How should a new startup find Singapore grants in 2023?


September 6, 2023
 min read
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It's a great time to start a business in Singapore. The economy is booming, and there's never been more investment available for startups. If you're thinking about starting your own business and thinking about getting funded, business grants can be an amazing way to get off the ground.

Startup funding is one of the most important and critical components for startups to succeed in their business. There are many sources of funding that can be found from external agencies. Finding funding for a startup can be achieved by seeking out investors or financial institutions. These entities will offer their capital in exchange for an equity stake in the startup. 

Startups have a plethora of options to raise funds from sources such as bank lending, debt financing, invoice financing and crowdfunding. 

Types of Singapore Startup Grants & Funding 

The startup funding scene in Singapore is still in its infancy. There are some different types of funding options available for startups that are looking to get their business off the ground.

Here's a quick look at some of the common types of funding for startups in Singapore. 

Venture Capital Firms

Venture capital firms are private equity firms that pool from wealthy individuals and institutions to invest in promising startups. They provide funding to companies with high growth potential and a high risk profile. The exit value of these companies must be high as well. Venture capitalists look for companies that have the potential to go public or be acquired by another company.

Venture capitalists invest in businesses with the expectation of a return on investment within five years. This is known as the "time horizon".

Why should you consider VC funding: VCs have a lot of money to invest and can finance your startup when few other sources are available. This is especially useful in the early stages of your business.

Private Equity Firms

Private equity firms are companies that invest in other companies. Vulture funds buy distressed companies. They attempt to improve them before reselling and making a profit. Private equity firms are often referred to as "leveraged buyout funds" because they use debt to finance their investments.

Private equity investors usually take large stakes in their portfolio companies and therefore have significant control over them. They also have access to resources such as the expertise of investment professionals. They can help manage their investments and give advice on how best to grow them further.

Why should you consider private equity funding: PE firms can provide capital, experience and connections. They typically have the resources to help you grow the startup business.

Incubators and Accelerators

Incubators and accelerators are programs that provide financial and mentoring support to startup companies. Incubators typically provide seed funding and office space. Accelerators also offer seed funding and often take an ownership stake in the company.

Incubators are typically run by universities or research institutes, while accelerators are run by private companies or venture capital firms.

Why should you consider joining an incubator and accelerator program: They are a great place to start if you’re looking for funding. The companies that are accepted into these programs typically have an idea and some early stage traction. 

Government Grants 

Best ways to find funding is through government grants in Singapore and funds from community groups. It allows the business to get off the ground with little or no investment. The main advantage of grant funding is that it does not require equity from the business owner.

This means that the company does not need to give up any part of its ownership for the funds. This is a very attractive proposition for entrepreneurs who are looking for funding but do not want to give up control.

Why should you consider government grant funding: Grant funding is useful because it often comes with additional support and assistance from the government agency or institution offering it. This assistance can include technical expertise and advice on how best to use the funds effectively.

The Enterprise Singapore Grant Portal is the place to go for funding

Business grants portal in Singapore provides business grants to startups and SMEs in Singapore. Each year, they offer over $100 million worth of free funding through their various schemes.

  • The New Industry Growth Scheme (NIGS) is designed to aid companies in the commercialization of new technologies or products. It does this by providing financial assistance and support services. These services include mentorship programmes and networking events with industry players. 
  • Another popular scheme is the Innovation & Productivity Credit (IPC). Businesses that have been in operation for more than 12 months but less than three years can avail of this scheme. It offers an up-front tax rebate on eligible investments made over a period of five years when investing in research & development activities. It also includes capital expenditure incurred on acquiring machinery/equipment used directly within their manufacturing operations.
  • The Productivity Solutions Grant (PSG) was launched in April 2018 to help businesses enhance their processes with technology. The PSG grant in Singapore offers financial aid to business owners. This supports projects to help adopt pre-scoped IT solutions, equipment and consultancy services. The goal of this is to improve productivity.

The portal lists various grants that you can apply for. There are also some grants that are only available to enterprises with a certain amount of turnover.

Business Grants in Singapore for startups

If you don't qualify for the grants mentioned above, you may want more freedom and flexibility with your money. There are other options available.

One of these is the Innovation & Enterprise Development Scheme (I&EDS), which provides funding for projects related to innovation and entrepreneurship development. The scheme has two sub-schemes:

The Innovative Ideas Scheme (IIS) offers funding of up to S$50,000 (US$36,000) for projects. These projects must aim to improve business models and processes or efficiency in the workplace. Applicants must be able to clearly demonstrate how their innovation will benefit their organisation's productivity and capability development.

The Entrepreneurial Ideas Scheme (EIS) provides funding up to S$100,000 (US$72,000) for start-up companies. They must have unique ideas and technologies that have the potential to be profitable.

Singapore Grants Navigator 

If you are looking for funding from SME grants in Singapore, then we recommend that you read through our resources guide for applying for an Innovation Grant on the business grants portal.

At Devhaus, we offer advisory services for Enterprise Singapore Grants

Here's how you can claim up to 70% subsidy for your next brand and marketing transformation strategy with us. 

A video guide to help companies in Singapore aply for business grants in Singapore

If you want to know if your business qualifies for these schemes and you need help finding more information about different types of business grants, don't forget yo contact us at

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