Shell LiveWIRE Sarawak welcomes inspiring entrepreneurs

Shell LiveWIRE Sarawak welcomes inspiring entrepreneurs

Len Talif (fourth left) in a group photo with five winners of the 2023 Shell LiveWIRE Entrepreneurs in Sarawak.

KUCHING: Oil and gas company Shell is no stranger to the entrepreneurial ecosystem in Malaysia with its flagship enterprise development program Shell LiveWIRE.

This programme, which was launched in Sabah in 2015 and in Sarawak in 2016, aims to inspire young entrepreneurs to innovate and produce real business solutions that meet today’s socio-economic needs. From 2022, Shell LiveWIRE was expanded to include entrepreneurs from Peninsular Malaysia.

The program strengthens local economies around the world by promoting entrepreneurship and developing entrepreneurs. Five businesses in Sarawak were announced as winners of Shell LiveWIRE 2023 at the state level on 31 July.

They are EB Tech, Myscripts Tech, Pungu Borneo, Raziv Ramzon of Rukun TV and Professor Dr. Parveen Kaur, selected from over 60 participants this year.

“TEGAS is proud to partner with Shell Malaysia as part of our commitment to empowering our local start-ups and social enterprises to grow their businesses.

“We look forward to continuing this collaboration which aims to boost our local economy through entrepreneurship, innovation and meaningful employment in Sarawak,” said Deputy Minister of Urban Planning, Land Administration and Environment Datuk Len Talif Saleh, who presented the awards of winners at the awards ceremony.

Participants went through a comprehensive bootcamp where 10 selected finalists advanced to the final pitching competition. Here, entrepreneurs were judged based on their business presentations that demonstrate their drive to develop their business ideas based on their comprehensive business plans and then five winners were selected.

The winners received seed grants of RM10,000 and an additional RM5,000 from Tegas. They will also receive a year of business training to grow their business plans into full-fledged businesses and access to the facilities and opportunities provided by Tegas.

They will also be given the opportunity to connect with the global LiveWIRE ecosystem and share their knowledge with entrepreneurs around the world, while having a chance to compete in the annual Shell Global Top Ten Innovators Awards.

Choong Yen Li, Sarawak Gas General Manager, Shell Malaysia Upstream, shared his enthusiasm for the outcome of the programme.

“I am proud of our LiveWIRE program which provides a platform for budding entrepreneurs to not only empower themselves to build their businesses but also create jobs for the surrounding communities while contributing to the socio-economic growth of Sarawak and the nation.

“I encourage entrepreneurs to participate in this program, which provides access to knowledge, skills, networks and resources that will help turn their entrepreneurial ideas into successful ventures,” she said.

Utilization of Sarawak’s natural resources

One of this year’s finalists is Associate Professor Dr Parveen Kaur, who capitalizes on Sarawak’s own popular natural resource for its health benefits.

“It will be Sarawak’s flagship as it is Sarawak’s own popular natural resource. Many studies have found an abundance of nutrients in this plant.

“The social enterprise model will be used to help local women farmers plant, harvest and earn a sustainable income,” she said, adding that the idea is in its infancy and with the right support from the government, the potential is huge .”

Parveen wins SLW 2023 Sarawak.

And as her journey with Shell LiveWIRE has just begun, Parveen believes it will be impactful as the program outlined for the company was very thorough and organized with a clear aim to succeed within a social enterprise framework.

“The program helps local communities and the poor work together hand in hand for humanity and sustainable lifestyles. It is a renowned one-of-a-kind program in Malaysia and is offered worldwide.”

Praveen is seen with members of the local communities.

On her advice to others? “Take it with full confidence that you can do it! Life is full of ups and downs and if we adopt the culture of safety in our own comfort zones then we will not try new things and see its failures and successes.

“Sarawak and Malaysia have a lot of resources for budding entrepreneurs, all you have to do is step forward and with all the huge support, you will never fail.”

A revolutionary pharmacy system

One of the finalists for Shell LiveWIRE 2023 is MyScripts, a revolutionary medication management solution that enables pharmacies to easily take a proactive approach to customer care.

The system enables pharmacies to optimize workflow and inventory and deliver personalized healthcare to their patients through clinical tools and automated messaging integration.

In addition, MyScripts also has a patient portal that gives patients themselves an overview of their own medications, including key details such as how to take them, when refills are due, any potential side effects, and more.

An example of the MyScripts user interface for a pharmacist.

But how did this venture begin? It started as an idea three years ago when pharmacists Kevin Ong and Sharon Lee first had a vision to solve a series of problems facing both local pharmacies and customers.

“As US-trained pharmacists, we were familiar with software designed specifically for pharmacies to manage their day-to-day operations, and we decided to apply that knowledge to the design of MyScripts, which meets the needs of our local pharmacies, our regulations, and is equipped with drug information that is specific to Malaysia,” they said.

“We then decided to sign up for the MDEC IdeaKita 2022 program with an open mind and they completed the program as the 3rd place winner out of hundreds of participants across the country.

“The MyScripts Minimum Viable Product (MVP) finally went live this past June, and its alpha testing should begin in the next few months.”

Ong (left) and Lee first had the vision to solve a series of problems facing both local pharmacies and customers.

The duo noted that over 10 million Malaysians are on chronic medication according to the 2015 National Survey on Medication Use (NSUM) and this number is expected to increase each year with the global phenomenon of population aging, meaning that more and more more of our population is likely to be chronic drug users with each passing year.

“Imagine having to manage your own set of three different types of daily medications, taken at different times of the day, some of which need to be taken with food, while others need to be taken on an empty stomach – this is a complex task for just for everyone,” Lee explained.

“Multiply that complexity by the average number of customers a pharmacy deals with on a regular basis, perhaps in the hundreds or thousands, and it makes it rather impossible for the pharmacy to manage these patients’ medications for them without a system.”

Lee was seen giving a health talk at Aeon Kuching Sentral Mall during a joint event with a local chiropractic clinic.

Lee also added that most pharmacies in Malaysia keep records manually and respond to customer care, possibly because there is currently no system designed specifically for pharmacies, making them unable to manage patients who chronically take multiple medications.

MyScripts was born to ultimately create change in patient care by making pharmacies proactive in managing their customers and patients themselves to take responsibility for their medications, ultimately improving patient health outcomes.

“The Shell LiveWIRE program opened our eyes to the world of startups and enabled MyScripts to have a clearer understanding of how to navigate this journey with valuable fundraising insights for a new startup just entering the tech world .

“In addition to this, the mentoring we received through the program really helped us improve our business performance. Through this program, we were also given ample opportunities to network with like-minded people from various industries.

“Our future plans include building an ecosystem of healthcare providers and patients through our platform with the ultimate goal of improving the health of Malaysians.”

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