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Hong Kong Startup News Round Up - 2018 03 18

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Ofo raises US$866 million

Chinese bike-sharing start-up Ofo, also operating in Hong Kong (https://whub.io/startups/ofo-hk-limited), said it has secured US$866 million in a new round of financing led by Alibaba. This new round is so far the biggest in China’s ruthlessly competitive bike-sharing sector. Last July Ofo received E round financing of US$700 million led by Alibaba, while Mobike’s latest round was US$600 million in a Series E round led by Tencent Holdings last June. Both, Ofo and Mobike, together account for 90 per cent of the market, according to research firm Cheetah Global Think Tank, as significant consolidation has pushed out more than 20 start-ups over the past. Due to fierce price wars designed to gain market share, neither of the two bike sharing companies have been able to turn a profit.


HK 2018 FinTech Week to go cross boarder

This year, FINNOVASIA has been appointed by Invest Hong Kong to organise the entire Hong Kong FinTech Week, taking place end October/beginning November 2018. It is set to offer an entirely new dimension that taps both Hong Kong’s pre-eminent position as Asia’s financial hub and its unique position as an entry point to the Greater Bay Area: It’s going to be the world's first cross-border event, featuring the best of FinTech in HongKong, China and globally, expecting over 5,000 attendees from 40 countries. “This year we want to put the focus on Hong Kong’s vital position and appeal as a conduit to the Greater Bay Area, which comprises half a dozen cities and 70 million people around the Pearl River Delta. It’s a powerful proposition and working with Shenzhen is a great way to showcase the opportunities.” said Charles d'Haussy, Head of FinTech for InvestHK. 

(Photo Credit: InvestHK)

HKUST “$1M Dollar Entrepreneurship Competition 2018” also sponsored by The Mills

As a supporting organisation of HKUST’s “$1M Dollar Entrepreneurship Competition 2018”, WHub is excited to report that Nan Fung and The Mills announced a sponsorship of $300K HKD and a Platinum sponsorship. This competition acts as a catalyst platform to inspire and support HKUST students and alumni to form teams to take new ideas and technologies forward as startups and businesses. HKUST is one of Asia’s leading universities when it comes to technology and innovation, providing world-class education to nurturing global technology powerhouses like DJI.
Application deadline is coming up soon: March 22, 2018, apply here: https://onemilliondollar.ust.hk/index. 


FinTech Accelerator Supercharger launches 3rd batch

SuperCharger is back for its 3rd program in Hong Kong! This round’s batch includes award-winning startups who have completed multiple proof-of-concepts and partnership deals with Tier 1 financial institutions, including the Bank of England. The Launch Day with the 10 global Fintech companies is taking place next week on Tuesday, March 20th, in Sheung Wan’s naked Hub Co-Working Space. To register: http://bit.ly/SuperC3.

Here is the SuperCharger 2018 Hong Kong cohort:
AIZEN, Korea (http://www.aizenglobal.com/) - Credit Scoring and Management with Artificial Intelligence
cyberProductivity, Poland (http://www.cyberproductivity.pl/en/) - SME Accounting with Artificial Intelligence
Enforcd, United Kingdom (https://www.enforcd.com/) - Regulatory Intelligence (RegTech)
Exate Technology, United Kingdom (http://www.exatetech.com/) - Data Privacy Management (RegTech)
FundPark, Hong Kong (https://whub.io/startups/fundpark) - Trade Finance for SME
gini, Hong Kong (https://whub.io/startups/gini) - Personal Financial Management
Investment Navigator, Switzerland (https://www.investmentnavigator.com/) - Wealth Advisory
Know Your Customer, Ireland (https://www.knowyourcustomer.com/about-kyc/) - Client on-boarding
Mindbridge AI, Canada (https://www.mindbridge.ai/) - Financial Auditing with Artificial Intelligence
vPhrase, India (https://www.vphrase.com/) - Analytics and Insights


Google to ban ICO ads, following Facebook

Google will ban online advertisements promoting cryptocurrencies and initial coin offerings (ICOs) starting in June, part of a broader crackdown on the marketing of a new breed of high-risk financial products. Facebook, Google’s primary rival for advertising dollars, took a similar step in January, leaving the two largest web advertisement sellers out of reach of the nascent digital currency sector. Facebook had banned all advertisements that promote cryptocurrencies to prevent advertisers from marketing “financial products and services frequently associated with misleading or deceptive promotional practices”. The move shines a spotlight on the US social media giant as part of a broader debate about the role of social media in disseminating news and the fine line between vetting and censorship.

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