Last week Engage Invest Exploit (EIE) was successfully launched in Hong Kong and Shenzhen. EIE, staged by the University of Edinburgh’s Informatics Ventures, is Scotland’s premier showcase for high-growth technology companies that are seeking investment.
The participating companies were Bellrock Technology, Cognitive Geology, eoSurgical, Flavourly, Ice Robotics , IQX, Klik2learn, Mallzee, Speech Graphics, Sunamp and UWI Technology
EIE was an integral part of a visit to China organised by a partnership of Informatics Ventures, the Asia Scotland Institute, Scottish Enterprise, Scottish Development International (SDI), WeAreTheFuture and FutureX.
In addition to pitching for investment at the EIE events, the 11 Scottish technology companies gained valuable insight into the HK and mainland Chinese markets through meetings with key local support organisations and Scottish companies already active in the region.
The group visited the Blueprint Accelerator, part of the Swire Group. This B2B focused accelerator helps drive growth in business facing companies, while providing direct access to Swire Group companies, including Cathy Pacific and Coca Cola Asia.
This was followed by the Brinc IoT Accelerator which is dedicated to supporting companies building ‘Internet of Things’ products. Brinc invests in many of the companies in the accelerator and can support companies looking to manufacture, with strong links to Shenzhen and Greater China.
EIE Hong Kong was held on Tuesday 18th October, in a room filled with investors and key influencers, on the 30th floor of KPMG’s impressive headquarters. It kicked off with a keynote address from Lena Wilson, CEO of Scottish Enterprise, who emphasised the desire to drive business relationships between Scotland and China. She was followed by Charles Ng, Director General of Invest Hong Kong, who explained how they can support companies looking to setup a presence in Hong Kong.
The impressive and confident company pitches generated a lot of interest among the local investors in the audience, many of whom earlier in the day had also met with representatives from the Scottish investment community.
Having travelled north to Shenzhen, EIE Shenzhen took place on Thursday 20th at F815 Idea Land supported by the Shenzhen Creative Investment Group (SCIG). The companies were each assigned a Chinese ‘buddy’ to help with communication during the exhibition sessions.
The predominantly Chinese speaking audience of over 200 investors and business leaders were provided with company profiles translated into Chinese. The companies also had local language versions of their visual presentations. Delegates included representatives from Alibaba, Shenzhen Venture Capital Association, Tencent, Huawei and Baidu.
The conference was opened by Eleanor Mitchell, Head of High Growth Ventures at Scottish Enterprise, who spoke about the opportunities in Scotland. During the company pitching and Q & A sessions highly professional simultaneous interpretation was supplied.
Danny Helson, Programme Manager for Informatics Ventures, confirmed “Both EIE events were great successes, with the companies securing follow up meetings with investors and potential local partners. We aim to attract many of them to attend EIE17 in Edinburgh on 10th & 11th May next year.”
Pete Higgins founder and CEO of UWI Technology, commented “The reaction has been amazing. Our goal was to find customers, development partners and potential investors, and we had interest from all three. We are now following up with the contacts made.”