The Forum’s Inauguration Celebrates 6th Anniversary of Cyberport Investors Network (CIN), Standing as a Network of Over 170 Members Facilitated an Accumulated Investment of over HK$ 2 billion (US$ 255 Million)
HONG KONG SAR – Media OutReach – 1 November 2023 – Cyberport Venture Capital Forum 2023, an annual premier event in the global venture capital scene organised by Cyberport, inaugurated yesterday. Themed “Venture Forward: Game Changing through Innovation”, the 2-day hybrid forum gathers a dynamic blend of over 80 world’s influential venture experts, entrepreneurial visionaries and innovative thinkers, who delve into the prospects and strategies for the venture capital market to capitalise on emerging trends such as Web3 and artificial intelligence (AI). As global economic momentum shifts eastward, this year’s Forum is also taking the lead in fostering regional collaboration, with specific focuses on the Middle East, ASEAN, and the Greater Bay Area, recognising them as promising hubs of opportunity.Cyberport Venture Capital Forum 2023 (CVCF) kicked off yesterday with over 80 world renowned venture experts and innovative thinkers discussing prospects and strategies for the venture capital market.
Professor Sun Dong, Secretary for Innovation, Technology and Industry of the HKSAR Government, said in his remarks, “Cyberport has all along been a powerhouse in our vibrant I&T community. A few weeks ago, we were honoured to receive the delegation of the Chinese Ministry of Science and Technology, awarding Cyberport as the ‘State-level Scientific and Technological Incubator’ since 2020. This is a recognition of Cyberport’s steering efforts and remarkable achievements in providing incubation and support services to the Hong Kong start-up enterprises. I&T development, start-up incubation, financing, and long-term growth must come as one to make the whole entrepreneurship ecosystem work. Let us all take forward strides and venture into a new exciting chapter of the digitalised world.”
“As we ‘venture forward’, innovation is the key to ‘change the game'”, said Simon Chan, Chairman of Cyberport, “The Policy Address, announced last week, included an AI supercomputing centre to be built in Cyberport in phases from 2024, to support the huge demand for computing power from R&D, academic and industry sectors and promote AI ecosystem and industry development. This manifests the key role of emerging technologies like AI in bringing Hong Kong’s I&T developments to new heights. With Hong Kong strategically positioned as the “Eight Centres” outlined in the 14th Five-year plan, we aspire to amplify the presence of Hong Kong’s I&T on the world’s stage, by creating greater synergy with the Government and different counterparts. We hope the insights shared at CVCF this year will help all of us navigate the new frontiers of venture capital ahead.”
Resilient Fundraising Performance Despite Market Volatility
Despite global venture capital market fluctuations and uncertainties, Cyberport community companies have maintained a robust fundraising performance over the past year. More than HK$3 billion (over US$ 380 million) was fundraised in the period from October 2022 to September 2023 alone, from companies including Animoca Brands, bowtie, Endowus, Moonfare etc., bringing the accumulated funds raised by Cyberport community start-ups to HK$37.5 billion (over US$ 4.7 billion). For two decades, Cyberport’s ecosystem continues to experience healthy expansion; in the event Cyberport has also welcomed the 7th unicorn, CertiK, into the fold.
Cyberport continues to play a pivotal role in promoting and facilitating investment matching, as well as supporting startup fundraising through the Cyberport Macro Fund (CMF). From October 2022 to September 2023, Cyberport injected capital through the CMF with investment units into two Cyberport startups that focus on health tech and smart logistics, namely Gense Technologies and alfred24 respectively. CMF has invested in 27 start-up projects, and CMF together with co-investments, the total investment reached HK$1.76 billion (US$226.1 million), resulting in a co-investment ratio of 1:9.
CIN Flourishes: Diversified Membership Base Expands in GBA, SEA, and Asia
Marking its 6th year, Cyberport Investors Network (CIN) continues its robust growth trajectory, empowering its start-up community through expanding the network locally and internationally, creating a good deal source for investors in the network, while helping startups to improve the quality of pitching. From October 2022 to September 2023 alone, CIN facilitated investments exceeding HK$340 million (over US$ 43.4 million), and an accumulated investment of over HK$2 billion (US$ 255 million) across a total of 75 projects.
CIN now proudly stands as a network of over 170 members comprising venture capital funds, accelerators or angel funds, family offices, corporate venture capital (CVC) and banks, and private equities. The past year recorded more than 20 new entities joining the network. Significantly, the diversity of CIN’s membership base has increased, with a considerable number of members from Hong Kong, Mainland China, as well as Southeast Asia, Asia Pacific, Americas and Europe. This growth signifies an influx of investment liquidity from these regions.
Hendrick Sin, Chairperson of Cyberport Investors Network (CIN) Steering Group and Cyberport Macro Fund (CMF) Investment Committee; Co-Founder & Vice Chairman, CMGE Technology Group Limited said, “Despite the turbulent currents in this year’s capital market, ‘smart money’ is still in place – investors continue to seek promising projects to support, with their primary focus being undeniable evidence of business sustainability. CIN has acted as a compass for both startups and investors, aiding them to be on the front foot to capture emerging opportunities. As the HKSAR Government continues to strengthen regional cooperation with the markets of ASEAN and the Middle East, looking ahead, CIN and CMF will continue to collaborate synergistically to foster investment matching and business collaboration opportunities to amplify Hong Kong start-ups’ impact.”
A Round up on Best Ways to forward I&T
With the goal to help businesses to navigate the future, CVCF 2023 three keynotes were presented by renowned international guests Alireza Masrour, General Partner of Plug & Play, a global innovation accelerator, Rohit Talwar, Global Futurist of Fast Future, a credible forward-looking research and insights house, and Irene Chu, Head of New Economy and Life Sciences of KPMG (Hong Kong), giving the audience valuable insights on investing efficiently in fast-growth businesses in the AI era.
Philip Yung, Director-General of Office for Attracting Strategic Enterprises (Financial Secretary’s Office) and Duncan Chiu, HKSAR Legislative Council Member (Technology and Innovation) examined with other speakers on the government’s new initiatives, strategies and support bolstering the development of Hong Kong’s I&T industry. Hendrick Sin, Chairperson of Cyberport Investors Network (CIN) Steering Group and Cyberport Macro Fund (CMF) Investment Committee, along with other business leaders discussed the investment opportunities and challenges upon China’s post-pandemic reopening and recovery.
Another key pillar that underpinned this year’s Forum is the I&T driving forces from emerging technologies, notably Web3 and AI. Jupiter Zheng Jialiang, Partner at HashKey Capital, imparted his insights on the investment opportunities within Web3 for the year 2024, while Sandeep Nailwal, Co-Founder of Polygon, emphasised the importance of supporting Web3 infrastructure and real-world applications.
In discussions concerning new capital markets, Medea Nocentini of Global Ventures, examined deal-making opportunities for NextGen startups in unstable times. Meanwhile, Elissa Liu of Lanchi Ventures, highlighted the Greater Bay Area’s role in spearheading Hong Kong’s position as a fundraising and expansion platform and gateway, and Sonia Weymuller, Co-Founder and General Partner of VentureSouq (VSQ), shed light on Middle East investors and Asia-based venture capitalists in frontier technologies, smart industries, and technology for social good.
For programme schedules and full speaker line-up at this year’s CVCF, please visit: http://cvcf.cyberport.hk/
Cyberport is Hong Kong’s digital technology flagship and incubator for entrepreneurship with over 2,000 members including over 900 onsite and close to 1,100 offsite start-ups and technology companies. It is managed by Hong Kong Cyberport Management Company Limited, wholly owned by the Hong Kong SAR Government. With a vision to be the hub for digital technology, thereby creating a new economic driver for Hong Kong, Cyberport is committed to nurturing a vibrant tech ecosystem by cultivating talent, promoting entrepreneurship among youth, supporting start-ups, fostering industry development by promoting strategic collaboration with local and international partners, and integrating new and traditional economies by accelerating digital transformation in public and private sectors.
For more information, please visit www.cyberport.hk