PolyU launches InnoHub to support regional start-up collaborations
The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) launched on 15 March the PolyU InnoHub, a co-creation and co-working space on campus for the University community and stakeholders to further promote innovation and entrepreneurship at a regional level. It is one of the celebratory events for PolyU's 80th Anniversary.
The ceremony was officiated by Mr Nicholas Yang, Secretary for Innovation and Technology, the Government of HKSAR; Mr Chan Tze-ching, Chairman of the PolyU Council; and Professor Timothy W. Tong, President of PolyU.
Speaking at the ceremony, Mr Chan Tze-ching said, "PolyU, as a leading higher education institution in Hong Kong and Asia, is committed to nurturing young innovators and entrepreneurs with creative mind-set and global perspective."
Professor Timothy W. Tong said, "InnoHub is significant in serving as a focal point to facilitate regional partnership and further build up a regional entrepreneurship community."
Located in the Jockey Club Innovation Tower on campus, InnoHub will play a significant role as a catalyst for achieving "the 4Cs": Convergence of talents and technologies; Connection of students, academia, entrepreneurs and the industry; Collaboration of multi-disciplinary and cross-sectors projects; and a Community of practice and regional networks.
In addition, PolyU has confirmed bilateral collaborative agreements with a number of partnering organisations in the region to strengthen its collaborations in knowledge transfer and entrepreneurship. Examples of the regional partners are Fudan University, National Cheng Kung University, National Taiwan University, National University of Singapore, start-up accelerator Techcode, while local partners include Hong Kong Science and Technology Parks Corporation and Hong Kong Business Angel Network.
InnoHub will be open to groups including the PolyU supported start-ups, the partnering organisations and investors of the start-ups. The start-ups and student teams will also be able to access the necessary resources and business mentorship supports and pre-incubation services.
PolyU also announced the launch of the Student Entrepreneurial Proof-of-Concept Funding Scheme (SEPOC) today. The Scheme complements the conventional classroom entrepreneurial education by providing further resources, training and business mentorship to students. A proof-of-concept fund of up to HK$30,000 will be awarded to student(s) for developing prototypes and conducting market validation to their innovative ideas generated from the class. Through SEPOC, the gap between classroom learning and real-life practice on entrepreneurship can be bridged. Under SEPOC, a funding of HK$1.4 million a year has been set aside to support up to 42 teams.
PolyU has developed a micro funding platform by operating five funding schemes with different areas and target audience. It has supported close to 200 start-ups, with over 7,600 young people trained in the area of entrepreneurship.