Monday, March 25, 2019

Young Bangla, Microsoft team up to help Bangladeshi ICT start-ups

  • Senior Correspondent,
    Published: 2018-10-07 13:32:10 BdST


Bangladesh’s leading youth platform Young Bangla has teamed up with the global tech giant Microsoft to help young risk-taking ICT-based entrepreneurs to grow.

Five such start-up groups were awarded Tk 500,000 each, alongside additional support for expansion on Saturday, on the final day of a four-day summit in Dhaka.

The summit styled ‘Young Bangla Microsoft Summit’ saw over 250 aspiring teams from different parts of the country competing to secure a slot of the top five.

The purpose of this initiative is to give ICT based entrepreneurs much-needed support for further growth, according to the Awami League’s research wing Centre for Research and Information (CRI), which operates as the secretariat of Young Bangla.

The top spots were awarded for developing software for Bangla sign language (team BSL), connecting veterinary doctors with rural farmers (Gorur Doctor), using urban farming technologies to supplement traditional farming (Micro Beats), making lives better for older citizens (Blaze Warrior), and introducing a bicycle service titled CHOLO to evade traffic on city streets (Finance Wizard).

“We always intend to work to build a bridge between the youth and the policymakers so that voices of the rising generation is properly reflected in national policies,” Radwan Mujib Siddiq, a CRI trustee, and grandson of Bangladesh’s founding father Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, said at the event.

He said the joint initiative taken by Microsoft and Young Bangla has “opened up a new world of opportunity for the grassroots of the country”.

“This joint platform will surely help to fulfil the goal of building a Bangladesh with no discrimination and which ensures equality for all.”

The five winning groups were selected through rigorous scrutiny from 20 teams who presented their ideas in front of an expert panel of judges.

The panel included Radwan Mujib, Microsoft Bangladesh Managing Director Sonia Bashir Kabir, CRI Executive Director Sabbir Bin Shams and State Minister for Power, Energy and Mineral resources Nasrul Hamid Bipu.