Prime Minister of Portugal to Speak at Inaugural StartUP Macau Forum

    Portugal's Prime minister Antonio Costa to also meet with shortlisted young entrepreneurs from Portugal, Macau and Mainland China at entrepreneurial competition

    Macau Startup and Innovation Center to open in 2017

    MACAU, Oct. 7, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Next week on 10/11 October, Macau will become the center of a unique entrepreneurial competition and conference that will draw participants from Portugal, mainland China and Macau SAR together in a city that has served as the economic bridge between Portuguese-speaking countries, Europe and China for more than 500 years. The Prime Minister of Portugal Antonio Costa will deliver the keynote speech at the StartUP Macau Forum event and meet with young entrepreneurs.

    The two-day event is designed to bring together investors and entrepreneurs alike and create a marketplace of ideas that fosters innovation and new business opportunities through workshops, an exciting juried-panel competition for entrepreneurs, presentations, and panel discussions with business leaders.

    The conference is being organized by the Macau China ThinkTank for Fintech Industries, with the support of the Portuguese government, as well as the investment and economic promotion agencies of the Portuguese and Macau governments. The conference was conceptualized and led by CESL Asia - Investments & Services, Limited, a Macau-based services company, Portugal-based Fabrica de Startups and Tsinghua University.

    From the early stages of planning, the potential for such an event was clear, and the Governments of Portugal and Macau SAR both agreed to participate and sponsor the event -- in cooperation with groups like Macau Trade and Investment Promotion Institute (IPIM), Industrial and Commercial Development Fund, Macau Productivity and Technology Transfer Center (CPTTM), Turismo de Portugal, Aicep Portugal Global - Trade & Investment Agency (AICEP), Consulate General of Hong Kong & Macau, as well as China Association for Science and Technology (CAST).

    Asia Times is the media partner for StartUP Macau Forum.

    "This event puts Macau on the map as a place for new and exciting business opportunities and the platform of this competition demonstrates how China and Portuguese-speaking countries are coming together in Macau, working side by side and producing innovative business solutions," said Dr. Eric Yeung, Chairman of the Macau China ThinkTank for Fintech Industries.

    Using Fabrica de Startups' proven methodology for similar events that the company has organized around the world, about 40 startups were carefully selected for the competition from among a pool of potential participants. The selection process was based on criteria such as the participants identifying existing and significant business problems, considering variables of solutions being offered, scalability of those solutions, the competency and motivation of the team, the regional focus and target markets involved and the relative capital requirements to implement solutions.

    Antonio Lucena de Faria, founder and CEO of Fabrica de Startups said: "We have helped more than 1,500 startups leverage their products and services since 2011 with our FastStart and FastGrowth methodologies, and we see this event as a timely opportunity to show the shortlisted 19 startups just how the right help and support can shorten the distance towards success. Fabrica is also committed to help startups from China and other parts of Asia expand their activities to Portuguese-speaking countries and vice-versa, supporting startups in their pursuit of new markets and helping them with our methodologies in order to decrease the failure ratio. In the process, they have the tools to search for the right market answers before hitting the markets."

    Additional incentives for the three winning teams will be in the form of a cash prize totaling USD20,000 and tickets for Web Summit Lisboa 2016, as well as cash allowances for transportation and living costs. Cash prizes were made possible through the contribution and support of Asia Times, MGM Macau and Galaxy Entertainment Group. Turismo de Portugal is offering the opportunity for the awarded teams to be in Lisboa for the Web Summit, between 7 and 12 November.

    This sort of educational and mentoring event for entrepreneurs is also intended to serve as a catalyst for establishing the Macau Startup and Innovation Center, which will serve as an offshore base for Portuguese and Chinese startups. Scheduled to open next year, the center will provide a platform to gather regional efforts and foster dialogue, networking, education and opportunities for emerging entrepreneurs.

    "Macau is a vibrant city with an exceptional workforce, progressive and developing universities, a high-standard of living, low taxes and a business-friendly environment. And we are geographically well-positioned and culturally linked between the world's largest market -- China  -- Europe and the Portuguese speaking Countries of the world," said Antonio Trindade, President and CEO of CESL Asia - Investments & Services, Limited and an organizer of the event.

    Mr Trindade added: "The governments of Portugal, China and Macau SAR are committed to this effort and we see a mandate to diversify and grow our economy, encouraging young people to pursue their entrepreneurial goals, and making the most of what Macau can offer."

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    Social Media:  #StartUPMacau