Bangladesh NutriStar: Nutrition Innovation Challenge launched its competition with the Dhaka roadshow
    event at the Daffodil University on January 13th, 2020.

    Mr. Syed Muntasir Ridwan, the national coordinator of SUN Business Network, gave the key-note
    speech to outline the areas of innovation across the food system and ways of investing in food safety and
    nutrition in Bangladesh. To attract more applications, more roadshow events will be conducted outside
    Dhaka in cities like Chattagram, Khulna, Rangpur, and Jessore.

    Mr. Syed Muntasir Ridwan, the national coordinator of SUN Business Network, giving the key-note speech

    He said, “Poor diet is a major killer when it comes to maintenance of the wellbeing of consumers, through
    commercially scalable solutions and innovations, this challenge can be easily solved with help created
    from more awareness and nutrition programs.”

    Bangladesh Nutristar is a competition to harness innovative solutions for improved nutrition by
    connecting startups and businesses in emerging markets with technical assistance and investment
    opportunities. The competition is organized as part of the global Scaling Up Nutrition (SUN) movement
    pitch competition taking part in 13 other countries across Asia and Africa, the SUN  Business Network
    Bangladesh co-convened by The Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN), World Food Programme
    (WFP) and hosted by the Ministry of Industries are the implementing partners. LightCastle Partners is the
    organizing partner of the competition while Daffodil International University is the academic partner of the
    Dhaka Roadshow event.

    The program also included a panel discussion on “Transforming Food Safety and Nutrition Security
    through business innovation” moderated by Mr. Bijon Islam, CEO of LightCastle Partners. The panel
    was comprised of Ms. Colleen Conner, Nutrition Officer of World Food Programme (WFP) – the world’s
    largest humanitarian organization addressing hunger and promoting food security and nutrition; Mr.
    Subrata Kumar Kundu, Co-founder & CEO of Bhalo Social Enterprise –  an initiative that create access
    to good products, services, and markets for people living in the hard-to-reach areas; Mr. Mustafizur
    Khan, Partner of IDLC Venture Capital Fund-1, a BDT 45 crore (US$ 5milion) VC fund in Bangladesh;
    and Mr. Zia Ashraf, Co-founder & COO of Chaldal.com – the largest e-commerce player in the country in
    the grocery and consumer food space.

    Participants eagerly listening to the panelists’ insights

    “There is a huge untapped market when it comes to nutritious food, which corporations and multinationals
    can work towards. By making more collaborations and maintaining cooperation, it can be easily
    captured.” said Ms. Colleen Conner.

    “Agricultural side is slowly growing in popularity; however, it needs to be made more scalable and more
    differentiated approaches need to be implemented. Differentiation, Value, and Consistency are factors
    that need to be maintained by the popular and up-and-coming brands, to capture and grow in a more
    sustainable way and build more trust with the consumers.” added Mr. Subrutu Kumar.

    20 teams from food systems and agro space will be shortlisted from all the applications for incubation
    boot camp in February. 10 finalist teams will receive tickets to investor night and final demo day in March
    to win BDT 250 thousand grant money and a chance to visit the international SUN pitch competition finals
    in Singapore in April.

    For more information,
    Visit: www.sunpitchcompetition.com/bangladesh
    Application: bit.ly/NutriStarApplyNow 

    The last date of application is January 31st, 2020.