Sri Lanka Wins Big at the Global Startup Awards 2021

November 29, 2021

Sri Lanka emerges Winner of the  Best Co-Working Space Category Globally, Winner of the Ecosystem Hero of the Year Category in the SAARC Region, and Best Newcomer Category in the SAARC Region.

The Information and Communication Technology Agency (ICTA) is the apex ICT institution of the Government mandated to drive digital transformation with a vision to make Sri Lanka a digitally inclusive nation. In line with the Digital Economy Strategy, ICTA develops, supports, and helps nurture the startup ecosystem of Sri Lanka.

ICTA recently announced that it recognizes Hatch for emerging as winner of the  Best Co-Working Space Category at the Global Startup Awards 2021. In addition, Mrs. Nevindaree  Premarathne, Senior Manager Startup Ecosystem Development –  ICTA, emerged winner of the Ecosystem Hero of the Year Category in the SAARC Region, and NIFTRON won the Best Newcomer category in the SAARC Region.  

Global Startup Awards 2021, held in Copenhagen, Denmark, from November 16 to November 17, 2021, is the world’s largest independent startup ecosystem competition, recognizing the best startups, individuals, VCs,      co-working spaces, accelerators, and incubator programs from all over the world. The Global Startup Awards seeks to find, publicly recognize, and connect dynamic startups on different verticals and maturity levels, investors, and influential founders, working closely with hundreds of local partners and connecting the shapers of the future from all around the world.

Hatch, a Sri Lankan co-working space, startup incubator, and accelerator, was awarded the Best Co-Working Space globally. It is the first time a Sri Lankan or a South Asian organization has secured a win in this category, marking a momentous milestone for Sri Lanka’s startup ecosystem.

Mrs. Nevindaree  Premarathne, Senior Manager Startup Ecosystem Development –  ICTA, has been instrumental in driving projects such as ‘Spiralation Incubator’, ‘Disrupt Asia Exhibition and Innovation Festival ’ and ‘StartupSL Platform’ to help nurture and develop the startup ecosystem in Sri Lanka. Her passion and dedication to building startups in Sri Lanka has brought great recognition to the organization, country, and industry. She has contributed immensely to the startup ecosystem of Sri Lanka while driving change to create a better future for entrepreneurs in Sri Lanka.

NIFTRON is a thriving startup specializing in providing ‘Blockchain as a Service’ and is  an alumni of the Spiralation Incubator. NIFTRON  also emerged winners in the National Finals of the Entrepreneurship World Cup (EWC) 2021.  

Sri Lanka received this recognition among  20,000 applicants competing globally from 122 countries across 11 regions. This recognition is a timely reflection of South Asia’s startup ecosystem’s evolution, phenomenal growth, and capacity. Furthermore, it showcases the world that the emerging startup ecosystem in Sri Lanka is advanced, powerful and fosters the next generation of startups. Since 2010, ICTA has supported developing startup ecosystems by creating awareness, instilling entrepreneurship culture, incubation, market access, early-stage seed funding, consulting, and mentoring startups. In addition, initiatives such as removing impediments, credit framework, startupSL platform, government software sourcing from startups are an asset to all the tech startups in the country introduced to encourage more new tech-related businesses emerging in Sri Lanka.