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Ideation program also piloted among 90 high school students in parallel with annual Smart TechTalk event over a weekend filled with entrepreneurship programs.

Phnom Penh, 14th October 2019 – SALA was selected as the most promising seed-stage startup at the Smart TechTalk & Seedstars Pitch event at the Institute of Technology of Cambodia (ITC) yesterday. By winning the Seedstars’ Best Startup Cambodia award, SALA stands to receive up to 1 million USD in funding at Seedstars’ Asia Summit in November and the Global Summit in Switzerland next year.
Sok Leap, the founder and CEO of SALA, a school management platform designed for K-12 and universities with features, such as student management, HR and billing, payment and school administration said, “Following the success of Joonaak Delivery and the multitude of experiences they received last year, I hope we will not only make Cambodia proud but leverage the various network as well as investment opportunities presented to us during the regional and world summits.”
SALA was chosen from 8 finalists who pitched their digital business ideas to a panel of local and international judges. Earlier in the day, a team of four high school students from Liger Leadership Academy beat 5 other teams to win the inaugural Seedstars Lean Launchpad, a pilot program to encourage ideation and an entrepreneurial mindset among Grade 9 to 12 students. The annual Smart TechTalk rounded off the weekend that received support from the Capacity Building and R&D Fund.
All three technopreneurship initiatives where carried out in partnership with the National Institute of Posts, Telecoms and ICT (NIPTICT), the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sport (MoEYS), and the Ministry of Posts and Telecommunication (MPTC).
“This is one of my favorite weekends of the year as it brings all these incredible young people together with some of the best and brightest from the region. Watching the ideas flow at events like this makes us so proud to be part of Cambodia’s digital journey, where we can support the unleashing of dynamic talent, passion and energy onto the region’s tech scene,” said Jonathan Yap, Head of Regulatory & Corporate Affairs at Smart Axiata.
At the TechTalk, international keynote speakers from Amazon Web Services, Grab and Leaderonomics captivated the crowd on Sunday morning, while in the afternoon, startup-focused keynotes by Smart, Beenext Capital and Kid Hero enlightened the dynamic crowd consisting of students, academia, startup founders, private sector as well as government representatives. All presentations centered around ‘Together Towards a Digital Future’ which was the theme of BarCamp ASEAN 2019 as well, also held at ITC over the same weekend. BarCamp is fully supported by Smart Axiata along with NIPTICT, MoEYS and MPTC.
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