Most 100 startups based at Young Entrepreneur Incubation Centre already in business – Manager

Macau (MNA) – There are currently about 100 startup teams in the Macau Young Entrepreneur Incubation Centre, with about half being IT projects, the Executive Director of the public capital company responsible for the centre said on Wednesday.

“Most of them have already started their own companies within the first six months [of registering in the centre],” the Executive Director of Parafuturo de Macau Investment and Development Ltd., Carlos Lam Ka Vai, said today.

The Centre was first established by the Macau Economic Bureau (DSE) in 2015, but has been managed government-controlled Parafuturo de Macau Investment and Development Ltd. since October 2017.

“In the first six months we give them training, help them to start their own company, and then renew the contract with them […] We provide lawyers, accountants for our members to have free consultations,” the Parafuturo manager said.

Mr. Lam also stated that the centre has partnerships with more than 10 incubators in the Greater Bay Area, with the services provided by the centre shared with members from these incubators and vice-versa, if local teams want to expand in the region

After the first six months period the startups are evaluated, and contracts with the startups can be renewed for another half year with a new contract including an option that Parafuturo can take a five per cent share in the company.

“This is just an option, we don’t take the shares immediately. We can trade this option to a third party as well,” the Parafuturo Executive Director added.

Last year Parafuturo also established a partnership with Portuguese incubator Beta-i and is still promoting its services to its members.

MOP2 million in prizes for local startups

Mr. Lam made the comments after the incubation centre announced the 4th edition of its Innovation and Entrepreneurship Competition, which will start admitting candidates from today until early August, with the local contest to take place at this year’s Macau International Start-up Week in early September.

Last year’s edition saw 42 local teams took part – mostly IT projects – with Mr. Lam expecting more due to the large prize offered in this edition.

The competition is made in cooperation with the Qianhai Shenzhen-Hong Kong-Macau Youth Innovation and Entrepreneurship Competition, which will provide RMB1 million (MOP1.1 million/US$145,093) just to the Macau winner.

“Local entrepreneurs can submit any projects they think can attract angel investment or any project they think can impress judges […] They will analyse if the projects are feasible or if they can expand in a short period of time,” he added.

In total there about MOP2 million in prizes up for grabs to local startups, who if they win the local competition will then take part in the Qianhai Shenzhen-Hong Kong-Macau Youth Innovation and Entrepreneurship Competition in December, with teams from Mainland China, Hong Kong, and Taiwan.

“It is not just a contest, we have a whole year programme starting with classes from the Macau Productivity and Technology Transfer Centre (CPTTM). We bring students to the GBA to look at other large corporations and then we have the contest,” Mr. Lam added.

The contest is also sponsored by Education and Youth Affairs Bureau (DSEJ), Macau Trade and Investment Promotion Institute (IPIM), Macau Economic Bureau (DSE), plus Bank of China and Tai Fung Bank.