Golam Murshed, Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Walton Hi-Tech Industries Limited, opined that the country will move ahead with Bangabandhu's dream of building an industrially and economically rich Bangladesh only when the innovative power will boost up the domestic industry.
"Walton is advancing the domestic hi-tech industry. The development of Bangladesh and the present government as well as Walton's 12-year journey Walton is moving forward in the same way. We are working with the expectation that Walton will represent Bangladesh in the world by 2030," he noted.
Walton's managing director and CEO made these remarks while addressing the Grand Final of the 'Bangabandhu Innovation Grant (Big) -2021' competition held at the auditorium of the Bangladesh Film Archive in Agargaon on Saturday, 30 October.
On the occasion of the birth centenary of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, the Idea Project of the ICT division arranged the competition on a virtual platform for startups and innovators.
Walton was the title sponsor of the grand finale of this competition. The best startup of the competition was awarded US$1 lakh.
Finance Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal virtually attended the event as the chief guest. State Minister for ICT Division Zunaid Ahmed Palak presided over the 'Big-2021' grand finale.
Among others, ICT Division's Senior Secretary NM Ziaul Alam, Bangladesh Computer Council's Executive Director Md Abdul Mannan and Idea Project's director Abdur Rakib and Walton Digi-Tech Industries Limited's Deputy Managing Director Liakat Ali also attended the function as special guests.
State Minister for ICT Division Junaid Ahmed Palak said, the architect of modern Bangladesh as well as Digital Bangladesh, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has chosen technology as a tool to build Bangabandhu's industrially and economically rich Bangladesh.
Highlighting the incumbent government's various activities and achievements in the field of technology, the ICT state minister said that the Bangabandhu Innovation Grant (Big)' competition will be organised every year.
Speaking on the occasion, Golam Murshed said, "Creation, happiness, joy - the combination of these three is an innovative force. If such an arrangement with startups and innovators had taken place fifteen or twenty years ago, at least 26 more companies like Walton would now be in Bangladesh. Today's 28 startups will be able to sponsor 26 more such events in an era, then this event will be successful."
He also assured them of providing any kind of possible cooperation if they needed it. Walton MD and CEO also noted, "Startups are like unicorns, which symbols are purity, freedom, independence and magic. The 26 startups will show that magic. They will take Bangladesh forward and also lead the world. Congratulations and best wishes from the Walton family.
At the event, it was informed that more than 7,000 startups from all over the country and 255 startups from abroad submitted their participation in the 'Big-2021' competition held on the online platform. Of these, 65 local start-ups were selected in two rounds. A special reality show of 13 episodes 'Big-2021' was held to select the best 26 startups from among them.
A total of 48 initiatives were then shortlisted for the grand finale, including 26 selected start-ups, 10 from the international stage and 10 more startups from the Idea project portfolio.
In the grand finale, a total of 36 startups were selected as the final winners. Each winning startup was given a grant of Tk10 lakh. Out of them, 'Open Re Factory' was chosen as the best startup, who were awarded 'Bangabandhu Innovation Grant 2021 (Big)' crest and US$1 lakh as the prize money.