Category Archives: Hong Kong Business

Hong Kong Business

InvestHK launches StartmeupHK Venture Programme to boost Hong Kong’s position as world’s most promising start-up hub

Invest Hong Kong (InvestHK) today (July 9) announced the launch of its StartmeupHK Venture Programme 2013 to attract local and overseas entrepreneur-led businesses to set up or expand in Hong Kong.


The Venture Programme features a global competition for innovative and high-impact entrepreneurs. It will culminate in a week-long event in December 2013 in which 12 shortlisted finalists will be provided with access to business partners, financial capital, market knowledge and marketing opportunities. They will also compete to win prizes including free advisory services such as accounting, legal, design and branding services, plus free work/retail space provided by sponsors and programme partners.

Entries can be lodged until the closing date of August 26, 2013. First-time or serial entrepreneurs who have an interest in expanding globally via Hong Kong and lead an early to growth stage venture are eligible to enter.

An assessment based on the team’s vision and competency, the value proposition of the business, the business model and the potential benefits to Hong Kong will see the 12 overseas finalists flown to Hong Kong for the final stages of the competition between December 4 and 7. After pitching their businesses to a panel of judges and Hong Kong’s business community at a forum, six finalists will be selected to compete for three Grand Awards.

Judges and speakers at the forum on December 5 will include heavyweights in the local and global start-up and venture capital industry: the founder of global venture capital firm Draper Fisher Jurvetson, Mr Timothy Draper; the Executive Vice President, Strategy, Schneider Electric, Mr Michel Crochon; the Chief Representative of Silicon Valley Bank, China, Mr Mike Yahng; the CEO of investment firm Golien, Mr Max Burger; the Vice President of Asia Pacific, China and Japan, Strategy and Business Development, for global health services provider IMS Health, Mr Andy Liu; the founder and CEO of digital solutions company Outblaze, Mr Yat Siu; the Executive Director and Group Chief Financial and Operating Officer of MF Jebsen, Mr Alvin Miu; the Publisher and CEO of WealthAsia Group, Ms Elsa Pau; and Co-Chair of the Hong Kong Venture Capital and Private Equity Association’s Venture Committee, Mr Marvin Lai.


The Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development, Mr Gregory So, said, “Make no mistake, start-ups and entrepreneurs make significant contributions to Hong Kong. At a time when the world is facing ongoing economic uncertainty, we need new drivers to be able to generate economic growth, jobs and innovation in future.

“What InvestHK is doing to promote Hong Kong as a premier start-up destination in Asia and attract start-up entrepreneurs will help build the city’s start-up ecosystem – an ecosystem where overseas and local entrepreneurs can meet, exchange ideas, discover synergies and access markets, capital and talent together,” he said.

The Director-General of Investment Promotion, Mr Simon Galpin, said that in the past two to three years, InvestHK has seen a rising number of entrepreneurs setting up business in Hong Kong; the percentage of such projects in InvestHK’s portfolio has risen from less than 10 per cent to over 15 per cent in 2013.

“These businesses may start small and employ only a few people in the beginning, but they also create jobs through outsourcing some of their activities to local service providers. In fact, some of these businesses grow very quickly, employing 50 or more people within one to two years,” Mr Galpin said.

“And just as, if not more, important are the innovative business ideas and skills they bring to Hong Kong, which lend further competitive advantage to our economy in the long run,” he added.

Details and the online entry form for the StartmeupHK Venture Programme 2013 are available on InvestHK’s dedicated website The site offers a one-stop portal to the start-up community in the city, and is the first such Hong Kong Government portal on start-ups for entrepreneurs. It also lists the latest start-up events and signposts browsers to various government incentives and incubation schemes.

About InvestHK

InvestHK is the department of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Government established in July 2000 to take responsibility for Foreign Direct Investment and support overseas and Mainland businesses to set up or expand in Hong Kong. It provides free advice and customised services to help businesses succeed in Hong Kong’s vibrant economy. As at June 2013, InvestHK has completed over 2 900 investment projects creating more than 33 000 new jobs in the first year of operation or expansion and over HK$76 billion of investment. For more information, please visit

Start Me Up HK Ventures Programme Launch!!

InvestHK is launching a new Start Me Up HK Ventures Programme

Article is contributed by Rachel Chan, Founder and Chief Catalyst, INNOFOCO

InvestHK, a HKSAR Government department, is launching a new Start Me Up HK Ventures Programme with a similar scope to the MaD Venture programme (but without any age limit to the founder). Given InvestHK’s resources and global network of offices, we believe that they are in a better position to grow the venture programme on a sustainable basis. As such, we decided not to run the MaD Ventures Programme but instead I am helping InvestHK to run the Start Me Up HK Ventures Programme.

Start Me Up HK Ventures Programme

In essence, the Start Me Up HK Ventures Programme aims to help early to growth stage, innovative and high impact ventures develop their global businesses.  12 high potential entrepreneurs from around the world will be invited, through an open application process, to attend a 4-day programme in Hong Kong in the first week of December 2013. They will have the opportunities to pitch to potential investors and business partners, network with the entrepreneurial and business communities, obtain expert advice from business leaders, and attend leading design, innovation and technology events in Hong Kong. Three Grand Award Winners will be further selected from the 12 finalists. They will be awarded with free business matching, legal, accounting and design services, free work space, media exposure and marketing opportunities.

Start Me Up HK Ventures ProgrammeThe Start Me Up HK Ventures Programme will be open to applications from 1 July – 19 August. We are in the process of finalising the Programme details. I hope we could have the continuing support of NextupAsia in helping to promote and share the news of the Programme. We shall acknowledge your valuable support on the programme website and programme brochure. Many thanks!


Article is contributed by Rachel Chan, Founder and Chief Catalyst, INNOFOCO


Hong Kong Economy: How did it grow into such a Successful Economy?

How did Hong Kong grow into such a powerful economy?
Before Britain took over in 1840, Hong Kong was something of a nest of thieves, known as a base for pirates and hardly the sort of place anyone would have predicted would grow into today’s financial powerhouse.
The only hints of civilisation were a small Qing dynasty garrison at Kowloon and a nearby fishing village. The whole southern side of the island, now largely occupied by Repulse Bay, was a hideout for pirates.

Hong Kong Economy

Opium and banking
It was drugs run by the British that effectively started this Far Eastern dive for Jack Sparrow and his merry men off on its way to becoming the financial capital of Asia. Specifically, Opium controlled from Britain and distributed from Hong Kong got the ball rolling because its sheer scale and reach necessitated the establishment of sophisticated banking services. In 1865 the Hong Kong and Shanghai Banking Corporation was founded and this organisation then rapidly became the biggest and most influential bank east of Suez.

Hong Kong has also benefited enormously from its unique and rather ambiguous geographical location. It is both a part of China and separate from it, being ruled by British law whilst territorially a part of mainland China. Beijing was uncharacteristically canny here, effectively keeping an isolated window open onto the rest of the world by ceding a limited amount of autonomy to the island.
When Hong Kong rule was passed to the British, the latter was at the apex of empire and trade along the Silk Road was encouraged by the removal of import duties. Similarly, when the Communist Chinese later took the island over they too had by now become an industrial giant and Hong Kong repeated its earlier trick of being the distribution centre of the world.

Hong Kong Economic

Migration from PRC
When the Communists first took over China there was a massive brain drain from mainland China to Hong Kong. A large number of rich Chinese came across too, anxious to hang on to their savings and continue to live in the style to which they’d become accustomed, which meant lots of capital injection. There were also many poorer but highly motivated entrepreneurs in the mix.
Later, when the People’s Liberation Army entered Guangdong they halted at the Shenzhen River and for the next 20 years money was moved in and out of the People’s Republic of China only through Hong Kong, endowing the island with massive power and influence.

Asian Sentinel
The effective independence of Hong Kong, despite the close proximity of PRC and its authoritative leanings, is underlined by the fact that the Asian Sentinel is based here. Founded in 2006, this influential British web-based publication was set up to provide a government and media-independent platform for news, opinion and analysis on a wide range of Asian regional and national issues.

Hong Kong has also had rather more than its fair share of sheer luck. It could easily have gone the way of Goa or Aden but instead remained effectively a Western capitalist outpost instead of being snapped up by PRC as many feared would be the case on several occasions.

How To Network for Business Growth

Perhaps a particular book titled “How to network for business growth” will always remain lying on most marketers’ desk, and sometimes, even on veterans in the industry. Nevertheless, it goes to show that there isn’t a sure way, let alone the ever changing nature of networking that business people today need to continuously learn and adapt to. New business strategies, new trends and new techniques appear now and then; in fact even on new forms of media. Most businesses spend time finding the next business networking methods, only to find it irrelevant over time.

Continue reading How To Network for Business Growth