China’s Dongguan Business Incubator for Returned Overseas Personnel: Fertile Soil for Innovation and Career Building

The Dongguan incubator brings Chinese postgrads returning from studies abroad in close contact with the industry and closer to success on their home turf

DONGGUAN, China, December 30, 2014 /PRNewswire/ — Dongguan is a prefecture-level city in China’s Guangdong province and one of "the four tigers of Guangdong." The city is situated on the east bank of the Pearl River estuary, with the large population centers of Shenzhen to the south, Guangzhou to the west and Huizhou to the north and east, and ten county-level boroughs in close proximity. The beautiful and serene Songshan Lake National High Tech Development Zone, located at the geographic center of the prosperous manufacturing city, has huge development potential. Songshan Lake lies in the heartland of the well-known GuangzhouShenzhenHong Kong economic corridor, with three economic powerhouses of Guangzhou, Shenzhen and Hong Kong as well as most locations within the Pearl River Delta lying within one hour of travel from the city by car. Dongguan will rely on this "trump card" to attract talented individuals from both China and abroad to unleash their innovative energies and start businesses in the city through reliance on the China Dongguan Business Incubator for Returned Overseas Personnel.

The Business Incubator for Returned Overseas Personnel in Dongguan, located in Songshan Lake National High Tech Development Zone and jointly built by Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security of China and People’s Government of Guangdong Province, is a key platform where the city is implementing its strategies for finding a home for talented individuals and technological innovations that they will bring as well as attracting postgrads returning from the studies overseas and would be inclined to start businesses in the city. The incubator is now home to 357 firms, of which 19 are in high-tech sectors, with total registered contracted capital reaching 1.463 billion yuan (approx. US$234 million). The incubator brought in 277 PhDs and 250 holders of master’s degrees, of which 251 are returnees from overseas, including 11 selected candidates from China’s national "Thousand Talents Program." Sixteen of the individuals are top professionals in the areas of innovation and career creation, accounting for over a half of the total in Dongguan.

One of the directors at the incubator explained that they expect to attract more overseas talents who will bring their creativity to Dongguan and likely start a business there as a result of the more favorable talent recruitment policies in combination with the complete industry chain and the city’s unique geographical advantages.

Offering 1:1 match to national subsidies to qualified talent with unique characteristics

Dongguan unveiled a set of the most ever favorable to date "interim policies for attracting talent with special and distinctive qualities" via the Business Incubator. Firstly, the city will match subsidies to talented individuals who are selected for national and provincial projects. The municipal government will offer subsidies ranging between a 1:1 and 1:2 match to recognized talented individuals such as individuals who have obtained national honors and awards including the country’s national "Thousand Talents Program" as well as those who have been selected for the special and distinctive designation by Dongguan’s municipal government. For those who moved in Dongguan from elsewhere, the municipal government will offer a 1:0.5 to 1:1 match to the national subsidies. Similarly talented individuals selected by the province’s science and technology innovation team and who have received national and provincial honors and awards will receive a 1:0.5 to 1:1 match to the national and provincial subsidies. In addition, the incentives for talented individuals selected by the science and technology innovation team as well as those individuals designated by the city as having a special talent in the area of innovation and career creation have been enhanced. The former will receive one-time subsidies of between 5 million yuan (approx. US$800,000) and 10 million yuan (approx. US$1.6 million), while the latter will receive subsidies between 1 million yuan (approx. US$160,000) and 2 million yuan (approx. US$320,000).

In addition to grants offered by the municipal government, the initiators of projects approved by national, provincial and municipal regulators will also receive a rare and distinctive 1:1 match to the subsidies from Songshan Lake.

Building high-quality technological platforms and improving support services

The technological platform is a key venue for the showcasing of technological projects, the bringing together the pool of talented individuals and the promoting the industrial and commercial application of the high-tech innovations. In a move to offer more career opportunities to talented and senior professionals, Songshan Lake is investing in the building of high-quality platforms at the Business Incubator. The entity is committed to improving its incubation service system, establishing its own service brand and providing businesses with one-stop services that include end-to-end processing of all paperwork as well as assistance with office set up and project applications. To make this all happen, the incubator plans to leverage its resources to establish the incubation service system and public technology platform as well as develop tailored financing products as well as offer human resources, entrepreneurial training, promotion and other services which it will offer at no charge.

Models of uniting talented returnees

As an expert specially engaged in the Thousand Person Plan initiated by the central government, Zhuang Dejin is a "model" returnee at the Business Incubator. In 2004, Dr. Zhuang received his PhD at Kansas State University in 2004, where he had participated and led a number of research projects funded by the US military. In 2007, he was invited back home to build a team for independently developing encoders. On his several field trips, Dr. Zhuang was impressed by the research environment, living facilities and landscape of the Business Incubator. As a result of his positive impressions, he formed and registered his business Incode Automation there and received a 10 million yuan grant from Songshan Lake National Hi-tech Industrial Development Zone for his entrepreneurial leadership. Within two years of development, Incode Automation became one of the only two businesses (the other one is Germany-based encoder leader Heidenhain) that successfully improved the resolution of absolute rotary encoders to 21 bits. Incode Automation will start to formally market its absolute rotary encoder and begin large-scale manufacturing of the product within the upcoming year.

With the Business Incubator’s full range of incubation services, many businesses are able to grow rapidly and become competitive by making full use of their research prowess and accurate market positioning. The new incubator space at the Business Incubator will help entice more talented returnees. Upon completion, the new incubator space now under the first phase of construction is expected to address the innovation and entrepreneurship needs of returnees as well as the companies and research institutions that will make use of and benefit from their efforts.

China Dongguan Business Incubator for Returned Personnel
Tel: +86-769???2289-1329 / 2289-1900

* The above information is provided and confirmed by China Dongguan Business Incubator for Returned Overseas Personnel, and issued on behalf of China Technology Media by Guangdong Innovation Technology Media Service Center.

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