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MISA 2018

MISA ’18 focused on organizations who are working on innovaitons that make the world a better place.  Innovations that tackle social and environmental challenges.  It is often predicted that in order to keep up with the accelerating rate of innovation, collaboration with start – ups and other stakeholders is a necessity.  We therefore, focused on connecting and engaging start – ups / scale – ups, investors, corporates, and other innovators.

The award categories this year (Best Start – Up / Scale – Up in Sustainable Innovation, Best Environmental Innovation, and Best Social Innovation), gave a wide range of companies the opportunity to participate.

Part of this year’s program was comparable with the famous “Shark Tank” concept.  We invited shortlisted contestants in the category Best Start – Up / Scale – Up in Sustainable Innovation to pitch their solution to some of the leading organizations in the field of innovation, venture capital management, government, and corporate, who considered the long term growth potential of the presented business concepts.  

Our event partners made award prizes and rewards available.  These ranged from mentoring and fund raising advice sessions with experts, to patenting assistance, or providing office space and facilities.  With this part of the program, we created a low barrier platform for different stakeholders to connect an engage.  The goal was to help these start – ups, or scale – ups, fill any gaps in taking their concept and business model to the next (realization) stage.

Thanks to this program extension, MISA ’18 has certainly reached out to a larger segment of our community and far beyond.  All award categories were open to both MDBC members and non – members who had an innovative project or business concept to participate with.  MDBC stimulated a healthy competition, created exposure opportunities for participating companies, and provided a platform for companies to expand their network, both within and outside of the MDBC community.

MISA ’18 took place on Friday, 12 October 2018 at the DoubleTree by Hilton Kuala Lumpur.

The following competitors emerged victorious in a closely contested battle during the final round of competition that took place during the MISA Day Program.  Congratulations to the Innovation & Sustainability Champions for 2018!
Winners of MISA 2018:
* Best Social Innovation: Digi Telecommunications Sdn Bhd
* Best Environmental Innovation: Paques Asia Pacific Sdn Bhd
* Best Start – Up / Scale – Up in Sustainable Innovation: MN Empire
* Audience Award: HEINEKEN Malaysia

Congratulations to the Winners of MISA 2018 l to r: Prithi Sharma (HEINEKEN Malaysia), Rob van As (Paques Asia Pacific), H.E. Karin Mössenlechner (Chief Judge MISA ’18 and Ambassador, Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands), Y.B. Dato’ Sri Mustapa Mohamad, Y. Bhg. Datuk Isham Ishak (Secretary General, Ministry of International Trade and Industry), Zainul Rahim (MDBC Chairman), Philip Leong (Digi Telecommunications), and Dato’ Marcus Lee Andrew (MN Empire).

MISA 2018 Categories

2018 Categories

Please note that as always, the expert panel of MISA judges have the right to move a participant from one category to another if the judges believe that a different category is more appropriate / applicable.  For more information on the Judges of MISA 2018, please see the Judges panel.

The Award Categories for MISA 2018 were:

  1. Best Start – Up / Scale – Up in Sustainable Innovation

    The contestant is a start – up or scale – up that has an innovative and sustainable business concept or project.  The start – up / scale – up focuses on creating new market space, products, services, or processes driven by social, environmental, or sustainability issues.

    We define a start – up as a young company that has thoroughly canvassed and tested the business idea and is ready to launch or is launched.  It has the ambition of growing fast with a scalable business model.

    We define a scale – up as a development stage business that is looking to grow in terms of market access, revenues, and number of employees, adding value by identifying and realizing win – win opportunities for collaboration with established organizations. The business is considered a scale – up if it shows an average annualized growth greater than 20% per annum (measured by number of employees or by turnover), over a three year period.

    This category’s format differs slightly from the other two categories. Shortlisted contestants pitch their solution to some of the largest organizations in the field of innovation, venture capital management, government and corporate, who considered the long – term growth potential of the presented business concepts. Our event partners made award prizes available to help these start – ups or scale – ups fill any gaps in taking their concept and business model to the next stage. You were allowed to enter the competition if your business is an officially registered entity, and is defined as a start – up or scale up according to our definitions.

  2. Best Environmental Innovation 

    The winner has an innovation that is new or has significantly improved characteristics, which benefits the environment and contributes to environmental stability.

    This clothing brand uses old plastic materials in their new clothing, making their jeans more sustainable.

    Our solar roof compliments your homes architecture while turning sunlight into electricity.” – Tesla

  3. Best Social Innovation

    The winner has an innovation that is new or has significantly improved characteristics, and meets social needs or creates new social relationships or collaborations.

    This company was founded with the intention of donating a pair of shoes to a child in need for every pair that was purchased from the company.” – Blake Mycoskie

    The time is always right to do what’s right.” – Martin Luther King Jr.

All shortlisted nominees also competed for the ‘Audience Award’.  After the presentations at the day – program, each shortlisted nominee were invited to deliver a one minute elevator pitch in order to promote their project or start – up during the MISA Awards Ceremony & Dinner.  The audience was then invited to cast their vote for which nominee they thought deserved to win the ‘Audience Award’.  

MISA 2018 Shortlisted

The quality and quantity of submissions for MISA 2018 guaranteed that the finalists were in for a battle to be crowned Innovation & Sustainability Champions of 2018.  An independent, expert panel of judges led by the Chief Judge – H.E. Karin Mössenlechner, announced the following as shortlisted entries for MISA 2018.  These companies were then invited to present their projects during the MISA 2018 Day Program (which was open to the general public) for a Q&A session and final judging.

Please note: Shortlisted nominees are listed in alphabetical order; the order is NOT indicative of any ranking.

The shortlisted nominees and projects in the ‘Best Start – Up / Scale – Up in Sustainable Innovation‘ category were:

* Abmanan Biomedical Sdn Bhd – Specializing in the production and development of Haruan’s extract.

* Bayz Parking – Allowing residents and mall operators to rent out idle parking spaces.

* MikeBikes – Offering guided bicycle tours through Kuala Lumpur, focusing on heritage sites in partnership with local companies.

* Malaysia Institute for Supply Chain Innovation – Leading a project aiming to increase independent small holder farmer’s livelyhood through logistics optimization.

* MN Empire Sdn Bhd – Creator of a solar powered mosquito eliminator.

* Serv Technology Sdn Bhd – Online car service platform.

The shortlisted nominees and projects in the ‘Best Environmental Innovation‘ category were:

* Expleco Ltd – Developer of compact glass bottle crushers converting glass to sand.

* HEINEKEN Malaysia – The CRM arm of HEINEKEN Malaysia Global Environment Centre collaborates with the SPARK Foundation, government agencies, and communities to bring about the W.A.T.E.R. Project for River and Water Conservation.

* Paques Asia Pacific Sdn Bhd – Offering circular sustainable solutions for toxic biogas.

* Sime Darby Research Sdn Bhd – Creating Zero Discharge Technology featuring advanced membrance filtration and oxidation technology for palm oil wastewater treatment to enable the production of recyclable water.

The shortlisted nominees and projects in the ‘Best Social Innovation‘ category were:

* Arcadis Malaysia – Deep Orange is a global co – creation and innovation program to address key issues around affordable housing, mobility, and construction safety to improve liveability in KL.

* Digi Telecommunications – Yellow Heart for Safer Internet provides engaging and interactive education programs to teach children to recognize cyber risks and how to act accordingly.

* Make It Right Movement (MIRM) – MIRM supports over 200 charity and CSR related projects, supporting and empowering internal stakeholders and the community by fund raising management, capacity building, strategic planning, project management, and social media management.

* Shell Malaysia Limited – #MyGeekMovement helps embed interest in sciences among lower secondary school students nationwide, immersing them into a world of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) through STEM education tools.

MISA 2018 Judges

All MISA entries were judged by highly regarded, independent, expert individuals led by the Chief Judge – H.E. Karin Mössenlechner (Ambassador, Embassy of the Kingdom of The Netherlands).  

After shortlisting entries to the top 3 in each category, judges do one final round of assessment during the MISA Day Program where each shortlisted nominee gives a presentation on their submission.  Judges and audience members alike are allowed to ask questions of each nominee before category judges meet privately to confer and tally up the points.  

Winners in each category are announced immediately after the Day Program at the MISA Awards Ceremony and Dinner.  This announcement is inclusive of a Judges Report on the winner’s submission highlighting the underlying core concept of MISA – the sharing of best practices which leads to an elevation in the understanding of Innovation & Sustainability.

CHIEF JUDGE – H.E. Karin Mössenlechner
Ambassador, Embassy of the Kingdom of The Netherlands

The Ambassador started her diplomatic career in 1997.  She was first posted in The Hague, followed by a posting as Head of Political Section in New Delhi, India.  From 2006 – 2010, she was the Deputy Ambassador and Head of Economic Affairs in Berne, Switzerland.  From 2010 – 2011, she was Assistant Director for European Integration at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in The Hague.  She then went on a transfer to the Royal Netherlands Football Association (KNVB), where she worked as the Coordinator for Security Policy and Public Affairs, as well as Deputy Competition Leader for the Dutch Premier League (Eredivisie). From 2013 – 2016 she was back at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in The Hague as Deputy Director Security Policy and in the latter part of that period also as coordinator for MH17.  On 1 August 2016 the Ambassador took up her post here in Malaysia.


JUDGE A – Matt van Leeuwen
Director – Innovation & Commercialisation, Sunway University

Matt has significant entrepreneurial experience with start – ups in the UK, Singapore, and Malaysia.  Most notably, he was co – founder of SimuGen (an international genomics company), Camtech (Singaporean incubator), and Science Bridge Academy (leading provider of STEM educational programs and teaching kits in the ASEAN region.  Previously, he was a Commercialisation Specialist in PlaTCOM Ventures.  Matt trained at the University of Cambridge (UK) and the University of Utrecht (The Netherlands), where he gained a BSc in Biomedical Sciences and MSc in Science & Business.  


JUDGE B – Azman Hassan
Vice President – PEMANDU Associates

Azman’s work utilises the Big Fast Results (BFR) Methodology and he was involved in cabinet level prioritisation workshops, problem solving laboratories, enabling implementation through capacitating and coaching of local staff, and transforming national and sub – national delivery offices.  Prior to PEMANDU, he worked at a Fortune 500 MNC in various capacities from head of country office, to global logistics network strategy, supply chain re – engineering, and business unit functions at the corporate HQ.


JUDGE A – Timothy Ong
Senior Vice President – Strategic Impact Projects & Head of National Biomass Strategy Delivery Unit (1MBAS), Agensi Inovasi Malaysia (AIM)

Timothy has led the development of State level biomass development action plans for Sabah and Sarawak with the local State government to help accelerate commercial progress of biomass related projects through full implementation support.  He is currently a leading member in state level biomass working committees for both Sabah and Sarawak to execute the respective plans.  He works actively with foreign governments to advance their interest in Malaysia for biobased projects and is an active member in United Nations – FAO Working Group on Sustainable Bioeconomy Policies and Strategies.   


JUDGE B – Melissa Sandhu
Marketing & Communications Director, Basis Bay

Melissa leverages the dynamics of driving sustainability through corporate responsibility efforts, including strategic evaluations and their contributions towards business outcomes.  An early adopter of practical change and purposeful collaboration, her 17 years of marketing and communications experience sees her spearheading Green initiatives from across a diverse range of industries internationally.


JUDGE A – Freda Liu
Producer / Presenter – Enterprise, BFM

Freda has conducted over 5,000 interviews with some prominent names including author Stephen Covey, motivational speaker Nick Vijucic, former GE CEO Jack Welch, the Duke of York HRH Prince Andrew, and Wikileaks founder Julian Assange.  She has been with BFM since its inception in 2009 and previously worked at Edelman PR, and IBM in the Communications Department for Asia Pacific.    Freda was awarded the ASEAN Rice Bowl Award for Malaysia Startup Journalist of The Year and was a nominee for MAGIC’s Social Enterprise Journalist.  She is a member of the National Association of Women Entrepreneurs Malaysia (NAWEM) and the Malaysian Association of Professional Speakers (MAS).  She is an alumni of the Cherie Blair Foundation For Women (Mentor for Women in Business).


JUDGE B – Michael Warren
Director – Strategy, Advisory & Services, InvestKL

Michael brings with him over 30 years of corporate leadership and management experience mainly in Asia Pacific countries.  He has been instrumental in pioneering the start – up, operations, and restructuring of entrepreneurial, regional, and multinational organisations across a variety of industries including telcos, financial services, energy & utilities, manufacturing, and the public sector.  His career path also includes experience with MDEC, the NTT Group, Fujitsu, LogicaCMG, the Sampoerna Group, the Keppel T&T Group, Wang, 3Com, and Digital Equipment Corporation (DEC).  Currently, he is also an adjunct professor at the national university of Malaysia, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, promoting industry – academia collaboration.  

MISA 2018 Supplement

MISA 2018 Day Program Photos

MISA 2018 Photo Album
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MISA 2018 Awards Ceremony & Dinner Photos

MISA 2018 Awards Ceremony & Dinner
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