Government commits $2.8m to groom start-ups, talent in supply chain and logistics

The Supply Chain & Logistics Innovation Playground (Sclip) was set up by industry body Supply Chain Asia.
The Supply Chain & Logistics Innovation Playground (Sclip) was set up by industry body Supply Chain Asia.PHOTO: SUPPLY CHAIN ASIA

SINGAPORE - Government agencies Spring Singapore and Workforce Singapore (WSG) have put aside S$2.8 million to groom the next generation of start-ups in supply chain and logistics, and develop related talent and capabilities in small and medium enterprises (SMEs).

This will be done through what is called the Supply Chain & Logistics Innovation Playground (Sclip), set up by industry body Supply Chain Asia, said Senior Minister of State for Trade and Industry and National Development Koh Poh Koon on Wednesday (Aug 30).

Speaking at Sclip's official opening, Dr Koh said the platform "will incubate start-ups, as well as pilot and deploy innovative logistics solutions to help transform the industry".

He said: "For Singapore to stay relevant, we will need to build a collaborative ecosystem for large companies and start-ups alike, to develop and adopt innovative supply chain solutions.

"Sclip will help strengthen Singapore's position as Southeast Asia's leading logistics hub."

The new unit will groom 12 start-ups over the next 18 months "and support them in piloting solutions for the logistics industry", said Dr Koh.

Supply chain and operational analytics firm Cosmiqo International, which was founded in August 2013, is one of the 12 start-ups.

Dr Koh said through Sclip, Cosmiqo has teamed up with Infolog - a software solutions company specialising in the distribution, logistics and supply chain industries - and National University of Singapore, to develop and pilot autonomous robots.

"If successful, these robots can be deployed in warehouses to support picking processes to enhance the productivity of warehouse operations," he noted.

Sclip already has 27 partners specialising in supply chain and logistics innovation solutions under its wing, and more than half are start-ups, "while the rest comprise shippers, logistics service providers, solution vendors, as well as academic and research institutions".

Dr Koh added: "By bringing these partners together, Sclip will continue to foster collaboration and aim to generate more than S$50 million in business ventures over the next 18 months."

WSG, together with Supply Chain Asia, is also rolling out the Professional Conversion Programme (PCP) for e-commerce supply chain Professionals, said Dr Koh, "which will help develop a pipeline of local professionals to support the growing e-commerce sector".

Through the PCP, up to 60 mid-career individuals, over the next two years, will acquire new skill sets in areas such as merchandising, sourcing, procurement, and account management to take on job roles in the e-commerce supply chain.

Singapore's logistics industry is expected to add 2,000 new PMET jobs by 2020, according to the Logistics Industry Transformation Map launched in November last year.