CityU launches 1st nationwide HK Tech 300 Start-up Competition to promote start-up entrepreneurship in Hong Kong and mainland China

City University of Hong Kong (CityU) announced in March 2021 the launch of the HK Tech 300 innovation and entrepreneurship programme, which is a large-scale HK$500 million flagship programme aspiring to be the best of its kind among universities in Asia. To further drive innovation and technology (I&T) development in Hong Kong and mainland China through a contest, CityU announced the first nationwide HK Tech 300 Start-up Competition, which will be held in various regions on the mainland. Projects are called for in the following fields: biotech and health, deep tech, fintech, information technology and artificial intelligence (AI), and energy and green technology.

CityU students, alumni and researchers, as well as members of the public wishing to leverage the University’s intellectual property and technology to set up a start-up, are welcome to join the Competition. Ten winning start-ups will each be awarded RMB$1 million in angel fund investment. Echoing HK Tech 300’s theme “Venture Beyond Boundaries”, the Competition will provide comprehensive incubation and start-up entrepreneurial support for young entrepreneurs in Hong Kong and the mainland.

A virtual launch ceremony was held on 20 June. Officiating guests included Dr David Chung Wai-keung, Under Secretary for Innovation and Technology, HKSAR; Professor Jiang Jianxiang, Director-General of the Department of Educational, Scientific and Technological Affairs of the Liaison Office of the Central People’s Government in the HKSAR (the Liaison Office); Mr Liu Zhiming, Former First Class Inspector of the Department of International Cooperation (Office of Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan Affairs), Ministry of Science and Technology of China (MOST), Chief Representative of the Office of MOST in HKSAR; Mr Li Youping, Deputy Director of Torch High Technology Industry Development Center, Ministry of Science and Technology; Mr Li Yong, Deputy Director-General of the Investment Promotion Agency of the Ministry of Commerce; Mr Lou Yanfeng, Deputy Director-General of the Science Technology and Innovation Committee of Shenzhen Municipality; Mr Chen Xu, Vice Director-General of the Science and Technology Bureau of Chengdu; Mr Zhou Yiping, Vice Director of Changsha Municipal Science and Technology Bureau; Mr Li Xianghai, Vice Director-General of the Science and Technology Bureau of Qingdao; and Professor Matthew Lee Kwok-on, Acting President of CityU. Also joining the event were representatives from governments and partner organisations, as well as CityU alumni, from participating cities, including Hong Kong, Beijing, Shanghai, Shenzhen, Chengdu, Changsha, Qingdao and Suzhou.

In his welcome remarks, Professor Lee highlighted that CityU had been a strong advocate for knowledge transfer and the integration of research and teaching. “The University is internationally acclaimed for its research and innovation, and for contributing to society. The Competition is an extension of the successful launch of HK Tech 300 in Hong Kong. It aims to synergise the advantages and resources of Hong Kong and the mainland, encourage exchange and collaboration in innovation, promote the application of CityU’s research achievements and intellectual property on the mainland, and build a more robust start-up environment on both sides of the border. The Competition will enhance CityU’s influence in I&T and its connections with alumni on the mainland. It will also help establish Hong Kong as an ‘International Innovation Centre’,” he said.

In his remarks, Dr Chung said he was pleased to see the positive response to the HK Tech 300 programme, which has become a new driving force in the start-up scene. “We welcome CityU’s initiative in mainland China. The Competition will bring about a closer partnership among start-ups and greater assimilation in incubation between the two places, resulting in a new vibe in the start-up scene in Hong Kong and the mainland.”

The Competition jury will select 40 start-ups from seven clusters on the mainland, together with 10 start-ups from Hong Kong, to compete for 10 awards. Each winner will receive an angel fund investment of RMB$1 million, and related incubation and support, including the use of co-working space for HK Tech 300 in CityU and its Shenzhen and Chengdu research institutes, the HK Tech 300 Mentorship Scheme, and matching services for funding, talent and related business support.

Application details will be released on 21 June 2022. Interested parties may visit the homepage of HK Tech 300 Start-up Competition: https://www.cityu.edu.hk/hktech300/start-up-competition.

The HK Tech 300 Start-up Competition is an accredited event for the Celebration of the 25th Anniversary of the Establishment of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region.

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