Hong Kong – Where Dynamic Start-ups Grow and Soar
Up to 2019, Hong Kong has been ranked as the world’s freest economy for 25 years consecutively by the Heritage Foundation. In 2019, there were more than 9,000 companies with parent companies outside Hong Kong operating in this vibrant city, with more than 1,500 of them being the Regional Headquarters.. Many of these companies have placed their strategic functions such as sales, operations, research and development (R&D), distribution and corporate treasury centres in the city.
Hong Kong’s free market economy is supported by a pro-business environment with a simple tax regime, free flow of capital and information, world class infrastructure and a pool of multi-skilled talent.
Besides foreign MNCs and SMEs that have established presence in Hong Kong, an increasing number of start-ups have also chosen to use Hong Kong as a launch pad for their expansion.
Snapshot of Hong Kong’s Start-up Ecosystem:
From 2014 – 2019, the number of start-ups in Hong Kong increased by about 200%. To date, there are 3,184 start-ups employing 12,478 employees across 92 co-work spaces, incubators and accelerators.
On the back of low taxes, progressive visa policies for tech talent and government funding for innovation and technology initiatives, investments in these start-ups reached USD 720 mil in 2019. Seven official unicorns have also emerged from the Hong Kong start-up community.
Hong Kong’s appeal as a start-up hub extends to a wide variety of industries that include Creative Services, Financial Technology, e-commerce, Logistics, Medical Technology and ICT.
Recognising the immense potential of start-ups to scale and grow, the Hong Kong government is committed to nurture its start-up community by co-investing with private venture capitalists, facilitating technology adoption and patent application, as well as supporting start-ups’ market development through industry-focused funding schemes.
As the agency spearheading the attraction of foreign investments in Hong Kong, Invest Hong Kong (InvestHK) launched StartmeupHK that is one of the most successful initiatives in Asia to help founders of innovative and scalable start-ups from all over the world to expand their businesses in Hong Kong. Through its annual StartmeupHK Festival that is entering its fifth year, investors and potential start-ups are drawn to the latest ideas, trends and innovation that serve to foster new collaborations and spark new investments.
To be held from 6-11 July this year, the Startmeup HK Festival will focus on the themes of lifestyle and retail and logistics innovation technology, smart city, artificial intelligence, the Internet of things, e-sports, property tech, environment and sustainability. The event will also see the finals of the global Jumpstarter (the world’s largest online pitching contest funded by Alibaba and HSBC) and WHub (Hong Kong’s largest start-up community) start-up pitching competitions.
InvestHK is the department of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) Government responsible for attracting Foreign Direct Investment, supporting overseas businesses to set up and expand in Hong Kong.
Our vision is to strengthen Hong Kong’s status as the leading international business location in Asia. With an overseas network of staff and representatives based in 30 key business cities worldwide, we aim to assist overseas entrepreneurs, SMEs and multinationals that wish to set up an office or expand their existing business in Hong Kong.
We offer free advice and services to support companies from the planning stage right through to the launch and expansion of their business.
To learn more about InvestHK and its services, please visit www.investhk.gov.hk
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