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The HKUST Entrepreneurship Fund Helps Technology Start-ups

23/12/2020

Aligning with HKUST’s Knowledge Transfer Mission and with a view to strengthening the promotion of entrepreneurship spirit among HKUST stakeholders leading to social and economic impact, the HKUST Entrepreneurship Fund (“E-Fund”), with an initial fund size of HK$50M committed by HKUST, was established for the benefit of promising HKUST technology start-up companies.  Selected companies may receive up to HK$2 million of investment from HKUST in support of activities including research and development, as well as business and market development. Start-ups featuring innovative technologies and/or business models would have advantages of being selected.

Since establishment, E-Fund has reviewed more than 80 HKUST deals, established a strong co-investor network, built up a diverse advisors pool, and supported five start-ups, covering various sectors including AI & big data analytics, ICT, biomedical, semiconductor, and advanced manufacturing.

E-Fund can either syndicate with qualified co-investment partners or act as a lead investor. The Co-Investment Partners of E-Fund, who are managing more than HK$7 billion investment pool, comprise of institutional venture capitals (VCs) including financial VCs, corporate VCs, family offices, or corporate entities, and they covered a wide range of technology areas and industries.    

Besides co-investing with partners, E-Fund can also take its own initiative to invest into start-ups without Co-Investment Partners.  Such start-ups could be very early-staged companies that may not be the focus of typical Co-Investment Partners.

E-Fund not only can help to bridge the funding gap of HKUST start-ups before they can secure external funding to grow and expand, but can also engage other VC funds and experts more closely within the HKUST start-up ecosystem, potentially providing investments, strategic values, as well as guidance/advice.  In addition to creating a multiplier effect in availing more funds to HKUST start-ups, the resources pool that could be created and E-Fund can provide support to start-ups in a very comprehensive manner. E-Fund could then potentially become an important hub for the HKUST entrepreneurship community, connecting competent and creative entrepreneurs, high-quality start-ups with innovative technologies and business models, as well as reputable VCs and corporates.

To learn more about the E-Fund, please visit: https://e-fund.hkust.edu.hk