Kuala Lumpur, 18 January 2011 – Cradle Fund Sdn Bhd, manager of the Cradle Investment Programme (CIP) under is kicking off the new year and new decade with a broader scope of work, besides continuing to drive the technopreneur landscape with an additional RM50 million allocation by the Ministry of Finance under the 10th Malaysia Plan.
Nazrin Hassan, Chief Executive Officer of Cradle Fund Sdn Bhd, says he is heartened by the Government’s acknowledgement of Cradle’s track record. “Last year, the Ministry of Finance commended our work in early stage funding for technopreneurs, and expressed their confidence by giving us the opportunity to expand our scope and provided an additional allocation of RM50 million for 2011 and 2012 to fund our grants and activities,” he said.
“Up to last year, we had a significant focus on making sure there were enough budding entrepreneurs being funded every year, and our grant recipients, have achieved a record commercialization rate of 53%, one of the world’s highest for a Government grant fund. To date, we have approved a total of 434 pre-seed grant recipients. For this year we are allocating funds for 30 pre-seed recipients of the CIP Catalyst & U-CIP Catalyst grant, and 36 seed recipients of the CIP 500 grant.” Nazrin said. The CIP 500 grant, Malaysia’s first pure technology commercialisation fund, was launched in Oct 2009.
“Beginning 2011, we will be focusing significantly more of our energy on the quality and outcomes of our grant recipients, as these areas will become the criteria that the Government will use to measure our performance in the coming years. As such, we will work on growing the ecosystem mechanisms that help improve an entrepreneur’s growth prospects in the 3 years after commercialisation, besides also playing a more active role in contributing to the implementation of Malaysia’s innovation policy,” added Nazrin.
“For example, we will be managing the Entrepreneurship Enhancement Training Program (EETP) announced by the Prime Minister during the tabling of the Budget last year, In addition, as Cradle continues to grow, we will also be transitioning towards market-oriented funding, such as early stage loans or other funding assistance for local companies that are ready to expand regionally or internationally, as well as venture capitalism.” Nazrin elaborated.
“With governmental efforts such as the setting up of Talent Corp, it is clear that the Prime Minister, who is also the Finance Minister, is very serious about getting talented Malaysians to come home. This augurs well for a stronger ecosystem of innovation in Malaysia, and Cradle will be working with the Ministry of Finance and Bank Negara to encourage more private sector participation in funding, such as tax incentive for angel investors,” Nazrin added.