Tech billionaires launch internship program for Singaporean undergrads

The undergraduate students, who will be finalized for the internship program, will be able to gain experience from some top Chinese tech companies


Singapore-based private equity firm Tembusu Partners recently launched the Singapore Valley Awards, which is a new internship program that will provide the Singaporean undergrads with the opportunity to acquire necessary work experience in some of the top tech companies in China.

Tembusu Partners is facilitating the award along with US$2.5 million funding that has come from coming from several Chinese tech billionaires including founder Pang Shengdong, Shanghai Kingnet Technology founder and CEO Wang Yue, and Alibaba co-founders James Sheng and Eddie Wu.

The chairman of Retech Technology, Calvin Cheng has also provided a hefty amount of funding for the program.

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"We hope that by sponsoring Singapore students for internships at Alibaba, Tencent, and the top VCs like Matrix Partners, Singapore students can get inspired and come back to Singapore and create their own successful start-ups," posted Singaporean entrepreneur Calvin Cheng on his Facebook account. "We also believe that we should look more to China for tech innovation – some of the biggest and best tech companies are now Chinese," he added.

GGV Capital, Matrix Partners China, and travel booking site Qunar are also supporting the initiative.

To be eligible to apply for the Awards, the undergraduate students will have to be Singaporean citizens or permanent residents of the country. They will also have to be in their third or fourth year of full-time study at one of Singapore's six publicly funded universities. The students, who will be shortlisted for the program, will then have to pitch business ideas to a panel of judges, consisting of 10 prominent members of Singapore and China's tech and investment communities.

Other than the investors mentioned above, Qunar founder Zhuang Chenchao, Insignia Ventures Partners CEO and former Sequoia partner Tan Yinglan, Tembusu chairman Andy Lim, Matrix managing partner David Su, and GGV managing partner Jenny Lee will also be on the panel.

Maximum nine students, that manage to impress the judges, will win the opportunity to enter three-month long internships in China that will start next year. They will also receive a grant of about US$1,500 per month each over the course of their internship. The scheme's first application period ends on October 16. To apply you can visit here.

This article was first published on September 20, 2017