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HKSTP and HKEX Partner to Boost National Biotech and Fintech

Image Credits: HKSTP, Press Release

Hong Kong Science & Technology Parks Corporation (HKSTP) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing Limited (HKEX) to collaborate on initiatives to nurture more start-up successes and bolster Hong Kong’s rise as a global hub for world-class biotech and fintech ventures.

The partnership marks an important milestone in HKSTP’s strategy to bring together sector leaders in industry and academia to raise the collective strength of the Hong Kong I&T ecosystem. It aims to contribute to the development of Hong Kong as a world-class hub for investment, development and growth of high-potential local and global start-ups.

HKSTP will provide a team of biotech industry leaders and experts to assist in HKEX’s review of biotech listing applications. HKSTP’s expert advice will help maintain and reinforce HKEX’s robust standards of investor protection and solidify its leadership as the world’s number two biotech funding hub.

The HKSTP Chief Executive Officer stated that the Park firmly believes biotech and fintech to be core pillars for Hong Kong’s innovation-driven future and this exciting partnership with HKEX brings us even closer to realizing this vision. This is also a significant step forward in HKSTP’s goal to create the ideal investment platform and innovation ecosystem to support biotech ventures in their unique long-term growth challenge.

The HKEX Chief Executive Officer stated that the agency is delighted to be teaming up with HKSTP, a uniquely Hong Kong institution known for its innovation and expertise, to help drive the continued development of the city’s fast-growing biotech and new economy ecosystem.

HKEX looks forward to working together, collaborating to realise a shared commitment to the community, which is to help support the growth aspirations of the leading companies of tomorrow.

Biomedical Technology Consulting Services from HKSTP

Under the partnership, HKSTP will leverage its expertise in biomedical technology to provide consulting services and advice to HKEX on queries relating to listing applications.

HKSTP has made biomedical technology (BMT) a core focus of its innovation mission covering a broad spectrum of healthtech ventures covering medical devices, diagnostics, therapeutics and personal care, as well as regenerative and traditional Chinese medicine.

The HKSTP BMT cluster today features advanced infrastructure facilities such as its Biobank and Biomedical Informatics Platform, plus industry-leading incubation programs like the Incu-Bio and Clinical Translational Catalyst (CTC) programs. This provides a unique platform for bench-to-bedside biomedical technology development – a diverse and connected end-to-end support system from R&D, product development to commercialisation.

In addition to the close collaboration around biotech, the MOU also includes a commitment by the parties to study the feasibility of a financial data research platform for advanced data analysis and to explore other opportunities for cooperation.

Growing demand for biotech

The global biotechnology market size was valued at US$752.88 billion in 2020 and is expected to expand at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 15.83% from 2021 to 2028. The market is driven by favourable government initiatives owing to the growth of the biotechnology sector in developing countries, such as India and China.

Government initiatives are oriented towards modernizing the drug regulatory pathway, standardizing clinical studies, improving reimbursement policies, and speeding up the product approval process, thereby offering lucrative growth opportunities to the market.

In addition, in 2019, small molecules dominated the pharmaceutical compounds pipeline with around 22 U.S. FDA approvals as compared to eight large molecules (biotech). Around 4 out of every 10 drugs are biotech derived, which can be attributed to the growing demand for orphan drugs and personalised medicine. This is driving the influx of emerging and innovative biotechnologies companies, further boosting the market revenue.

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