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China Daily

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Saturday, July 13, 2019, 00:38
Leading young entrepreneurs gather in HK to exchange ideas
By Pamela Lin
Saturday, July 13, 2019, 00:38 By Pamela Lin

HONG KONG-Blessed with ample funding and a wide talent pool, entrepreneurship in the Asia-Pacific continues to thrive.

This was the message from young game-changers across the Asia-Pacific who spoke in Hong Kong on july 12 at the Forbes Under 30 Summit Asia. The three-day event, which ends on July 13, includes motivational panels, tech presentations, and the opportunity to network.

The Forbes 30 Under 30 Asia list this year included 61 entrepreneurs from the Chinese mainland and 11 from Hong Kong. Ten industries were included, and most of the mainland’s top young entrepreneurs  — 11 in all — were in the consumer technology sector.

The list features 300 CEOs, mentors and industry leaders under 30 years old across 10 categories in 23 countries and territories in the Asia-Pacific. Honorees are vetted by a panel of expert judges in their respective fields who consider leadership, innovation in their respective fields, entrepreneurial mindset and results, and the likelihood of changing their field over the next half-century.

Eric Gnock Fah, co-founder of Hong Kong travel-experience booking startup Klook Travel and an honoree of Forbes 30 Under 30 Asia in 2017, said the drivers of their success are Asia-based talent groups and investment from the Asia-Pacific region.

Fah said that half the Klook team is based in China, and the global research and development center is in Shenzhen, where China’s largest high-tech companies are located.

Based in Hong Kong, Fah sees a dominant tourism-market position here as key to further strengthening the Asia market while expanding the business to Europe and the US.

In April, Klook closed a US$225 million fundraising led by Vision Fund, and to date, the startup has raised US$425 million in a Series D funding round.

Also at the event, Chinese smartphone manufacturer OnePlus Technology, which launched the first commercial 5G handset in the UK early in May, displayed its 5G smartphone.

The handsets have become very popular outside China, especially in the US. In October, the smartphone manufacturer partnered with US carrier T-Mobile, further tapping into the market.

OnePlus co-founder Carl Pei Yu said it took some time for the public to leverage 4G data, and for OnePlus, it’s essential that it jump on the technology wave quickly.

OnePlus has held offline events overseas to further engage the customers. Pei said that in 2017, it gathered British customers who were unsatisfied with their phones to seek ideas for improving them.


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