City University of Hong Kong today launched the first ever HK Tech 300 Southeast Asia Start-up Competition (HK Tech 300 SEA Competition) in Kuala Lumpur, extending the highly anticipated innovation and entrepreneurship programme to Southeast Asia to foster start-ups and innovation and technology development in the region.
A large-scale flagship innovation and entrepreneurship programme by City University of Hong Kong, HK Tech 300 was organised with a total commitment of up to HK$600 million (about MYR 340 million).
“We are thrilled to expand our successful HK Tech 300 initiative to Southeast Asia,” said Professor Way Kuo, President and University Distinguished Professor of City University of Hong Kong. “This Competition presents a unique opportunity for aspiring entrepreneurs in the region to gain exposure and secure funding for their projects, and will help translate City University of Hong Kong’s outstanding research into applications, which can have a transformative impact on the entrepreneurship landscape here. We are excited to witness the positive impact of HK Tech 300 on the region and are committed to supporting and empowering innovative ideas in this part of the world.”
The HK Tech 300 SEA Competition is being held in partnership with universities and incubators in the region, including Universiti Malaya (UM) and Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM) from Malaysia, Universiti Brunei Darussalam (UBD) from Brunei Darussalam, Chulalongkorn University from Thailand, Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC), Selangor Information Technology and Digital Economy Corporation (SIDEC), and various chambers of commerce. Through these partners, the Competition will bring together the most promising start-ups in the region to join the competition. The Top 10 winners will each be awarded Angel Fund investment of up to HK$1 million (about MYR 565,000), providing a significant boost for their entrepreneurial endeavours.
Datuk Seri Khaled Mohamed Nordin, Minister of Higher Education, Malaysia, said, “A thriving small and medium enterprise (SME) and start-up ecosystem is essential for sustainable digital development. The Malaysian Higher Education Ministry welcomes City University of Hong Kong’s decision to launch this regional edition of HK Tech 300 in Malaysia, as it demonstrates the success of Malaysia’s efforts to accelerate the digital economy and produce knowledgeable graduates with excellent marketability. I believe the exposure and guidance they will receive from the Competition, will enable them to contribute to the expanding digital ecosystem.”
Emeritus Professor Dato’ Dr Morshidi Sirat, Higher Education Adviser to the Minister of Higher Education, in representing Datuk Seri Khaled and delivered his speech during the launch event at Hilton Kuala Lumpur.
Professor Dr Sabri Musa, Acting Deputy Vice-Chancellor of Universiti Malaya said that they are delighted to be a partner in the Competition and hope to create synergy for the start-up ecosystem in the region.
Since its launch in March 2021, the HK Tech 300 programme has made significant strides towards its goal of creating 300 start-ups within three years. With a total allocation of HK$500 million in 2021, the programme is a strategic move to translate City University of Hong Kong’s groundbreaking research results and intellectual property into practical applications, while simultaneously providing valuable opportunities for young talent and aspiring entrepreneurs to grow and learn. To further support the programme, the University added an additional of HK$100 million (about MYR 56.5 million) this year.
To date, HK Tech 300 has cultivated more than 560 start-up teams, each of which received a HK$100,000 (about MYR 56,500) Seed Fund, and it has provided up to HK$1 million (about MYR 565,000) in Angel Fund investment to more than 110 start-up companies.
Riding on the success and positive impact of the Programme, City University of Hong Kong has expanded the HK Tech 300 initiative to Southeast Asia, with Malaysia chosen as the location for the launch of the inaugural HK Tech 300 SEA Competition, demonstrating its vision and determination to make HK Tech 300 the biggest university-based innovation and entrepreneurship programme in Asia.
The expansion aims to promote technology transfer and commercialisation in the region, showcasing the University’s commitment to support Southeast Asian start-ups in expanding their business to Hong Kong, Mainland China and the whole region, leveraging the unique advantages and resources available in Hong Kong.
Visit www.cityu.edu.hk/hktech300/seasia for more information.