Microsoft to lead $1m bid to transform Hong Kong into IoT hub
Microsoft and Hong Kong Science & Technology Parks (HKSTP) have formed a partnership that will inject more than US$1m to transform Hong Kong into an IoT hub by providing IoT developers with support to enhance their product offerings.
The memorandum of understanding (MoU) between the companies includes the creation of an IoT innovation platform and a dedicated cloud-based data analytics environment at Hong Kong Science Park. IoT developers, including students, start-ups and traditional independent software vendors who want to expand their portfolios or add value through IoT, will receive proof of concept support, can consult experts for advice and attend training sessions. And they will be able to accelerate their development of IoT through cloud services and tools.
“Our collaboration with Microsoft Hong Kong to create the IoT innovation platform and data analytics environment at Hong Kong Science Park is a testament to Hong Kong’s unlimited potential as an internet of things hub,” said Allen Ma, HKSTP chief executive officer. “The city has attracted numerous IoT developers and many of them have chosen Hong Kong Science Park as their base of operations because of the unique collaborative and inspiring environment, as well as the full range of available technical and marketing services.”
There are 90 IoT companies in the science park working on IoT-related projects. Their work ranges from data security to IoT enabled ERP systems.
“These companies are agile and react quickly to rising trends with tailored solutions to meet changing customer needs,” said Ma. “The next few years will be key for Hong Kong’s development into an IoT hub, as we push developers to achieve even more, train the next generation of IoT specialists as well as nurture start-ups and young ICT companies. The technical infrastructure is already in place and Hong Kong’s high smartphone adoption and broadband penetration rates make big data readily available. We’re confident Hong Kong will become the location of choice for IoT solutions in the Asia-Pacific region and the world in the near future.”
Horace Chow, general manager of Microsoft Hong Kong, added: “It’s our pleasure to join forces with HKSTP to help Hong Kong become a central hub for IoT development in Asia. Microsoft Hong Kong and HKSTP have already been working together in areas such as nurturing start-ups, and this partnership is a natural extension of our existing collaboration. Microsoft Hong Kong’s investment in this MoU is closely aligned with our Spark HK initiative, which is aimed at empowering Hong Kong’s growth and competitiveness through innovation.”
HKSTP and Microsoft Hong Kong will jointly contribute resources and technical expertise under this MoU. This includes free Azure services through BizSpark for start-ups, an Azure IoT starter kit, training facilities, staff support and advisory services.
“The economic and social benefits that come with the development of the IoT industry in Hong Kong are numerous,” said Gary Sun, general manager of Microsoft Asia-Pacific. “With our IoT expertise, which is the best in the world, and our experience in helping mainland China customers to succeed in the IoT industry, we’re very excited to collaborate with HKSTP to re-energise traditional industries in Hong Kong and create big data job vacancies in the next five years. I’m confident this collaboration to create the IoT innovation platform will take the technology industry in Hong Kong to the next level.”