Connecting emerging Cambridge companies with Chinese investors


As Cambridge experiences unprecedented interest in UK|China investments and business deals, Cambridge China Centre is curating an exclusive pitch event on the 21st March with the aim of connecting Chinese investors with emerging and innovative Cambridge and UK-based businesses. This event directly follows the 29th Annual Business Weekly Awards where Cambridge China Centre will be a judge and presenter of the UK|China Business Award, the first ever in the Business Weekly Awards history.

Situating the relevance of this opportunity in context, it is important to consider that the Chinese economy has been growing at an astonishing rate since the ‘Reform and Opening Up’, averaging approximately a 10% annual growth in Gross Domestic Product in that time. Investments in the UK from China more than doubled between 2016 and 2017 (from $9.2 billion to $20.8 billion USD) and there has been a consistent stream of investments, both inward and outward, between China and the UK. The UK saw growth of 1.5% in 2018, whilst China saw 6.6% growth in 2018 and has projected a target of 6.5% for the end of 2019.

Although this has frequently been reported as a slow-down in the Chinese economy, it can be better understood by considering (a) the scale and (b) the rebalancing strategy. Today’s ‘slow down’ actually reflects a bigger impact on global GDP than in previous years. A decade ago, China’s GDP was growing at 12.7% representing an annual increase of $300 billion (USD).  Last year’s ‘slow down’ to 6.8% actually represented an enormous annual increase of $961 billion (USD); over three times larger than in the previous decade. A second view of ‘slow down’ is that the current Chinese economy is beginning to shift according to the Chinese government’s plan for a New Normal; a rebalancing of the economy from export-led growth towards higher-quality growth. Since inexpensive labour-intensive products for export are generally more susceptible to stress and shocks in global demand, the shift towards higher-quality growth such as the innovative technology, mechanisation plus greater reliance on domestic demand and services aims to ensure greater GDP stability in the long term. Although there are challenges ahead, particularly in the export sectors, there are real growth opportunities for Cambridge businesses with innovated products or ideas to offer the emerging ‘higher-quality’ Chinese economy.

Meeting the unprecedented interest in UK|China investment opportunities and the stable growth that they represent, Cambridge China Centre will be hosting the pitch-event to Chinese investors with emerging and innovative Cambridge and UK-based businesses. The exclusive event will be held at the Bradfield Centre on the 21st March and give emerging innovative Cambridge and UK companies the opportunity to have one-to-one meetings and pitch their ideas to a carefully-selected group Chinese investors. The Chinese investors are particularly interested in talking to emerging BioTech, IoT, AI and AgriTech companies. The Cambridge China Centre would like to hear from Cambridge & UK-based Seed+ to Pre-A round technology companies interested in the exclusive opportunity to pitch their businesses to Chinese Investors.

Chinese investors attending the pitch event on the 21st March include:

  • TusPark UK – the UK branch of TusPark, the largest innovation ecosystem worldwide (owning over 200 incubators/science parks/science cities), and one of the most successful science and technology investors in China. TusPark UK has presences in Cambridge and Newcastle, offering office/wet lab space and leading Accelerator Programmes that include a range of funding and financial services, incubation, as well as expertise with positioning UK start-ups for entry into the China market.
  • Huajin Capital – the investment arm of Zhuhai Huafa group, the largest comprehensive enterprise group in Zhuhai and one of the top 500 Chinese companies and the top 500 Chinese service companies. Huafa Group currently holds four listed companies including Huafa Share, Huajin Capital, Huajin International Capital and Huaguan Technology. Huafa Capital is voted by Zero2IPO as one of “China’s Top 50 PE Firms” in 2017 & 2018.
  • Puhua Capital – one of the most successful venture capital investment firms in China that focuses on the early and growing Healthcare, Technology and pan-culture companies across China, Europe and the US. Puhua Capital is headquartered in Hangzhou, Zhejiang with offices in Beijing, Shanghai, Shenzhen, London and Berlin. During the past 15 years, Puhua Capital has invested in over 400 excellent start-ups, with over 17 billion RMB assets under management worldwide.
  • The UK China Enterprise Fund – a Chinese-capital-backed VC fund managed by ET Capital, the Cambridge based VC. Focusing on spin-outs from top-tier universities or startups in the UK and exploiting Chinese capital, markets and manufacturing capacities, the Fund focuses on new materials, clean tech, AI, semiconductors, automotive and aviation industries.  The Fund aims for growth in the UK and China to drive strong returns for investors.  A parallel China-based fund focuses on Chinese subsidiaries or JVs at growth stage.
  • The Sino-UK Fund – the Sino-UK Fund is a new equity investment fund set up to finance market entry and development for UK companies seeking to access the China market. The Sino-UK Fund focuses on medtech, biotech, cleantech and agritech.
  • Hangzhou Oxbridge Asset Management – Provides advisory and discretionary investment management services within China and the UK.

To apply for a place at the pitch session, please fill in the Registration Form and send to enquiry@cambridgechinacentre.org by Friday the 15th March 2019.

With thanks to our event hosts