Majority of the health and wellness solution available in our region is not sourced locally. The price is always high due to conversion making it less accessible to most who needs it. Products related to nutritions or platform technology are also not designed for local consumer, making it harder to gain traction. Most of the people who seek for health and wellness solution ends up paying three times of the original price, or getting something that is not designed for their way of life.
To increase access to better health and wellness , IMU, in collaboration with Youth Ventures Asia, have kickstarted their Startup Incubation Program under the School of Health Sciences (SOHS) to help aspiring student entrepreneurs starting their first innovative venture. Eight startups was successfully launched, reducing various gap. From digitalizing healthcare centres to improving the quality of education for Nurses: all of the solutions by the students entrepreneurs are designed to help us get better life quality.
Foodies Club: Mobile Healthy Food Popup
KayaCore: Alternative to Butter Kaya
Hako: Healthy Snack Subscription
Metacare4U: Virtual Health and Wellness Centres
FoodSensei: Your AI Nutrionist
Mediverse: Helping Nursing Students With Their Studies
BrainSpace: A Safe Space For Student to Study
ReploTe: Making Laboratories More Sustainable
“We want to push IMU to be an ecosystem that helps to make humanity better, with startups focusing on societal surplus” said Prof Gerry George, the Group Managing Director of IMU, “Today, IMU is a place that enables students to be entrepreneurial by identifying opportunities around them, prove the market feasibility, deliver impactful value to the customer and capture the share!”.
The Startup Incubation Program aims to help students to test out their business idea and validate it with the market. Students started by refining their proposed ideas using Design Thinking, identify market feasibility, create a Minimum Viable Product using no code tools and validate their ideas with customer via crowdfunding at Universitystartupchallenge.com. They also learn how to create an investor ready pitch deck and learn how to properly pitch to potential customers, partners or investors.
During the program, they were connected with mentors and industry expert, and at the end of the program, they were given a chance to pitch in front of a panel of judges that includes Prof Gerry George, the Group Managing Director of IMU, Prof Winnie Chee, the IMU's Pro Vice-Chancellor, Academic, Aiman Hakim, the founder Business Synergy and CEO of ISOSYNERGY HOLDINGS, an investment holding company, Nurul Amiera Binti Noor Azahar, the co founder of Youth Ventures Asia, and Hafiz “Do’Bong” Zurain, the Managing Director of Lorong Belakang.
“The Incubation Program helped me a lot in terms of gaining insights from the industry and also get me connected to some interesting mentors”, said Kogulan, the Founder of Metacare4U and also the emerge as the Winner of the SOHS IMU Startup Incubation Program. “There was a point where we were about to give up, but because of the support from the community and also because we truly want to solve the problem, we soldier on”, said Aish, who co-founded Mediverse with a fellow student that she met during the first day of the Startup Incubation Program, Wisdom.
With more youths kicking-off their entrepreneurial journey before graduation, the hope of having talented future leaders looks so bright. Aside from learning how to be entrepreneurial, starting a startup can also help youths to be more innovative, technology centric, resourceful and resilient to changes due to high critical thinking ability.