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Startup Weekend


Through the Startup Weekend Fellowship, members of the Startup Weekend Community who want to start a technology company can apply to the Silicon Valley Founder Institute chapter for free, and the best overall applicant will be invited to participate in the Founder Institute's step-by-step startup launch program for free as well.

Eligibility: In order to be eligible for the Startup Weekend Fellowship for the upcoming semester, you must complete your application and admissions test by Sunday, December 11th, 2016, using this link.

Grant: The recipient of the Startup Weekend Fellowship will be awarded within 5 days after the deadline.

Click here to apply for the Startup Weekend Fellowship.

Penang Startup Poladrone Wins Big at Echelon Malaysia Top 100 Competition

Posted by Joe Garza on 2017-04-18

Many Asian countries have become strong leaders in the business startup world, and Malaysia is an epicenter of amazing ideas. While some startups are perhaps a little under the radar due to competition, many are starting to rise to the top in bringing practical solutions to complex problems.

One such company is Poladrone, a Graduate of the Penang Founder Institute. With the environment being a strong focus in Malaysia, Poladrone provides a far-reaching solution to protecting the region's agricultural industry.

The company focuses on drone technology that flies over farmland and gathers pertinent data for farmers to make smarter decisions. However, it goes beyond helping farmers and into overall land management. The drones provide insight into protecting the environment in a time when it's most vulnerable.

Here's a look at Poladrone's founder, features, and its promising future.

Poladrone's Win at the Echelon Malaysia Top 100 Fight Club

As you saw in the title, this drone company won a major award at one of Malaysia's top startup competitions. They beat out numerous other promising startups in a typically crowded Malaysian startup field.

Poladrone's founder, Jin Xi Cheong, now has better chances to take his company to the top after being in operation for only a year. Using autonomous drones and customized algorithms in their program, they've proven themselves to offer more accurate results in growing plants.

Despite focusing on Malaysia's oil palm industry at the moment, Jin Xi Cheong wants to make Poladrone a global operation eventually. His background gives him further clout.

Background on Jin Xi Cheong

When you take a look at Cheong's LinkedIn page, you'll find an impressive list of companies he's worked for in developing technology. He's gone from management consulting at Accenture to working as a senior finance analyst at Intel.

At the helm of starting Poladrone last year was his interest in drone technology and machine learning for data-driven decisions. Both of these tech worlds have huge futures. Cheong realized merging the two could lead to something greater.

It's worth taking some time to look at how his integrated technologies work in analyzing agriculture, especially through image recognition software.

The Technological Processes Behind Poladrone

Cheong's focus on image recognition technology allows the drones they use to accurately study the physical health of plants.

As he notes in a recent Mashable interview:

What we're focused on is something that's very simple and easy for plantation owners to deploy. Something that anyone can use, without much training."

It's clear this approach caught major attention from top corporations. In addition to our support, they've attracted partnerships from big names like Google and Microsoft.

The central focus on their tech is the autonomous drones produced by another partner: DJI. Using their Phantom drones, Poladrone's staff preset a particular flight mission based on business need. Once the drone captures data, it goes to the company's secure servers for instant computation.

You'll be able to see process maps in hours providing thorough data, with online accessibility at any time.

Funding for the Company

The partnerships with Google, Microsoft, and DJI have already given considerable building blocks for Poladrone. In the way of funding, they're still in seed mode, yet received an undisclosed amount of funding this last February from two investors.

Thanks to Cheong's strong work ethic and drive toward bringing new technologies forward, his company's growth is going to become substantial.

Nevertheless, Cheong notes in the above Mashable interview how Malaysia farmers still use traditional methods. He says it's going to become a gradual process to transition them to his technology, perhaps another five to ten years. However, at the rate Poladrone is moving, the future looks bright for this auspicious company.

Click here for more information on Poladrone.

Penang Startup Poladrone Wins Big at Echelon Malaysia Top 100 Competition

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