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The Human Touch in Deep Tech: Soft Skills for Startup Success 9th November 2023


Nov 09 2023, Thursday04:00 PM - 06:30 PM (GMT +8:00) Kuala Lumpur, Singapore


32 Carpenter Street, 059911

, Singapore



Deep-tech startups are defined by their technological prowess and the solutions they bring to the market or society. Another important factor is savvy business acumen: how is the startup going to find customers and what business model will generate enough revenue for the next steps?

However, a factor often overlooked is the human element that goes beyond having a team with the right technical or business skills. Founders need to persuade, motivate, empathise with and thrive within a nexus of stakeholders, team members, customers, suppliers, supporters and competitors. This event aims to start a conversation about the soft skillsets required for a deep-tech startup to thrive. Trina Teo from TTCO will give an overview on how Deep Tech companies can use human-centred design to approach customers and services. Zhaoru Lin, COO of AbAsia BioLabs will share her experience in spinning out a deep tech company, touching on the soft skills needed to transition from a technical role to an operational and business one in a fireside chat hosted by Kostas Vavitsas, consortium manager of SINERGY. 4:00pm - 4:30pm: Registration 4:30pm - 5:00pm: Human-Centered Design to Elevate Deep Tech Customer Experience by Trina Teo (Principal Consultant, TTCO) 5:00pm – 5:45pm: Fireside Chat with Lin Zhaoru (COO, AbAsia BioLabs) and Kostas Vavitsas (Consortium Manager, SINERGY) 5:45pm – 6:30pm: Networking and Refreshments (Public) / Closed-Door Discussion & Drinks

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Date: 09 Nov 2023, Thursday
Time: 4:00 PM - 6:30 PM (GMT +8:00) Kuala Lumpur, Singapore
Location: 32 Carpenter Street, 059911


Moderator's Profile:

Kostas Vavitsas, Consortium Manager, Singapore Consortium for Synthetic Biology (SINERGY)
Kostas Vavitsas

Dr. Kostas Vavitsas is the Manager of the Singapore Consortium for Synthetic Biology (SINERGY). He received his PhD in Biotechnology from the University of Copenhagen, Denmark, and has held research positions at the University of Queensland, Australia, and the University of Athens, Greece. Kostas has worked as science writer and editor, and was previously a freelance consultant in Biotechnology and Synthetic Biology.

Speaker's Profile:

Trina Teo, Innovation Design Consultant, TTCO
Trina Teo

Trina is a principal consultant at TTCO, catalysing change for the better – she creates the evolutionary pathways to Industry 5.0 by intersecting the powers of Human Centred Design, Innovation Strategy, and a clear eye on the Zeitgeist. Her mission is to elevate human consciousness and uplift technology and business strategies. Her experience includes the creation of new ventures, products, and experiences and design for business-as-whole focused on Venture Building, Digital Transformation and Change Mgmt.

Speaker's Profile:

Zhaoru Lin, COO, AbAsia BioLabs
Zhaoru Lin

Dr. Lin Zhaoru is the COO at AbAsia BioLabs where she manages operations, regulatory, sales, and R&D. With a Biology degree from University College London and a PhD in Pathology from Cambridge University, she has forged a unique path. Zhaoru's entrepreneurial spirit led her to establish Biotech Connection Singapore (previously known as Oxbridge Biotech Roundtable), addressing the gap between academia and industry. She's also excelled in pivotal roles in medical device development and lab administration. Now, with a decade of expertise, she's fulfilling her dream of leading a company. In her previous role, Zhaoru spearheaded product development at Vivo Diagnostics during a two-year secondment, gaining invaluable experience in project management and regulatory compliance. Later, as Head of Scientific and Business Administration at A*STAR's p53 Laboratory, she navigated diverse functions, from business development to comprehensive lab administration.