SuperCharger Accelerator Aims To Help Fintech Startups And Established Companies Expand In Asiaby Fintechnews Singapore December 11, 2015
Standard Chartered, Baidu and co-working space operator Tuspark Global Network (TGN) have teamed up to launch SuperCharger, an 12-week accelerator program dedicated to fintech startups and established global companies looking to expand in Asia.
Based in Hong Kong, SuperCharger seeks to leverage Asia’s finance and technology gateway to assist fintech companies with building, mentorship and advice in market entry, regulatory requirements and joint venture opportunities.
“Hong Kong’s vibrant international financial ecosystem as well as strategic location as a gateway to China, one of the world’s largest FinTech market opportunities, makes it the perfect place to co-create the future of financial services with technopreneurs at the intersection of finance and technology,” said Ericson Chan, Standard Chartered’s Regional Chief Information Officer, Greater China and North Asia.
Alongside its founding sponsors, SuperCharger is also supported by Microsoft, Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing Limited (HKEx), EY, Invest HK, HKT, Ynext and Fintech Hong Kong.
Ynext will provide participants with access to Yodlee Interactive’s API sets, along with 1,000 free users each. Baidu, China’s leading Internet search engine, will make available its API platform to connect fintech providers and developers. TGN, originated from Tsinghua University, will bring over 20 years of expertise in operating technology parks and accelerator programs.
SuperCharger’s first round will kick off on January 11, 2016 at TGN’s dedicated fintech innovation hub in Hong Kong and will end on April 8, 2016 with a demo day.
Within the first three weeks of the program, participants will be exposed to the Asian Financial Forum and the Invest HK Startme-Up week, two events organized by the government of Hong Kong. The teams will have the opportunity to get plugged into the global ecosystem and engage with world-class decision makers.
Throughout the 12-week program, the participants will have access to 200+ VCs and mentors, US$40 million in off-shore investment capacity through Tus Holdings and a 50,000 sq. ft. working space in Hong Kong.
A global fintech hub
The initiative marks a new milestone in Hong Kong’s efforts to become a leading fintech hub.
Being one of the world’s leading financial centers and a major information and communications technology hub, Hong Kong is well placed to become a major fintech player, according to Hong Kong’s Financial Secretary John Tsang.
Speaking at the 2015 Fintech Innovation Lab Asia Pacific, Investor Day at Cyberport, Tsang said:
“With the ingenuity of our start-ups and with the concerted efforts of the Hong Kong Government, as well as industry and academia, I’m quite confident that Hong Kong will find its place as Asia’s FinTech capital, and one of the world’s leading FinTech centres.”
However, a crucial step will be to adjust the city’s regulatory framework to give greater clarity to businesses and to update rules to bring them into line with new business models and practices while continuing to offer strong investor and consumer protection.
Hence, in March, the government established a fintech steering group to advise and propose appropriate measures to reach that goal.
In October, Hong Kong’s Secretary for Financial Services and the Treasury Chan Ka-keung announced that the committee has been working on a policy blueprint “to promote fintech in Hong Kong, especially to address any potential and existing gaps.” Chan hopes the blueprint will be released in the near future, he said.
Speaking at the Thomson Reuters Pan-Asian Regulatory Summit, Chan said:
“Start-ups bring about novel ideas in delivering financial services. When striking the right balance between protecting consumers and promoting innovation, we have to acknowledge that some of the small fintech start-ups may not have the same resources to deal with regulatory and compliance matters compared with established financial institutions.”
Image credit: Hong Kong, Wikipedia.