The third edition of InnovFest Suzhou, organised by National University of Singapore (Suzhou) Research Institute (NUSRI), Singapore-China (Suzhou) Innovation Centre and NUS Enterprise, took place at NUSRI from 6 to 7 June. Dr Lily Chan, CEO of NUS Enterprise, gave an opening keynote address, speaking on technology innovation and the entrepreneurship ecosystem in Singapore. Other guests included Mr Loh Tuck Wai, Consul General of the Consulate-General of the Republic of Singapore in Shanghai; Mr Zhou Xu Dong, Deputy Secretary of the Suzhou Industrial Park (SIP) Party Working Committee; as well as Ms Ji Jing, Deputy Director of the SIP Administrative Committee.
In her keynote, Dr Chan said that InnovFest was part of the University's consistent efforts in helping Singapore start-ups and technologies in their first steps to venture into and initiate collaboration within China. Highlighting the efforts in China, she said, “Through BLOCK71 Suzhou, we extend the Singapore tech entrepreneurship ecosystem beyond Singapore's shores; at the same time opening doors to China tech companies to access our Singapore entrepreneurial ecosystem to reach out to markets in Southeast Asia and beyond.”
The two-day event saw more than 800 visitors viewing over 100 projects from countries ranging from Germany, Israel and Japan to Singapore, the UK and the US. The projects focused on areas such as biomedical devices, intelligent manufacturing and hardware, new energy, environmental protection, water-related technology, digital new media, among others. Delegates thronged the four parallel sessions, closed-door pitching, 80 roadshows, 60 meetings and 50 exhibition booths featuring a wide variety of start-up projects.
More than 10 renowned universities — Beijing University, Oxford University, Shanghai Jiaotong University and The Hong Kong Polytechnic University — participated in the event, as well as multinational companies such as Bosch, Flex, Johnson & Johnson and Samsung.
"Through BLOCK71 Suzhou, we extend the Singapore tech entrepreneurship ecosystem beyond Singapore's shores; at the same time opening doors to China tech companies to access our Singapore entrepreneurial ecosystem to reach out to markets in Southeast Asia and beyond."
— Dr Lily Chan
At the event, NUS Enterprise, NUSRI and Ascendas-Singbridge inked a Memorandum of Understanding to introduce an international advanced incubation mode into Suzhou and engineer Suzhou's entrepreneur ecosystem.
NUSRI also hopes to evaluate projects and provide business consulting to expedite the process of setting up international high-tech innovation projects in Suzhou.
Held annually, InnovFest Suzhou is a platform to showcase the leading technologies and enterprises in China, Singapore as well as other countries; facilitate the exchange of knowledge; and promote technology licensing and business collaborations and market opportunities in China.