On August 3rd, the first Spark Founders Summit will go live in Hong Kong and Singapore. Talks will focus on cultivating more startups and innovation in the region, as the conference connects APAC startup founders with policymakers, investors, unicorn founders, VC firms, and other companies to help them launch their ideas into the world.
What is the Spark Programme?
Huawei Spark is an APAC tech accelerator that supports AI, IoT, SaaS, edge computing, and 5G startups. It focuses on the e-commerce, fintech, energy, manufacturing, and smart city industries and looks for applications that bring something new to the market. Startup founders can select either Huawei’s incubator programme—financial, technical, and training support—for seed to early-stage startups or its accelerator programme—Go-To-Market (GTM) support, mentoring, and networking—for early- to late-stage startups.
So far, Huawei Spark has worked with 40+ startups based in Singapore, Hong Kong, Thailand, and Malaysia. The company will soon roll its programme out to Indonesia, Sri Lanka, the Philippines, and Vietnam. ‘Tapping on Huawei’s rich experience and technological capabilities, the Spark Programme empowers startups to contribute to local communities’, said Leo Jiang, Chief Digital Officer at Huawei Cloud Asia Pacific. ‘And that helps bridge a digital and social divide’.
How Does It Affect APAC?
Even as Asia’s global trade output decreases due to supply chain delays, its startup economy is valued at US$3tn—30% of the global startup economy. According to Huawei, startups have a larger societal role to play: they help level the playing field in a region ripped apart by economic disparity. ‘Startups, particularly high-growth ones, can drive economic recovery’, said Jiang.
He added that the Spark-supported startups will help transform APAC’s economy from labour-based to more intellectual, knowledge-based industries, helping Asian-Pacific businesses take the digital lead. ‘We work with government agencies to groom ICT talent and raise overall digital literacy’, said Jiang. The result? ‘Instead of being home to a few countries that enjoy tech dominance, APAC as a whole can emerge as a stronger region’.