Singapore has now outdone the Silicon Valley in nurturing startups. The Lion City has various programs that help young and ambitious entrepreneurs to start their dream businesses. Overall, the country is also considered to be one of the best places to do business in the world. Most factors like the economy, market, labor and policies favor business operations.
Back to startups, it is worth mentioning that the greatest difficulty with initiating a startup is finding a source of capital. Most people have ideas about what they would like to do in business, but they are silenced by lack of capital. However, Singapore has a solution for this through providing a variety of financing options.
If you have a business idea, it is necessary to create a compelling business plan indicating all the strategies that you have to succeed once you acquire the funds. Those who look in the right places are likely to succeed depending on their qualifications. So, allow us to guide you in the best funding options for business startups in Singapore.
Government Funding Options
The government of Singapore has prepared some funding programs to assist SMEs in the country with funds and in business operations. Check out some of them below.
Early Stage Venture Funding (ESVF)
It is the largest government-organized program that funds both large ventures and small startups in Singapore. However, its focus is on tech-based ventures. They have cooperated with other organizations who contribute millions of dollars to seed these tech startups in the country. Therefore, interested entrepreneurs have to illustrate their innovation and prove that their startups will succeed within a short time. As is common in the country, they organize mentorship programs and training now that the technology sector is sensitive and volatile.
Capability Development Grant (CDG)
This is one of the most popular government grants available for business startups in the areas they have listed. The first thing to check is whether you qualify under the areas they assist. Although they do not offer the full startup capital, those that show a need can receive up to SGD 30,000. They also aid in paying for consultancy, training and the cost of business incorporation. All you must do is prepare the business plan and complete an application through the recommended channel.
These funds are controlled and handled by Spring Singapore, which is a government agency. First-time startups that prove to have an excellent business idea are the main beneficiaries of this program. It is also a must to prove that you are a permanent resident, if not a citizen of Singapore, to qualify for this program.
Another excellent thing is that it includes a mentor-ship program called Accredited Mentor Partners. They choose the best applicants and assist them with the right advice. So, if you are not sure about how to set up a company in Singapore, this part of ACE startups will take care of you.
Comcare Enterprise Fund
The Ministry of Social and Family Development has recently launched this program, and it is one of the latest under a government initiative. Its aim is to assist startups in the social sector with funds and startup incubation programs. However, the startups must prove that they will employ some Singaporeans who are less fortunate especially in the local community. Because it is a social program, it is meant to improve the livelihood of every person on the island. Although the program is new, it amazingly offers up to SGD 300,000.
Private Funding Options
Startups can also benefit from the private sector. As a business hub, some private funding options in Singapore have been successful in their projects over the years.
This type of program relies on investors who are experienced and successful entrepreneurs who are willing to help startups to kick off. On top of investing their money in your business idea, they will also offer advice and support until your business picks up. The terms of the agreement differ depending on the type of startup and the risks that are involved. After assessing various funding options, most startups in Singapore prefer this option since they receive continuous support. The investors will watch the business closely because they have an interest in its success.
With the fast growth in the business sector in Singapore, the government continues to make policies and taxation programs that favor business. Because of this, families, friends and investors will find it easy to support startups. After all, the risk is significantly reduced. In the end, you will pay them back through dividends. There are many people who have invested in startups after being led to do so by the conducive business environment. Most of them have reaped major benefits from such startups. If you have a compelling business idea, do not be afraid to conduct equity fundraising, although it should be considered as one of the last options.
Getting a loan
If it has to go this way, you may have no option other than to visit a financial firm and seek a loan for your business startup. Loans may be sensitive because the lenders require repayment to start the following month. Startups may not have established themselves well enough to begin such a commitment immediately. If you have another source of income, then this could work. Loans may only work well for small startups that require a minimal amount of capital.
How to Qualify for Startup Funds in Singapore
If you read online, you will find numerous tips on how to succeed in a startup, especially in sourcing for funds. However, different projects require unique approaches. Indeed, there are many factors that apply in this case. However, creating a compelling business plan should be the first thing to do. Ensure that you have an excellent idea on the table and critically plan how to sell it as a business idea. Most funding institutions and grant-offering boards must be convinced that the idea that you have will work. Without this, they may not release the funds. This move is also important during the launching of the startup. All the best as you look for funds to start a business in Singapore.