In an announcement, IdeaSpace said it is investing about $20,000 in each of the three startups – Airship Logistics, Cocotel, and Experience Philippines – that it helped incubate under a rigorous four-month acceleration program.
Airship Logistics is a ready-to-use, low-cost end-to-end solution targeted at courier firms looking to improve their operations management. Cocotel, on the other hand, is a tech-based aggregator offering property management, construction and design support, and marketing services to value-for-money resorts and hotels.
The third startup, Experience Philippines, is a community travel platform themed, gasified travel experiences to domestic and foreign tourists, according to the press release for IdeaSpace.
The three firms emerged at the top in this year’s startup competition, where 20 founders worked with mentors to refine their business and financial mode, product, operations, and communications.
The three teams will receive P1 million (about $20,000) investment each, in exchange for equity, along with access to exclusive learning sessions, free use of office space, and linkages to corporate partners, strategic partner resources, and investors.
“IdeaSpace’s investments reflect our optimism towards sectors that we see as potential sunrise industries for the Philippines, such as ecommerce and tourism,’ said the accelerator’s president, Butch Meily.
He disclosed further that the three startups are already gaining traction, even attracting interest from larger local corporations.
“They provide a promising view of the kinds of businesses, solutions, and services the Philippines will be able to offer as our own digital economy matures,” Meily added.
In terms of venture funding, Philippine startups continue to lag behind their counterparts in the Southeast Asia region, with Singapore and Indonesia taking the bulk of the total startup funding for this year, according to reports.
However, there is a glimmer of hope for startups in the country as the latest e-Conomy report released by Google, Temasek, and Bain & Co showed that the Philippines’ digital economy is expected to grow to $25 billion by 2025.
Meily said startups can capitalise on that forecast by capturing the opportunity presented by a country’s growing digital economy.
“We’re looking for resilient, creative, and disciplined entrepreneurs who understand the pain points they’re trying to solve in industry and society and who are willing to do the work to build a scalable, sustainable business,” said IdeaSpace Executive Director Diane Eustaquio.
To date, IdeaSpace has mentored and supported 91 startups under its incubation and acceleration program and has invested over P200 million ($4 million) worth of support into the Philippine startup ecosystem. It has supported First Pacific, Metro Pacific Investments Corporation, Metro Pacific Tollways Corporation, Meralco, Smart Communication, among others.