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THE Department of Science and Technology-Philippine Council for Industry, Energy, and Emerging Technology Research and Development (DOST-PCIEERD) has ranked the De La Salle-College of Saint Benilde Hub of Innovation for Inclusion (HiFi) first among 27 universities which will receive a Technology Business Incubator (TBI) grant.

Through the recognition, Benilde’s HiFi is now classified as an accredited TBI, with the shared goal of promoting “technopreneurship” by nurturing financially viable business start-ups into sustainable operations. The initiative will be able to develop entrepreneurs, create jobs, and promote public-private partnerships in regional economic development.

Founded in 2016 and housed at the Peter D. Garrucho Innovations Institute, Benilde HiFi opens its doors to provide office spaces, facilities and analytical laboratories. It will offer technical, administrative, business development, marketing assistance, intellectual-property management and legal-counseling services, all needed during the developmental stage of technology entrepreneurs.

The team is composed of Benilde Partnership Advancement Director Robin Serrano, together with Benilde Center for Intellectual Property Management Director Atty. Janice Tejano, Benilde Partnership Advancement Officer Patricia Go-Manere, HiFi Incubation Coordinator Alex Abear, HiFi Entrepreneur in Residence Camille Albarracin, as well as HiFi Incubation Manager and Officer in Charge-Director Paul Pajo.

“With the DOST team working with us, we foresee more active participation by our students and faculty with HiFi,” Serrano noted. “It would rev up the interest of…industries and communities we work with and serve.”

“We will be able to directly support our incubation initiatives with funds from the grant,” he added. “The recognition will enable us to bring in more supporters and believers in HiFi, as well as our schools and programs involved in its initiatives.”

To be admitted to the TBI program, learning institutions should have active research-and-development and existing facilities that may be tapped by future start-ups. They likewise should have an existing partnership with business schools, industry associations or private organizations. The institutions must also offer entrepreneurship or technopreneurship programs.

DOST-PCIEERD previously received a total of 89 applications from diverse higher education institutions nationwide, as they underwent meticulous screening by a panel of industry experts.

Ateneo de Manila University and Philippine Women’s College of Davao placed second and third places, respectively. The Central Philippine University in Iloilo landed fourth, while the University of the Philippines-Baguio clinched fifth.

Image credits: DLS-CSB