WeWork to build first global foodtech accelerator in Thailand
Thailand will be home to the world’s first food technology accelerator as WeWork Labs, “The We Company,” the startup arm of the co-workspace unicorn from the U.S., announced it is partnering with Thailand’s National Innovation Agency (NIA), Thai Union Group, and Mahidol University in the ambitious new venture.
Named SPACE-F, the project is intended to “provide innovative services and support to empower the next generation of innovation in FoodTech,” WeWork executives said. The venture will have an incubator track for startups in their initial stages, and an accelerator track for startups beginning to grow.
“The time is ripe for FoodTech advancements, and along with the perfect partners for this program, we are very excited to select Thailand as the first stop to launch our partnered Food Labs program and help bring to life some of today’s brightest ideas right here in Thailand,” said Adrian Tan, Head of Labs, Southeast Asia for WeWork.
The Thai government is emphasizing food, food technologies, and advances in processed foods as a vital industry in its advanced development strategy for the Kingdom. With its strong agriculture sector and globally acclaimed cuisine, policymakers believe they can leverage national strengths in an innovative future.
Startups are a promising pathway to achieve that goal, according to government officials. “Thailand’s startup scene is real, not just some fantasy, as evident by the large size of investments in local startups but also smaller deals for lesser startups in pre-series A funding,” said Pun-Arj Chairatana, executive director of the National Innovation Agency.
To stimulate the growth of startups, Thailand needs to create a welcoming startup environment, and the country is taking steps to achieve that, he added.
Photo courtesy of https://www.techinasia.com/wework-launch-foodtech-startup-accelerator-thailand Photo credit: Eloise Ambursley