. Mohd Yazid Abdul Majid. The agreement marks the collaboration between the two parties to enhance engagement and develop facilitation and nurturing programmes for companies in the bio-based industries in Malaysia, including companies under the BBA programme.
Through the BBA programme, companies can participate in numerous development trainings and programmes related to product development, technology facilitation, market access, and funding assistance. BBA also includes structured knowledge-transfer, training, pitching and product readiness sessions, as well as shared laboratories or facilities through the BioNexus Partners Programme (BNP) to promote technology and commercial readiness among the companies. With the strategic nurturing provided, BBA companies can be ready to apply for various certifications including GMP, HACCP, MESTI and Halal. The companies also have the opportunity to be part of Bioeconomy Corporation’s initiatives such as Biokerjaya @ My Future Agro for employment, Agro-based Venture Fund (AGFV) for funding, and the National Bioeconomy Blueprint, a 10-year strategy for Malaysia’s biotechnology and bio-based industries that is expected to launch in 2022. For more information, visit https://tinyurl.com/bdertkt9