Bangkok Hackathon to save Southeast Asia’s energy system

An International Alliance with the Power to Accelerate the Smart Energy Economy in Southeast Asia
An international alliance of partners have launched the Smart Energy Hackathon in Bangkok, Thailand from Sept. 8-10 to accelerate the development of innovative software solutions to tackle energy challenges in Southeast Asia. Developers, data scientists, energy industry executives from all around Southeast Asia compete in a two-day coding campaign with $10,000 in prize offerings. Hackathons are creative sprint-like events allowing to identify new solutions to problems while providing a platform for teams to form - and potentially take ideas further into new ventures afterwards. The Smart Energy Hackathon is enabled by strategic sponsors including currently PTT Public Company Limited, Engie, Provincial Electricity Authority, Whapow and Blue Solar, and co-organized by GIZ, TechGrind, CalCEF/New Energy Nexus, Chulalongkorn University Innovation Hub (CU) and Knowledge Xchange For Innovation (KX).
Digitization is Key
Many Southeast Asian regions are struggling to manage the impacts of climate change which in turn generates strong demand for renewable energy sources and smart energy technologies. The Smart Energy Hackathon provides startups a path to develop localized software solutions that span the entire energy value chain including Internet of Things (IoT), electric vehicle (EV) charging management, smart grid, energy management, on-demand customer services and more. The digitization of the energy industry in Southeast Asia will allow greater flexibility for utilities to manage the integration of renewable energy sources, grid protection, smart asset management and provide better customer service.
Build the Ecosystem 
The shared vision of the sponsors and organizers of the Smart Energy Hackathon is to develop a sustainable energy ecosystem throughout Southeast Asia that supports energy entrepreneurship, corporate innovation and smart energy investment through a bottom-up approach. Building a fertile foundation for energy startups is the first step to gaining mass adoption and support from government and corporations. The Smart Energy Hackathon will catalyze momentum and increase awareness around the importance of energy innovation. The call for applicants is now open and application deadline is August 13, 2017. Selected applicants will be announced on August 17, 2017. Find more information at as well as on Facebook and Twitter.
“Bringing smart energy solutions into the markets at scale is no longer a hardware challenge, it is innovative business models and software solutions that are key to success. GIZ is excited to contribute to creating an ecosystem for smart energy entrepreneurship that will produce innovative solutions for the energy transition in Southeast Asia.”
Thomas Chrometzka, Director Renewable Energy, GIZ Thailand
“TechGrind is looking forward to discovering and supporting solar software startups that will tackle massive energy problems and aim to grow into $1Billion+ companies!”
Pavel Laletin, General Partner, Co-Founder & COO, TechGrind Incubator & Venture Capital
“For KX, the creation of a clean-tech ecosystem in Thailand is a huge opportunity that fosters innovations in clean technology and green development. We need technology and innovations in this sector to realize sustainability development goals and to optimize Thailand’s energy mix. Innovations in the areas - recycling, renewable energy, green transportation, electric motors, green chemistry, lighting & greywater - not only help to safeguard Thailand’s environment but are a valuable opportunity in venture building & investing.” Kris Chinosorn, Director, Knowledge Xchange for Innovation
“We are thrilled to join an alliance of leading incubators and organizations to co-develop an energy economy in Southeast Asia. The Smart Energy Hackathon is a game-changer and will undoubtedly bring new ideas and the spotlight on energy innovation and entrepreneurship. We want to support the next generation of energy entrepreneurs in Southeast Asia and this hackathon is our first step in an exciting series of activities we are planning in the region.” Hendrik Tiesinga, Co-Founder and Program Manager, New Energy Nexus
“One of our strategic clusters in CU Innovation Hub is Sustainable development which includes energy sector. We aim to develop and orchestrate a sustainable energy ecosystem throughout Southeast Asia regions that supports energy entrepreneurship and startups, corporate innovation and smart energy investment through both top-down and both bottom-up approach. Within Southeast Asia regions, it is incontrovertible that we are struggling to manage energy challenges, especially strong demand for renewable energy sources and smart energy technologies. To provide better smart energy technologies and accelerate the development of software innovation solutions, the Smart Energy Hackathon becomes a one of the perfect answers to deliver or at least initiate new solutions.” Ronnakorn Vaiyavuth, PhD, Director, CU Innovation Hub
Organizer Descriptions
Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH
GIZ is an experienced service provider owned by German government with approximately 20.000 employees spread over more than 130 countries. GIZ offers demand-driven, tailor-made and effective services for sustainable development from balancing economic development with social inclusion to environmental protection. In Thailand, GIZ implements projects and programmes on behalf several German Federal Ministrie, the European Union and funding partners such as the Rockefeller Foundation or the Toyota Motor Corporation, as well as with the Government of Thailand.
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TechGrind is an ASEAN technology startup ecosystem, headquartered in Bangkok, formed by TechGrind Incubator & Venture Capital, TechGrind Ventures Syndicate, TechGrind Hub and TechGrind Spaces. TechGrind Incubator is the 1st private technology incubator in Southeast Asia, in partnership with Amazon, IBM, Digital Ocean, helloPay, Microsoft Bizspark and many others. TechGrind offers incubation to early-stage startups to help build a founding team, corporate structure, IP strategy, scalability and then connect the startups to the world's best tech investors.
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Chulalongkorn University Innovation Hub (CU)
Chulalongkorn University Innovation Hub (CU) is committed to nurturing talents and developing innovations that transform how Thais live, learn and play. Founded and supported by Chulalongkorn University, CU Innovation Hub aims at developing creative thinking and entrepreneur skills for students and employees through hackathons, forums and training programs.
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Knowledge Exchange for Innovation Center (KX)
Knowledge Exchange for Innovation Center (KX) acts as a portal, a contact point and a one-stop service provider with the mission “To Increase Thailand’s Competitiveness”. KX provides innovation capability building programs for productivities improvement as well as accelerator programs to support the startups. By cooperating with US and New Zealand education institutes, KX spares much effort to develop stronger SME for a stronger Thai economy.
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CalCEF/New Energy Nexus
New Energy Nexus supports clean, smart and distributed startups worldwide by facilitating collaboration and innovation between industry experts, accelerators and entrepreneurs that are transforming tomorrow’s energy systems. New Energy Nexus is powered by the California Clean Energy Fund (CalCEF). The California Clean Energy Fund (CalCEF) has been investing in, and accelerating clean energy innovation and and startup ecosystems for over a decade. CalCEF is tightly integrated in a web of clean energy research institutions, startup accelerators, and investors.
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