Makanpreneur Accelerator Program, 2017

Encouraging Sustainable Food Alternatives


We invite aspiring food entrepreneurs to apply for Makanpreneur (“Foodpreneur”), the first accelerator program to develop sustainable food alternatives, with total in-cash and in-kind support value of up to SGD60,000.

How can the existing food system be improved for healthier, more affordable and sustainable food, whether it is home-grown algae, insect farms, food waste hawker stalls, urban food gardens, or some other innovative concepts?


Food security and production worldwide is one of the major challenges of the 21st century and paramount for our survival as a species. The Makanpreneur program is part of Croeni Charity’s dedication to providing accessible, nutritious diet to all human beings, in order to achieve ‘Zero Hunger’ (UN’s ‘Sustainable Development Goal #2‘).

A joined initiative by our Charity and UNFRAMED, Makanpreneur is the first accelerator program in the region specifically focusing on food sustainability.

Run by entrepreneurs for entrepreneurs, it offers up to five selected early-stage startups comprehensive support to get to the next level.

Startup Support Includes

  • 2 x SGD5,000 in funding for the startups demonstrating the most progress within the Makanpreneur program.
  • In-kind support valued at SGD10,000 per startup with:
    • Access to regular training courses and workshops.
    • Bi-weekly 1-1 coaching by seasoned entrepreneurs and industry experts.
    • Privileged access to Singapore’s largest social impact network of cross-sector organisations and experts, comprising for-impact startups and entrepreneurs, corporates, nonprofits, government, funders, etc.
    • Invitations to exclusive and relevant community events.
    • Pitching opportunities and direct access to follow-on funding partners.
    • Media coverage and other PR opportunities.
    • A chance to become an Impact Fellow of Croeni Charity.
    • And much more.


  • September 17, 2017

How to Participate

  1. By September 17, 2017:
  2. By September 30, 2017:
    • Raise as much awareness and funding for your initiative as you can.
    • Shortlisted applicants will be invited to pitch to an independent panel of industry experts, based on the success of their crowdfunding campaign (both the amount raised and the number of supporters will be taken into account) and feasibility of their business proposal.
  3. World Food Day, October 16, 2017:
    • Up to 5 successful applicants joining the Makanpreneur program will be announced.
  4. From November 2017 to March 2018:
    • As the crowdfunding element is optional, the funding pool of SGD10,000 will be disbursed in 2 tranches, based on key metrics, such as growth in financials and impact:
      • At mid-accelerator programme, by 18 January, 2018, it will be assessed which Makanpreneur has demonstrated the most progress from November 2017 to January 2018. The startup will be awarded SGD2,000 funding grant.
      • At the end of the accelerator programme, by 17 March, 2018, it will assessed which Makanpreneur has demonstrated the most progress from January to March 2018. The startup will be awarded SGD8,000 funding grant.

Our Experts & Judges

Our Partners

  • UNFRAMED, incubating and training tomorrow’s social entrepreneurs
  • Give.Asia, fundraising goodness


Makanpreneur is a holistic training program that offers food sustainability related startups with comprehensive support from seasoned entrepreneurs and industry  experts.

The first run was organised by UNFRAMED with Croeni CharityFoodXervices and the National Youth Council (NYC) as program partners and Citizen FarmThe Food Bank Singapore and the Tolaram Group as supporting partners. It equipped the next “Makanpreneurs” with critical skills and knowledge, an extensive network of contacts, and strategic partnerships to develop sustainable food alternatives businesses.

Key data points:

  • A 7-month program, running from September 2017 – April 2018
  • Over its course, it offered the participants 9 coaching sessions, 5 community events, 13 workshops, 2 masterclasses and 2 informal get-togethers
  • 16 applications to the program were received, with 4 startups selected to participate. These included Ecolution (next-generation polyculture farms) – the final winner of $8,000 funding grant; FarmX (simple and cost-efficient urban farming solutions) – mid-point winner of $2,000 funding grant; E-farmer Market (online platform connecting hobby farmers with their local community); and Lasmin (online marketplace reducing waste and perishable materials by bringing sellers and buyers onto a common platform).
  • 4 mentors (Jan Croeni / Croeni Charity, Nichol Ng / FoodXervices, Jeff Kwan / MINDS, Rohit Nanwani / Tolaram Group), 4 trainers and coaches (Alvin Ng / AfterYou, Chua Ruo Mei / SUTW, Patsian Low / Independent consultant, Tomithy Too / ST Telemedia), and 6 speakers at community events (Emilyn Ng / Ying Communications, Jerry Lim / JP Pepperdine Group, Darren Ho / Citizen Farm, Nicholas Ng / FoodXervices, Koh Seng Choon / Dignity Kitchen, Walter Oh / Boxgreen)
  • Overwhelmingly positive feedback from the participants. All participants were satisfied with the program and saw it as helpful in scaling their startups. All would recommend it to other people interested in growing their for-impact initiatives.

Since completing the program, the participants continued to develop their startups, with the following notable achievements:

  • Ecolution – secured additional $50,000 seed funding from a private investor, secured outdoor location for model execution at no rental cost, hired new sales distributor
  • FarmX – expanded into new markets of smart home garden watering systems, started working with new farms in Indonesia, including a green house project for the Indonesian army, entered into discussions with farms in Sarawak, Malaysia to adopt their precision farming technology
  • E-farmer Market – invited by NYC to be a delegate at the annual ASEAN Youth Expo 2018, one co-founder left her job to develop the business full-time, one of the 30 social enterprises showcased at Wake Up Your Idea 2018 Festival, currently pursues National Youth Fund for further scaling and to expand their services to gardening workshops

Makanpreneur started with the intention to achieve greater public awareness on food-related challenges, foster more innovation in the food industry and build a comprehensive cross-sector ecosystem​ in support of food entrepreneurs. Through the intensive months of continuous engagement with the Makanpreneur startups, the involvement of partners from various sectors and the invitation of the public to community events, this first-ever accelerator programme focused on food sustainability was a success.

It created an accessible platform to foster exchange of knowledge and experience of experts in the industry and an authentic space for individuals and agencies from various sectors to cross paths to initiate partnerships and nurture innovation.

Moving forward, UNFRAMED will continue to actively engage the Makanpreneur startups and support the next stages of their entrepreneurship journey.

Building on the first run of the program, conversations with the Makanpreneur partners and other food-related organisations are ongoing to explore how we can foster greater collective impact by playing a leading role in the emerging local and regional food innovation and sustainability ecosystem.

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