Taunggyi e-commence hackathon seeks participants to help businesses in Shan State grow and create jobs


Taunggyi e-commence hackathon seeks participants to help businesses in Shan State grow and create jobs

Seedstars Global

MAY 5, 2023

March 3, 2023 - Taunggyi, Myanmar - The Shan State E-Commerce Hackathon, taking place in Taunggyi on May 13, 2023, has announced the launch of an open call for participants. The hackathon offers local, tech-savvy people an opportunity to find solutions to help small businesses survive the ongoing economic hardship in Myanmar. They will develop their digital skills and create e-commerce solutions for businesses that will, in turn, help them grow and provide more stable jobs in Shan State. Interested applicants can sign up before May 5, 2023, on this link.



Hackathons bring groups of people together to quickly and intensively develop new technological approaches to solve problems. During this event, participants will work in teams to develop ideas for an e-commerce platform specifically tailored for Shan State, the biggest province in Myanmar and an important trading hub on the border of China, Thailand and Laos. Each team will have five hours to prepare a pitch to present to the jury, which is composed of representatives from UNDP Myanmar, entrepreneurs and tech specialists. The winning team will receive a cash prize.

Over the last two years, many small businesses in Myanmar have been struggling to survive. Conflict, electricity cuts, and soaring import costs create a difficult and uncertain environment to operate, while rising inflation is constraining people’s spending. Giving support to small businesses, which may lack the resources to adapt to these challenging circumstances, can help them find new and innovative ways to improve efficiency and access new customers. Ultimately, this can help businesses stay afloat, and provide much-needed jobs and income in Shan State.

Launched by Seedstars and UNDP Myanmar, the Shan State E-Commerce Hackathon offers innovators the opportunity to make a lasting, positive impact on their community. Participants will be encouraged to create e-commerce solutions that promote local businesses and generate jobs. The hackathon is also an opportunity for them to broaden their networks and deepen their e-commerce skills and knowledge.

Participants will gain access to valuable resources during and after the event. These include UNDP’s E-Learning platform for micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs), which offers courses in developing business strategies, optimizing operations, and obtaining financing. The Seedstars Investment Readiness E-Learning Platform, meanwhile, helps startups with fundraising and growing, and its Global Mentorship Platform connects participants with industry experts for guidance.

As more people in Myanmar use digital payments and shop online, business owners have a great opportunity to maximize this growing trend. By focusing on their digital operation, they can better access new financing options, reach more customers and develop wider business networks. However, as this is only a recent trend in Myanmar, support is needed to improve people’s digital skills and provide platforms to help businesses adapt, such as online shopping sites designed for the local market, and convenient digital payment options.

"In light of the ongoing challenges in Myanmar, we are launching the Shan State E-Commerce Hackathon to empower talented individuals to create lasting, positive change. Our focus is on bringing together local tech enthusiasts to not only support the growth of technology in Shan State but also to directly address the needs of the community and help make a tangible impact during these difficult times,” said Anurag Maloo, Head of Partnerships (Asia) at Seedstars.

Seedstars and UNDP Myanmar are also collaborating to develop an e-commerce website and mobile app for Shan State, which will help small businesses develop their digital operations.

To qualify for the Shan State E-Commerce Hackathon, participants must meet the following criteria:

  • Be a motivated individual or entrepreneur in Myanmar
  • Be fluent in Burmese
  • Be able to attend the hackathon on May 13, 2023 in Taunggyi, Shan State
  • Have a basic understanding of the Shan State market
  • Have a basic understanding of at least one of the following topics: the MSME environment; marketing; commerce; or technology, IT or software development.

Participants can apply to join the Shan State E-Commerce Hackathon from March 17 to April 28, 2023. To learn more about the event and applications, visit the website.



Seedstars is a Swiss-based company with a mission to impact people’s lives in emerging markets through technology and entrepreneurship. Seedstars works with the private and public sector to implement entrepreneurial capacity-building programs in order to create jobs and fuel economic growth.

The group runs Seedstars Programs that are designed to support entrepreneurs in varying stages of growth via training, education, mentoring, and access to resources. The company also partners, operates and invests in emerging venture capital funds in emerging markets and makes direct co- and follow-on investments in their portfolio companies through Seedstars Capital. To further support the next generation of changemakers, Seedstars Academy, a talent incubator, provides digital skills and startup-based immersive education.

Through these initiatives and partnerships, Seedstars is building a world-class community and network of changemakers in over 90 emerging ecosystems. For more information, visit https://www.seedstars.com/.


UNDP works in about 170 countries and territories, helping to eradicate poverty, reduce inequalities and exclusion, and build resilience so countries can sustain progress. In Myanmar, UNDP is working directly with communities across the country to help lessen their dependence on humanitarian assistance and build their own capacities to positively change their lives. This includes work to reduce urban and rural poverty, support small enterprises and help people find work, and improve community infrastructure, such as drainage and access to clean water. For more information, visit https://www.undp.org/myanmar.



Elizabeth Jones

Global Lead Program Operations

[email protected]


Michaela Villaroman

Media Relations

[email protected].

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