The Malaysian Research Accelerator for Technology and Innovation (MRANTI) has supported 191 Malaysian companies to accelerate their growth since 2020.

MRANTI said in a statement on Tuesday that a rapidly growing number of local innovators are getting a boost from the MRANTI in advancing their research and development (R&D) and entering new markets especially in the last 12 months.

According to the statement, in 2023, the National Technology and Innovation Sandbox (NTIS) spearheaded by MRANTI has enabled 27 Malaysian technology companies to commercialize 27 products, turning in MYR 87.2 million ($18.67 million) in sales.

Meanwhile, 191 Malaysian companies have been accelerated since 2020 through 11 Sandboxes.

It is noted that NTIS allows researchers, innovators and entrepreneurs with products at a mature technical readiness level to test their solutions and services in a live environment where regulations are relaxed – a critical step towards commercialization.

The sandbox also provides innovators with access to a network of funding partners, as well as 50 industry experts and ecosystem players.

“With strategic interventions to accelerate commercialization, we have assisted more than 191 companies work through regulatory, technical and funding challenges, through 11 Sandbox programs since 2020,

“These efforts increase our security of innovation supply and raises our stature as a high-income, high-technology economy,” said Rais Hussin Mohamed Ariff, Chief Executive Officer of MRANTI.

On improving regulatory support for innovators, MRANTI said the agency is working closely with the Medical Devices Association (MDA) and the Ministry of Health to shorten the
process for products to safely and effectively go-to-market.

It said that through the NTIS, several regulatory improvements have been made for the deployment of drones in the agriculture sector.

It is noted that companies in the sandbox stress-test many technologies, across various sectors.

Over the past three years, drone and robotics as well as fourth industrial revolution (4IR) technologies, with 129 solutions designed to improve the agriculture, medical and healthcare and logistics sectors.

“One of the key learnings in the past three years in running the NTIS, is that there is a need to provide more avenues, scenarios and locations for experimentation, validation and testing for innovators who are at an earlier stage of their solution development,

“As such, MRANTI recently launched its Food Security Sandbox with the Northern Corridor Implementation Agency (NCIA) to allow technology providers to test their inventions in a live setting specifically to improve crop yield for paddy and fruits,” Mohamed Ariff said.

According to the statement, an additional two Sandboxes are expected to be rolled out in 2024, with aims to attract more companies and partners with solutions in more technology and sectoral areas.

“We hope to nurture more local innovators and close more gaps in the innovation lifecycle,

“As such, we will be expanding the existing 50 developmental programs next year, to ensure the effective transition of more prototypes to proof-of-concepts,” said Mohamed Ariff, adding that the agency had a target of 100 commercialized products by 2025 under the 12th Malaysia Plan.

It is learnt that products and solutions which have attained commercial status are further supported by MRANTI through market-expansion programs.

For example, the MRANTI Global-Market-Fit Program (GMP) provides assistance for high-growth innovative companies to strengthen their product position in a new market, gain insights and new opportunities in international markets.

The GMP offers eligible companies mentorship, specialized workshops, and government funding.

Since it was incepted in 2020, 81 companies have been supported to 11 international destinations including Japan, Indonesia, the European Union, China, Thailand, Germany and more.

Nomatech is an agritech company that has benefited from both program.

The firm recently commercialized new breeds of rice – including a low glycemic-index red rice and high-yield, high-resistance white rice.

The company is now offering its rice grain, flakes and flour products at major supermarket chains in Malaysia, and has received strong interest from Japan, Ireland and other international locations.

Meanwhile, GPS Fleet is another Malaysian company that has since opened up a company in Indonesia, having commercialized their fleet management and logistics

It is serving a growing logistics industry in one of the world’s largest archipelagos.

MRANTI’s GMP program is expected to reach two more destinations in 2024.

MRANTI, a convergence of Technology Park Malaysia (TPM Corp) and the Malaysian Global Innovation and Creativity Center (MaGIC), is Malaysia’s central research commercialization agency that fast-tracks the development of technology innovations from ideas to impact.

MRANTI serves as a connector, incubator and catalyst to enable early-stage ideation to mature entities to commercialize and scale.

The agency offers innovators and industry access to world-class integrated infrastructure, programs, services, facilities and a suite of resources.

In doing so, MRANTI aims to expand Malaysia’s funnel of innovation supply, and unlock new R&D value by ensuring effective transitions in the commercialization lifecycle.

It will also link academia with industry and the public sector to streamline market-driven R&D efforts for mission-based outcomes.

MRANTI is headquartered at MRANTI Park, an extensive 686 acre 4IR innovation hub in Kuala Lumpur, supporting the growth of smart manufacturing, biotech, agritech, smart city, green tech and enabling technology clusters.

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