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Five start-ups clinch up to $250,000 each under Amplifier mentorship programme by Temasek Trust entities

Jovi Ho
Jovi Ho • 4 min read
Five start-ups clinch up to $250,000 each under Amplifier mentorship programme by Temasek Trust entities
The first cohort of five impact start-ups from Indonesia, Hong Kong, the Philippines and the US will each receive up to $250,000 of catalytic funding. Photo: Bloomberg
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Two Temasek Trust ecosystem entities have announced the first cohort of mentees for the Amplifier mentorship programme. The year-long programme aims to nurture impact start-ups to become commercially viable and scale positive impact in Asia.

The first cohort of five impact start-ups from Indonesia, Hong Kong, the Philippines and the US will each receive up to $250,000 of catalytic funding, supported by the Mastercard Center for Inclusive Growth.

They will also be mentored by over 30 global and regional industry leaders, according to the Centre for Impact Investing and Practices (CIIP) and Philanthropy Asia Alliance (PAA). 

CIIP and PAA unveiled the five names at the Philanthropy Asia Summit 2024 on April 15. The programme received 139 submissions from 35 countries spanning a range of themes, including energy and power, sustainable food and land conservation, ocean conservation, circularity and waste.

About the five start-ups

Based in the US, Circ is a certified B Corp on a mission to power clean closets with patented technology, recycling global fashion waste back into textiles. Circ’s innovative processes separate polycotton blended textile waste, recovering cellulosic and synthetic fibres back into the textile supply chain.

See also: Temasek Trust, DBS Foundation, UBS Optimus Foundation launch new digital impact marketplace

Based in Hong Kong, GRST manufactures sustainable lithium-ion batteries, free from toxic PFAS, known as “forever chemicals”, with low carbon footprint and high recyclability. Using a water-based electrode coating process, GRST promotes eco-friendly recycling to reduce the need for future mining and to create a circular battery economy.

Based in the Philippines, Mayani reshapes rural agricultural value chains by providing sustainable pathways to markets, boosting yield and climate resilience via quality agri inputs, and driving financial inclusion through alternative rural financing.

Based in Indonesia, B Corp-certified biotech company MYCL is developing a high-performance, low-carbon emission composite and leather-like material called Mylea. Made from agricultural crop waste bound together with mushroom mycelium, it is versatile with a wide range of applications, from footwear to automotive interiors and building materials.

See also: Temasek Trust and DBS Foundation launches marketplace directing private investments to impact-focused projects

Based in Indonesia, Sampangan provides carbon-negative products through its proprietary “carbonisation” technology, which converts all types of unsorted waste into sustainable materials. By transforming waste materials into versatile raw materials, Sampangan aims to become a global force for a circular economy, offering sustainable products from holistic waste management, especially in water treatment, agriculture and poultry industries.

Asia is a hotbed of innovation, with a thriving startup culture across many markets, says CIIP chief executive officer Dawn Chan. 

“We’re seeing more start-ups seeking to address complex social and environmental issues, but they too struggle with the ‘valley of death’, lacking access to expert guidance, advisors and funding beyond the initial seed round. Empowering these promising start-ups to achieve scalable and financially sustainable impact requires the efforts of the wider ecosystem,” Chan adds.

Amplifier was first announced at the 3rd Philanthropy Asia Summit in September 2023.

The programme is supported by over 30 partners, including industry partners Antler, CapitaLand Investment, Circulate Capital, EDP Renewables APAC, H&M Group, Sats, Schneider Electric, UOB Venture Management and Vickers Ventures.

The programme’s advisory partners are Accenture, Allen & Overy, Clifford Chance, Dechert, Deloitte Singapore, PwC Singapore, Rajah & Tann Asia and WongPartnership LLP.

Enterprise Singapore is the launch partner, while the programme delivery partners are ABC Impact, Deloitte Singapore, Temasek Life Sciences Accelerator and UOB.

“We are deeply grateful for the steadfast support from our extensive network of partners, which has been instrumental in the successful launch of the Amplifier,” says PAA chief executive officer Lim Seok Hui. 

“They each bring unique and invaluable contributions as mentors, reference clients, or funders— many of whom are eager to deepen their involvement beyond capital deployment,” she adds. “This collaborative approach not only enables mentees to scale their impactful solutions, but also paves the way for transformative change, particularly in this critical era where urgent climate action is imperative.”

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