Software park beckons start-ups
In the next five years, the Shanghai Pudong Software Park (SPSP) will provide a minimum of 300 million yuan ($48.4 million) to support business start-ups, part of the city’s goal of building a global technological innovation center.
According to an action plan released last week, the Park will create a new development mode in multiple dimensions.
The five-year action plan calls to build a unique space for start-ups, establish a good environment for new businesses, and develop new industry chains and valueadded chains for software and information services.
“Such goals are in line with the city’s ambition of building a global technological innovation center,” said Zhang Sulong, general manager of Shanghai Pudong Software Park Co Ltd.
The park aims to take a leading role in supporting technological innovation and business start-ups across the nation, he added.
“It plans to nurture more than 10 national or regional leaders in creative technologies and form an enterprise cluster of more than 1,000 companies with a total output value in excess of 100 billion yuan,” said Hu Ping, general manager of the SPSP Venture Capital Management Co Ltd.
The park will also establish over 50 funds to promote its enterprises and raise more than 10 billion yuan, Hu added,
In order to realize these goals, it will raise more than 30 million yuan in angel funds for start-ups created in the first year, and more than 200 million yuan in venture capital to aid enterprises established in the next two to five years.
Officially founded in March 2000, the SPSP is home to 600 information and communication technology (ICT) enterprises, with more than 40,000 specialist staff working there.
“About 60 percent of the companies here are smalland medium-sized, and we are dedicated to offering a prime place for business starters to grow and develop,” said Zhang.
Zhang Jun, CEO and cofounder of Shanghai PPDAI Financial Information Service Co Ltd, said he had failed three times to start a business before his team finally settled in the park at the end of 2010.
“We used to be a small start-up company without a proper office space, and now we have just finished the fourth round of financing. We have made great progress and our story shows just how important a good environment is for a start-up,” Zhang said.
Ray Tsang, who successfully sold his company IES Systems Ltd to Marvell Semiconductors in 2011, agreed.
“The park provides a good business ecology for startups,” he said, adding that he is mulling setting up a new venture there.
Born in Hong Kong and educated in Canada and the United States, Tsang said he was impressed by the entrepreneurship of Chinese people.
“All the successful stories of Chinese-listed companies have inspired a growing number of people to create their own businesses,” he said.
Apart from the start-ups, there are nearly 100 wellknown software enterprises in the park including Germany’s SAP, Citicorp Software from the United States and TATA from India, as well as domestic companies like Augmentum, and Hisoft.