IDA and SAP Collaborate to Accelerate Big Data Innovation and Adoption in Singapore

  • Signing of new Memorandum of Intent to support IDA’s Smart Nation initiatives
  • Co-innovation and development of ICT solutions with local SMEs and startups for local and international markets
  • Training the next-generation workforce with the skills and expertise in Big Data and Analytics

SingaporeThe Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore (IDA) and SAP Asia Pte Ltd, today signed a Memorandum of Intent (MOI) at the IDA Smart Nation: Data Works conference held at Hotel Fort Canning. The MOI aims to improve business and technical capabilities in the local Information Technology ecosystem, as Singapore transitions into the world’s first Smart Nation.
Under this two-year strategic collaboration, SAP will work with IDA alongside institutes of higher learning and industry partners to develop local manpower capabilities in Big Data and Analytics; and drive co-innovation and product development of InfocommTechnology (ICT) solutions with Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) and startups.

In addition, SAP will provide technology expertise and counsel, lead co-innovation workshops for enterprises and government agencies to catalyze the adoption of Big Data and Analytics, and assist to identify capability gaps in the local ICT sector to help further Singapore’s Smart Nation vision. SAP will also provide access to hardware and software as part of the collaboration for development of proof-of-concepts and pilot projects on Smart Nation with IDA and government agencies.

“Although there are many smart cities, Singapore is striving to be the world’s first Smart Nation. We want to work closely with key tech-industry partners such as SAP to develop professionals with high-value skills in important areas such as Data Sciences. The intelligent use of a variety of data can benefit citizens of all ages and companies of all sizes,” said Steve Leonard, Executive Deputy Chairman, IDA.

“SMEs and startups have a key role to play in a Smart Nation. By establishing an open and collaborative environment for multinational companies and local businesses, it encourages co-innovation and co-development of ICT solutions that are relevant, applicable and close to the hearts of Singaporeans,” said Kelly Tan, Managing Director for Singapore, SAP. “For this to happen, we also need to create a strong pipeline of ICT talents and equip the workforce of the future and existing professionals with relevant skill-sets that will contribute to Singapore’s Smart Nation vision.”

Currently in its 25th year of operation in the Asia Pacific Japan region, SAP has been in collaboration with customers, partners, governments and academic institutions to drive innovation and skills development. Together with IDA, SAP offers a range of programs and initiatives targeting students, teachers, young professionals, SMEs and local startups. These include:

  • National Infocomm Competition Face-Off (Data Analytics) and SAP Young Thinkers Programme: Launched last month, the SAP Young Thinkers Programme aims to interest, inspire, and equip youths with data analytics skills to design solutions to build Singapore into world’s first Smart Nation. Together with IDA, SAP and student volunteers from Singapore tertiary institutions will work with teachers to coach students from Infocomm Clubs at secondary schools and junior colleges in the first half of 2015 and to prepare them for IDA’s National Infocomm Competition Face-Off on Data Analytics in September.
  • SAP Center of Attachment: Technology is constantly evolving. Maintaining a competitive edge for sustained growth remains a top priority for Singapore. With this objective in mind, IDA developed the COA programme to nurture Singapore’s next generation of infocomm experts. The SAP Center of Attachment (SAP COA) will provide selected infocomm professionals in SAP’s partner ecosystem with the opportunity to attend 6-month on the job training programme and project work in data analytics applications leveraging SAP HANA. SAP HANA is an in-memory computing platform for building and deploying next-generation, real time applications and analytics. Companies sending employees for training at SAP COA are eligible to apply to IDA for co-funding the salary for the training period.
  • Code for Charity: Code for Charity is an IDA initiative to encourage youths to learn coding through their intrinsic motivation to do good. Earlier this year, close to 7000 students, teachers and parents across five polytechnics took on coding challenges to unlock $80,000 of funds pledged by SAP. The unlocked funds were donated to the respective polytechnics’ needy student fund. Moving forward, industry partners can also team up with students to work on charitable and community projects. SAP’s employees have volunteered for this initiative and will coach and mentor tertiary students.
  • Access to SAP HANA: SAP will work with IDA to provide access to SAP HANA and SAP BusinessObject platforms to support Big Data communities in their product development and proof-of-concept. Under this collaboration, startup communities, selected enterprise customers and government agencies will have access to SAP HANA and be able to test their Big Data applications on the SAP HANA platform for a Smart Nation.
  • SAP Accelerator Program: This global program helps startups adopt and develop new applications on SAP HANA and accelerate their go-to market strategies. Singapore-based startups, ZelRealm Interactive and YFind Technologies, have already benefitted from this program through the SAP Co-Innovation Lab Singapore, which was supported by technology partners including Cisco, Intel, NetApp and VMWare. In addition, SAP will assign dedicated business development and technical resources to work with local startup communities. SAP will also partner with local businesses to provide mentorship and potential seeding funds for investment. IDA will work with government agencies to provide SAP and start-ups with guidance on problem statements to guide innovations on product development that will solve industry problems for Smart Nation.

SAP also collaborates with top universities and institutions around the world on internship and scholarship programs. In Singapore, SAP University Alliances program has benefitted more than 2,000 students, while its SAP Research & Innovation Internship Program has created 87 internship placements for students to date. SAP has opened up 15 scholarship opportunities through its PhD Scholar Program in partnership with the National Research Foundation of Singapore, with 13 students awarded funding.

Additionally, SAP is committed to fostering entrepreneurship by inspiring students to leverage SAP technologies and form startup companies. Under the SAP University Alliances Student Entrepreneurship program, students can develop new solutions across SAP’s technologies, leveraging SAP HANA, the SAP Mobile Platform, and analytics capabilities. Launched globally in March, the Student Entrepreneurship program has been recently extended to National University of Singapore, School of Computing in September this year.

About Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore
The mission of the Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore (IDA) is to develop information technology and telecommunications within Singapore with a view to serve citizens of all ages and companies of all sizes. IDA does this by actively supporting the growth of innovative technology companies and start-ups in Singapore, working with leading global IT companies as well as developing excellent information technology and telecommunications infrastructure, policies and capabilities for Singapore. For more news and information, visit www.ida.gov.sg.

About SAP
As market leader in enterprise application software, SAP (NYSE: SAP) helps companies of all sizes and industries run better. From back office to boardroom, warehouse to storefront, desktop to mobile device – SAP empowers people and organizations to work together more efficiently and use business insight more effectively to stay ahead of the competition. SAP applications and services enable more than 263,000 customers to operate profitably, adapt continuously, and grow sustainably. For more information, visit www.sap.com.

For press information only:
Selina Yeo, SAP Asia Pacific Japan, +65 6664 4436, selina.yeo@sap.com , GMT +8
Zohira Nunis, IDA, +65 6211 3874, zohria_nunis@ida.gov.sg, GMT+8
Claire Chai, FleishmanHillard, +65 6424 6361, claire.chai@fleishman.com, GMT +8