21 October 2016
About 100 start-ups have set up offices in Qianhai's E Hub, about half of them from Hong Kong. Photo: HKEJ
About 100 start-ups have set up offices in Qianhai's E Hub, about half of them from Hong Kong. Photo: HKEJ

What exactly is attracting HK entrepreneurs to Qianhai?

Qianhai is being touted as an ideal place for Hong Kong entrepreneurs to develop their businesses for good reason — it’s geographically convenient and steeped in incentives.

E Hub, a Qianhai government-led start-up incubator, is the brainchild of the Authority of Qianhai Shenzhen-Hong Kong Modern Service Industry Cooperation Zone, the Shenzhen Youth Federation and the Hong Kong Federation of Youth Groups.

E Hub provides resources for as many as 200 start-ups.

About 100 such enterprises have set up offices in the area, about half of them from Hong Kong.

With E Hub, start-ups do not have to pay rent during the first year and they get a 50 percent discount in the second year.

Young companies that have shown extraordinary progress are eligible for a 2 million yuan (US$320,000) subsidy from the Shenzhen government.

The Qianhai Shenzhen authorites are determined to create one of the best start-up incubators in China.

Apart from attractive rental packages, start-ups inside E Hub enjoy tax benefits.

Consultancy services are available, helping Hong Kong start-ups deal with issues relating to accounting, law, human resources and funding.

These are common problems most foreigners find challenging.

Felix Chung is the founder of Hong Kong resources management company EcoSage. It is engaged in the recycling, recovery and refinery business.

EcoSage has an office in E Hub.

Chung tells the Hong Kong Economic Journal he wanted to set up a new business in China a few years ago but the idea was dead in the water.

He was worried about the fact that the legal systems in Hong Hong and mainland China are different.

But Chung changed his mind this year after learning E Hub can help him deal with these issues with its consultancy service.

“Don’t ever think that it is easy to set up a company in mainland China,” he says, adding unexpected problems are likely to arise.

Chung has invested 1 million yuan in a new business venture — drone rescue.

In Hong Kong, no one is willing to give it a try, he says.

“There aren’t enough talent in Hong Kong but drone experts from all over the country are now in Qianhai.”

Also, Chung says he can hire three programmers in Hong Kong but five in Qianhai for the same amount of money.

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