Posted in: Press Releases
September 26, 2014
Invest Hong Kong (InvestHK) announced today (September 26) the 12 winners of its 2014 StartmeupHK Venture Programme, who will compete further in the Grand Finale in November for three Grand Prizes.
The 12 ventures come from a wide range of locations: Hong Kong, Canada, Finland, Germany, India, Israel, Japan, Singapore, Sweden and the US. Their business fields are also diverse and cover digital marketing, advertising, freight pricing, home design, an open source operating system, open source sailing robots and more (see table attached).
The 12 winners include nine in category one (early-to-growth stage) and three in category two (concept and prototype stage). Each venture was chosen by the assessors for the scale of the problem or opportunity being addressed, the effectiveness of the solution and its impact, the venture's viability, sustainability and scalability, and the economic benefit to Hong Kong in terms of knowledge and skills, job creation, social and environmental value and more.
At the culmination of this year's StartmeupHK programme, the Venture Forum on November 11, three Grand Award Winners plus respective winners for the individual FinTech, Smart City and Data Analytics Awards will be chosen by the judges and forum attendees.
The 2014 StartmeupHK Venture Programme is the second global startup competition organised by InvestHK as part of the department's initiative to raise the profile of Hong Kong as the leading hub of innovation and entrepreneurship in Asia. This year the department received 550 entries from 47 economies, compared to 384 entries from 39 economies in 2013.
The Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development, Mr Gregory So, congratulated the 12 winners and said, "The startup scene in Hong Kong has grown rapidly. It is home to roughly 600 to 800 startups, many of them led by overseas entrepreneurs. An increasing number of larger foreign companies have established their regional base and even put their global headquarters or global functions in Hong Kong. At the same time, more and more Mainland enterprises are using Hong Kong to 'go global'. Our city presents exciting opportunities for innovation and entrepreneurship. Now is the right time for founders and investors from all over the world to come to Hong Kong and experience our thriving startup community," he said.
InvestHK's Director-General of Investment Promotion, Mr Simon Galpin, said that the StartmeupHK Venture Programme had attracted not only scalable startups but also the attention of local and overseas family offices and high-net-worth individuals about the investment potential Hong Kong's startup ecosystem has to offer.
Mr Galpin said, "It is important for Hong Kong to seize the opportunities brought by startups and to grow the city's startup ecosystem. I believe that the StartmeupHK Venture Programme is a terrific way to focus attention on this fast-growing segment of our economy."
Mr Galpin added that the upcoming StartmeupHK Week from November 10 to 14 is a collaborative effort by InvestHK and the broader startup community in the city to generate awareness of Hong Kong's potential as the regional hub for entrepreneurs. He anticipated that several hundred people in the local and overseas startup communities would attend the Venture Forum to meet the finalists on November 11.
"The Forum will connect entrepreneurs with investors and business mentors in one of the largest events of its kind ever staged in Hong Kong," Mr Galpin said.
Details of the StartmeupHK Venture Programme 2014 are available on the dedicated website www.startmeup.hk. The site offers a one-stop portal to the city's startup community, and is the first such Hong Kong Government portal on startups. It also lists the latest startup events and signposts users to various government incentive and incubation schemes.
Sponsors of the 2014 StartmeupHK Competition include Baker Tilly, CoCoon, CWL Partners, DLA Piper, Dorsett Hospitality, EastFunding.co, Fintrade-Mercer Advisor Ltd, Fintrade-Mercer Corporate Law Ltd, Hong Kong Commons, Loft, NEST, Orangefield, PaperclipHK, PricewaterhouseCoopers, Soft Layer-IBM, Tanner De Witt and WYND Co-Working Space. The three Special Awards are sponsored by Accenture (FinTech), Schneider Electric (Smart City) and KPMG (Data Analytics) respectively.
InvestHK is the department of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Government established in July 2000 to attract 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 2014, InvestHK had completed over 3 300 investment projects creating more than 36 400 new jobs in the first year of operation or expansion and over HK$88 billion of investment. For more information, please visit www.investhk.gov.hk.
Chinese version on next page.
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