Hong Kong offers plenty of resources for those who want to start a venture. Its unique status as an international city and financial centre allows entrepreneurs to unleash their talent and expand their business into other parts of Asia as well as the rest of the world. Even if you are low on your start up funds, there are plenty of ways to raise your start up money through business start up loans and business funding schemes.
Lendela has curated a list of the best business start up loans and funding schemes in Hong Kong to help you save time and focus on more important matters. We have included business start up funds from the government, non-profit organisations, as well as financial institutions and banks, so you can compare them easily and find the best start up business funding to apply for.
Government Funding Schemes
Cyberport Creative Micro Fund
The Cyberport Creative Micro Fund provides financial assistance to digital tech projects and early-stage startups. If your start up business is tech-related and your team is aged between 18-30, you may apply for a HK$100,000 grant to support your project over a 6-month period. This business start up fund has three intakes per year, and grantees will be selected by an independent vetting team in a three-stage process. Learn more about this start up business funding here.
Cyberport Incubation Programme
The Cyberport Incubation Programme is also a great source of start up business funding for digital and tech-related businesses and entrepreneurs looking for start up money. Successful applicants can receive up to HK$500,000 of support over 25 months. They will also get access to a wide range of attractive resources such as rent-free working space at the Cyberport and free use of Cyberport shared meeting rooms and other facilities.
This start up business funding accepts applications year-round with three intake periods. Applicants who have previously completed the Cyberport Creative Micro Fund will be prioritised during the application process of this programme.
HKSTP IDEATION Programme
Through the HKSTP IDEATION Programme, individual entrepreneurs, start up teams, and companies (registered for no more than 2 years) can apply for a HK$100,000 grant to support their start up project. This start up business funding has fewer requirements on the applicant’s age and industry. It requires applicants to submit a one-year business plan and complete 10 designated training sessions during the one-year programme. The funding will then be released in 3 tranches according to the progress of the business plan.
Aside from the designated training courses, successful applicants of this start up business funding can also gain access to various essential services provided by the HKSTP and its partners. They will also have access to the HKSTP startup community’s meet-ups and networking events.
HKSTP INCUBATION Programme
Start up businesses (registered for no more than 5 years in Hong Kong) and entrepreneurs who specialise in technological application, deep tech, or biotechnology can apply for a start up fund of up to HK$1.29 million.
HKDC Design Incubation Programme (DIP)
This start up business funding supports designers working in various fields including fashion, branding, product design and packaging, interior design and architecture, visual and spatial art, jewellery design, media and communication, and other disciplines over a 2-year period.
Successful applicants can receive start up funds of up to HK$520,000, including up to HK$240,000 worth of subsidised office space, and up to HK$260,000 worth of financial support for operational, marketing, and development costs. This start up business funding is only available for businesses that are registered for no more than 3 years in Hong Kong.
NPO Business Start Up Loans
YBHK Youth Business Hong Kong
Hong Kong permanent residents aged between 18 and 35 can apply for an interest-free business start up loan of up to HK$150,000. This start up business loan is open for applications all year round with 4 separate periods of intake. Aside from their business start up loan, YBHK also provides successful applicants with business mentorship, professional consultancy service, and access to local business networks.
However, this interest-free start up business loan requires the applicants to submit a credit report obtained from the TransUnion Limited within 3 months. The applicant’s credit rating will be considered during the vetting process.
Other Business Start Up Loans
Local financial institutions and banks in Hong Kong offer all kinds of start up business loans with varying limits and requirements. Unlike some of the start up business fundings listed above, these start up business loans are not necessarily intended for young entrepreneurs and can be applied by anyone over the age of 18.
Most government and NPO business funds employ a vetting process formatted like a contest. Applicants will face fierce competition from other start up businesses and their applications are not always successful, despite tremendous efforts. Start up business loans from banks and financial institutions, however, have much simpler application processes and fewer requirements. Applicants with a good credit rating can usually receive their start up money without much difficulty.
In addition, there are also various business start up loans on the market that have no credit score requirements. However, you should always consider the credibility and potential risks involved with these start up loans and the reputation of their providers before applying.
Are you looking for start up money or need a business start up loan to incubate your million-dollar ideas? Lendela can help you search, compare, and apply for the best personal and business loans in Hong Kong. Start your business journey now!