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Malaysian HR tech start-up US$7 million

One of Malaysia’s leading Software-as-a-service (SaaS) HR start-ups, has reportedly raised US$7 million in its Series A financing round, bringing the total funds raised to date to US$8.6 million.

With the newly injected funds, the start-up is looking to grow its team to support ongoing product innovation and development plans, in addition, to accelerating its Asia-Pacific expansion plans, according to an official statement.

A Malaysian and three Koreans co-founded the company, looking to automate manual and cumbersome HR practices for small and mid-sized businesses by connecting HR, payroll, and employee benefits on a mobile-first online platform.

Some examples of its service offerings include centralized calendar functions, automated hiring and termination processes, comprehensive database of employee records, and distribution mechanisms for company announcements.

The start-up claims to have served over 5,000 companies to date. It has offices in Kuala Lumpur, Singapore, Taipei, and Seoul.

Malaysia to get better for start-ups

An integrated innovation centre for start-ups was reportedly launched in Malaysia recently. The aim is to help start-ups collaborate with corporates to get access, coaching, funding and mentoring in one space.

Featuring co-working and co-living spaces, offices, a digital campus and a venture capital hub, various other facilities such as an auditorium, exhibition space, media lab, restaurant and gym are also being developed to ensure the centre is a ‘one-stop’ support network for Malaysia’s start-up community.

The project will be developed in two phases and is expected to be fully operational by the end of 2020. The centre is positioning itself as an inclusive and attractive facility to promote innovation, boost the Malaysian start-up ecosystem and help propel the country’s digital transformation efforts in sectors such as manufacturing, agriculture, infrastructure, and services.

Exchange ideas

The innovation incubator will be the focal point for collaborators vital to the growth of the ecosystem such as venture capitalists (VCs), mentors, technology partners, tech start-ups/scaleups and corporations. HLX’s initial focus is on Artificial Intelligence (AI)/High Performance Computing (HPC), fintech and manufacturing tech.

The General Manager of the centre stated that start-ups will gain access to a complete innovation ecosystem that will accelerate their transformation, enable innovation and help them scale-up on the value chain, while the corporates will get to engage with start-ups in a more meaningful and sustainable manner.

On the talent front, the centre’s academy will provide training, mentoring and industry placements. By partnering with technical experts to lead certification and talent upskilling programmes, the academy is working to build a pipeline of industry-ready innovators and creators, while at the same time, match their skill sets to key partners from corporations and the government.

New council

Malaysia’s Minister of Communications and Multimedia was present at the launch, where he announced the formation of the Malaysia Innovative Policy Council (MIPC). MIPC is an entity made up of industry experts, experienced start-ups, funding partners and other government agencies, as reported earlier by OpenGov Asia.

Chaired by MDEC, the council’s objectives are to promote policies and regulations designed to encourage and drive more innovation in a bid to boost Malaysia’s overall digital economy.

Apart from serving as a platform for the private sector to propose initiatives based on policy and regulatory challenges, the MIPC will also provide advice, input, recommendation and facilitation for the proposed initiatives and establish and oversee task forces to implement the initiatives.

MDEC’s CEO noted that growing the nation’s digital economy requires deeper collaboration from both the public and private sectors. Leaders strongly believe that MIPC will further drive better synergetic partnerships between the sectors and sharpen the nation’s efforts in creating a vibrant and sustainable tech ecosystem.

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