The Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC) announced today it has awarded MYR6.2 million (US$1.5 million) worth of grants to 66 small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and service sector companies.

The grants were awarded under the government’s Pelan Jana Semula Ekonomi Negara 2020 Smart Automation Grant (SAG) initiative, as per a Digital News Asia report.

The 66 local recipients hailed from a wide range of sectors, including wholesale and retail trade, tourism and education.

Released in July 2020, the SAG was launched to encourage companies in the service sector to adopt digitalisation processes and automate their business.

The grant is part of the larger Penjana initiative aiming to encourage the implementation of digital tools in SMEs. The initiative is key to MDEC’s mission to assist SMEs and mid-tier companies to digitalise and thrive in the fourth industrial revolution, where digital processes are set to be the norm.

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“The outcome-based matching grant will assist these companies to accelerate automation and achieve productive results, such as increased revenues; savings in business costs; reduction of the process time cycle and man-hours spent; and creating new sources of growth,” said Raymond Siva, CMO and Head of Digital Investments and Brand at MDEC.

Covering a 4-month duration, successful applicants are allocated up to half of their total project cost, subject to a limit of MYR200,000 (US$49,300). The remaining amount will be distributed based on the fulfilment of agreed key deliverables.

“The socio-economic impact of the global pandemic had forced businesses to put on their digital thinking hat and bring forward their digitalisation plans. To support them, the government, through MDEC, developed this specific matching grant for SMEs and mid-tier companies to provide them with the ability to build their digital capabilities and capacities,” said Surina Shukri, CEO, MDEC.

“The goal is to ensure they are ready to make that leap into the digital era, as this is part of MDEC’s efforts to realise the vision of Malaysia 5.0 and open up the digital economy for the many,” she added.

Collectively, the Malaysian government had allocated a total of MYR10 million (US$2.45 million) for MDEC under the Penjana initiative to spur the digitalisation efforts of local SMEs.

Image Credit: Unsplash


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