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ShineWing Hong Kong senior advisor on the valuable role of entrepreneurs

David Chu was one of the judges at the recently concluded Made in Hong Kong and Designed in Hong Kong Awards 2020.

David Chu, senior advisor at ShineWing Hong Kong has over 40 years of professional accounting and advisory experience gained across Asia Pacific, including Hong Kong, Mainland China and Australia.

He specialises in international businesses, covering business strategy and structuring, sourcing of strategic partners, tax compliance, and transaction advisory services including mergers & acquisitions. David also works across a range of industry sectors including food & agribusiness, energy & resources, and property.

“Entrepreneurs in Hong Kong are known for their resilience, agility and adaptability. The valuable role entrepreneurs can play is critical to a prompt response to the changing market conditions,” he said during an interview with Hong Kong Business.

As one of the judges at the recently concluded Made in Hong Kong and Designed in Hong Kong Awards 2020, HKB chatted with David as he shared his thoughts on where the opportunities are for entrepreneurs and where investors should focus amidst these trying times.

Which particular markets or sectors are your main focus? Can you share with us your work experience or any backstory that has contributed to your professional career?
My business focus is international businesses, especially in the agribusiness, property, education, renewable energy, and manufacturing sectors.

My professional experience in Australia, Hong Kong, and China over the last 40 years have been involved in international business strategies, as well as international business and tax structuring. I am attuned to the international business Asian listed company market, corporate regulations and various stock exchange requirements.

China presents a huge marketplace. Australia is known for its innovations and creativity. Hong Kong, as a super-connector, serves as a hub for strategic collaborations between Hong Kong and Australian businesses to ‘springboard’ into Asia, and in particular Mainland China. Lately, the Greater Bay Area in Southern China is a market that offers substantial opportunities.

The most rewarding projects, in the biotechnology and water treatment sectors, that I have worked on typically involved collaboration between Hong Kong investors and Australian technology companies, and eventuated in products being manufactured, as well as marketed, in Mainland China.

Which industries are staying resilient in these trying times? Where should the investors put their money to better position themselves in the market?
The pandemic would change the way people work, interact and learn. Whilst it is recognised that a high level of uncertainty, volatility, complexity and ambiguity would persist post-pandemic, businesses have to be proactive and creative in dealing with the unprecedented challenges.

Whilst a lot of businesses struggled during the pandemic, some industry sectors have been observed to be more resilient and, in some cases, thrived. Technology, Online marketing, Mass media, Entertainment, and Consumer Goods are some of the more successful examples, as a consequence of their creative mindset.

For investors, focus will be on businesses whose management are positive, agile and prepared to overcome the challenges. They create and innovate even during the most demanding times.

The low interest rate and subdue inflation environment might be conducive to improve the investment sentiment. It is contemplated that technologies (such as artificial intelligence, fintech, agritech, and proptech) that contribute to reduction of contact, supply of clean energy, and waste reduction will be the focus of investors.

Where are the opportunities for entrepreneurs in Hong Kong in the middle and post-pandemic era?
Despite the disruption caused by the pandemic, Hong Kong government continues to advocate a journey in becoming a dynamic and vibrant start-up location. The drivers continue to rest with the entrepreneurs.

Whilst the on-going pandemic situation has accelerated the use of digital technologies with business and consumers, the surge of digital transformation has been a key tool to create business opportunities for entrepreneurs and corporates in the current environment. The agility and responsiveness of Hong Kong start-ups amidst the pandemic crisis, coupled with their advanced and innovative technologies, have allowed them to seize business opportunities whilst at the same time bring a positive contribution to the Hong Kong market. Due to the online consumers' behavioral shifts, start-ups’ agility in the current business climate has been a good catalyst for leveraging the development of new digital capabilities to generate profits. They could make innovative and purpose-driven responses to the market needs amidst the pandemic in Hong Kong.

What are your thoughts on the entries for this year’s Made in Hong Kong Awards and Designed in Hong Kong Awards?
It is impressive and delightful to have lots of innovative entries submitted by the candidates in this year’s Made in Hong Kong Awards and Designed in Hong Kong Awards. These entries have a broad coverage of innovative and practical products, which demonstrated great corporate social awareness of the entrepreneurs in Hong Kong.

Some of the innovative products are well-designed to address the challenges and difficulties brought by the pandemic. They are definitely good examples of how Hong Kong businesses persevere and stay resilient during challenging times. They also create shared value to the market in order to bring positive influence on people’s lives.

Even better, a number of the entries have adopted a sustainable and people-oriented concept, which highly addresses the needs of healthcare and environment, as well as promotes smart living with a blend of technology and convenience. It is inspiring and pleasant to have increasingly sustainable and people-oriented entries from Hong Kong businesses. They could help foster the development of innovation and technology amongst young entrepreneurs and start-ups in Hong Kong.

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