SINGAPORE: Companies under the Scale-up SG programme, which aims to groom high-growth local businesses into global leaders, will receive more support in terms of participation costs – up from 70 per cent to 80 per cent – for a year until September 2021.
This was announced by Trade and Industry Minister Chan Chun Sing on Monday (Sep 14), who said the “one-off” boost in support will alleviate cash flow pressures of participating firms during the current pandemic-fueled downturn.
It is also part of an “overall suite of targeted measures” for thriving companies, he added.
“Amidst these difficult circumstances, we are not going to slow down our pace to help our promising companies to conquer global markets. In fact, we are going to step up our pace,” he said following a tour at semiconductor and electronics industry solutions provider AEM Holdings on Monday morning with Manpower Minister Josephine Teo and Senior Minister of State for Health Koh Poh Koon.
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First announced during Budget 2019, the Scale-up SG programme aims to help companies with proven track records and strong growth ambitions to scale up rapidly. It kicked off last July with 25 participants and announced a second batch of 18 local companies in December 2019.
It comprises three phases over two and a half years, in which the companies get to work with partners from McKinsey & Company and PwC Singapore, and also learn from one another to strategise and execute business acceleration plans.
Currently, Enterprise Singapore pays up to 70 per cent of these costs, with companies picking up the rest of the tab.
Mr Chan also said the programme aims to help 50 more companies over the next two years.
“Our promise to all our promising companies is, so long as they have the ambition (and) drive, we will find the means to help them realise their dreams to penetrate the global markets, and to grow from strength to strength,” he added.
“We will find the resources necessary to support our companies to grow so that they can create more and better jobs for fellow Singaporeans.”
Citing AEM as an example, Mr Chan said the firm has been able to grow its capabilities and global presence. Through that process, it has helped to chip in and build an “ecosystem of precision engineering capabilities (and) suppliers” involving many other local small and medium-sized enterprises, he added.
“This is how we see ourselves growing together as one community,” the minister said.
Under the programme, participating businesses have formed partnerships and engaged in knowledge-sharing. They have also been creating jobs as they continue to grow despite the current crisis.
Mr Chan mentioned the example of childcare service provider EtonHouse International, which is offering more than 100 positions to recently retrenched staff from the Singapore Airlines (SIA) Group.
Q&M Dental Group, another participant, also partnered Workforce Singapore to roll out a Place-and-Train programme for mid-career dental surgery assistants in July.
Said Mr Chan: “So this is how we intend to help one another through this very difficult time, with the Government partnering our companies, and also our companies partnering the unions to see how we can place the displaced workers from one company or one sector to … adjacent sectors so that they can continue to preserve the hard-won capabilities that they have built up over the years."