Cyberport landlord to put HK$100m into renewing Asian hub strategy

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 16 December, 2010, 12:00am
UPDATED : Thursday, 16 December, 2010, 12:00am

Hong Kong Cyberport Management, the landlord for the government-backed flagship hi-tech facility in Pok Fu Lam, will spend HK$100 million in the next three years as it renews the city's bid to become an information and communications technology hub in Asia-Pacific.

Paul Chow Man-yiu, the company's chairman, said the plan signified a new era of investment for Cyberport, which has steadily become profitable more than a decade after it was first established.

'We've graduated from the property development stage,' said Chow, formerly the chief executive of Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing. 'Part of this profit should be returned to society by accomplishing our corporate mission.'

The Cyberport development is on a 24-hectare site at Telegraph Bay in the southern district of Hong Kong.

It was established in 1999 and completed in 2007 at a cost of HK$15.8 billion.

Cyberport Management is one of three private and wholly owned firms set up by the government to develop, operate and manage the facility. It includes four grade-A intelligent office buildings, a five-star hotel, a retail entertainment complex and about 2,800 deluxe residences.

In the 2008/09 financial year, the operating revenue of the Cyberport companies totalled HK$361 million, up from HK$319 million the previous year, with profit excluding depreciation of about HK$96 million.

Cyberport Management chief executive Herman Lam Heung-yeung said 40 per cent of the investment would go to boost resources for entrepreneurship programmes, such as its Incubation Centre and Cyberport Creative Micro Funds. So-called knowledge programmes, such as training and seminars, will get 30 per cent, while collaboration and technology programmes will receive 15 per cent each.

The Cyberport strategy calls for closer co-operation with the Hong Kong Science and Technology Parks Corp and various industry organisations, especially in promotions on the mainland and overseas markets.

These alliances are also expected to help narrow the 'digital divide' - the disparity between the information-technology rich and poor, according to Chow. 'We shall focus on collaborations instead of doing everything by ourselves,' he said.