Chinachem Group recognised in Property Technology - Smart City category at HKB Technology Excellence Awards 2021
The group propels small-scale start-ups to become innovators of the future.
Chinachem Group, a leading property developer in Hong Kong, has been recognised in the HKB Technology Excellence Awards 2021 in the Property Technology - Smart City category. The Group received the award for its successful ventures in partnering with various start-ups and using technological innovations for the betterment of the city.
The group’s business philosophy is to bring positive change to the community and create shared value through its Triple Bottom Line approach, which puts an equal priority on creating benefits for People, Prosperity, and Planet. By embracing new ways to work through organisational change and digital transformation, it hopes to make Hong Kong a more liveable and more sustainable city.
The group’s investments in digital technology are also opening up the opportunity to help Hong Kong strengthen its competitive edge in regional and international markets. In particular, it is channelling significant resources into accelerating the development of ‘proptech’ to enhance the way people live and work. The group says its long-term goal is to take a leadership role in the industry and be the driver of change itself.
“We are adopting a three-stage process: Collaborate – Adopt – Invest,” explains Damien Wu, the group’s Director of Business Transformation and Innovation. “In other words, we establish partnerships with innovators to develop new technologies, test the resulting products in real-life situations, and then if proven successful, we invest in these start-ups to help them scale up.”
Chinachem Group Executive Director and CEO Donald Choi (7th from right), Hong Kong Science and Technology Parks Corporation CEO Albert Wong (7th from left), Chinachem Group Director of Business Transformation and Innovation Damien Wu (6th from right) and Hong Kong Science and Technology Parks Corporation Chief Corporate Development Officer Eugene Hsia (6th from left) welcomed the representatives from the 10 selected tech ventures.
One significant collaboration involving the group is the CCG Accel – Powered by HKSTP programme launched in March 2021 in partnership with Hong Kong Science & Technology Parks Corporation. The programme’s goal is to catapult start-ups with high potential through a process that shortens the critical gap between the pilot stage and mass adoption. The programme will cover three themed accelerator cohorts, each providing the necessary training, mentorship and industry support for up to 10 start-ups. The group will help these start-ups conduct their trial stages at Chinachem Group properties ahead of general adoption.
Further demonstrating its support for innovative start-ups, Chinachem Group has recently launched the Inno Place@CCG programme, based on a Living Lab concept. The idea of this programme is to break away from the practice of conducting trials in a traditional innovation lab where testing is restricted by the physical lab space itself and proceed head-on with real-world trials.
“This programme will see the group open up its properties as innovation places where selected innovations can be trialled in a real-world environment,” Wu notes. “It will allow the start-ups to pilot and refine their solutions, whilst users can immediately benefit from them.”
Chinachem Group was also the first property developer in the industry to forge a collaboration with Smart City Consortium (SCC), a move designed to propel smart city development in Hong Kong as a precursor to the adoption of Internet of Things (IoT) technologies in the city’s commercial and residential property sectors. Together, Chinachem Group and SCC are developing a set of smart city guidelines that will establish standards and best practices for deploying and maintaining IoT devices in smart buildings, especially in the crucial area of cybersecurity.
10 selected tech ventures will test and develop proptech-related solutions that address challenges in the areas of visitor experience, environment and sustainability, as well as operation and facility management at the revitalised Central Market. (From left) Negawatt Utility Limited CEO and Co-founder Arthur Lam, APICEM Technology Services Company Limited (ATS) CTO Michael Kan, Optical Sensing Limited CEO Matthew Lam, I2Cool Limited Co-founder Martin Zhu, RV Automation Technology Company Limited Marketing Manager Paris Cheng, Rice Robotics Limited Head of Product and Technology Sophiya Chiang, Dayta AI Limited CTO & Co-founder Eugene Ho, Dayta AI Limited CEO & Co-founder Patrick Tu, Megasoft Limited COO CY Choi, Tech Hill Limited CTO Mok Wai Pong, Novelte Robotics Limited Co-founder and CMO Albert Lam.
As regards the third leg of its Collaborate – Adopt – Invest approach, the group has joined forces with China Merchants Capital and Qingdao City Construction Investment (Group) Limited to establish the CC Smart City Tech Fund I, the first of its kind, with an initial capital of US$100m. It has also invested in the smart logistics platform, Zeek.
Besides supporting these technological advances, the group is committed to ensuring a cleaner and safer urban environment for local residents. It is the first Hong Kong developer to introduce Enertainer, a portable battery storage system, to replace the use of traditional diesel generators, thereby reducing both carbon emissions and noise pollution. The group is also planning to adopt Modular Integrated Construction (MIC) for one of its upcoming residential developments, an initiative that will not only increase efficiency but also speed up construction time, a critical issue in light of the city’s acute housing shortage.
In a number of startups, including zeek, a smart logistic platform, the Group will continue to look for investment opportunities in promising startups in the smart city area.