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Singapore emerging as tech hub with new financial grants

Singapore’s Economic Development Board (EDB) has awarded a grant to US customer service software firm Zendesk to nurture and grow technology talents in the region.

The expected outcome is for Zendesk to increase its product development and engineering team over the next three years.

As a customer service solutions provider, Zendesk provides businesses with the tools for managing their customer support conservations. This in return gives the necessary information for ensuring that customer’s needs are met.

It aims to hire more software engineers, product managers, DevOps engineers, security engineers, user experience researchers and program managers.

Kiren Kumar, Digital Industry Singapore’s chief digital industry officer, said that this new partnership is a testament to Zendesk’s long-standing support for Singapore.

It is contributing by shaping the workforce in Singapore into one which has a “strong pool of digital and tech talent”. It will also provide more job opportunities within Singapore.

Digital Industry Singapore is made up of EDB, Enterprise Singapore and the Info-communications Media Development Authority of Singapore.

Zendesk is also expected to introduce new initiatives of its own such as the customer relationship platform Zendesk Sunshine, like messaging service Smooch, and WhatsApp for Zendesk.

Zendesk APAC vice-president Sandie Overtveld said, “A growth in digitally-savvy customers has changed APAC’s consumer landscape, and companies in Singapore have recognised the need to better meet customer expectations with more seamless and personalised experiences.”

Singapore is gradually establishing itself as a hub for research centres and tech firms bases from all over the world.

Senior Minister and Coordinating Minister for National Security Mr Teo Chee Hean said on Monday that Cyber Security firms from across the world are welcome to set up base in Singapore.

He announced this at the opening ceremony of cybersecurity firm Ensign InfoSecurity, which has set up its Singapore-focused Security Operations Centre (SOC) in Singapore. This firm was jointly set up by local telecommunication provider StarHub and Temasek Holdings.

Mr Teo said that he believes that plenty of benefits can be reaped and a lot can be achieved by these international enterprises using “Singapore’s human capital, technical expertise, networks and understanding of the region.”

“People, innovation and collaboration are crucial to building world-class cybersecurity capabilities that we need here in Singapore and can become new business here. I am glad that Ensign has made efforts on these three fronts,” he said.

Ensign’s new SOC will be focused on training its employees to “detect and neutralise” cyber threats found in Singapore more efficiently.

It will employ big data analytics and artificial intelligence (AI) to predict and understand the potential and new cyber threats which are developing here.

Other firms such as Group-IB a cybersecurity company specialising in investigating and deter cybercrime had shifted its headquarters from Moscow to Singapore.

Switzerland-based Acronis has also set up its international headquarters in Singapore.

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