Singapore companies ink deals to ride tech and consumer wave in Guangdong

A joint venture between Soo Kee Group's bridal specialist brand and Global Crown Group aims to set up 550 point-of-sale outlets in China and Hong Kong by 2022.
A joint venture between Soo Kee Group's bridal specialist brand and Global Crown Group aims to set up 550 point-of-sale outlets in China and Hong Kong by 2022.PHOTO: SK JEWELLERY

SINGAPORE - Singapore companies in sectors ranging from logistics and education to jewellery retail inked agreements on Tuesday (Aug 22) to tap on consumer and technology-related opportunities in Guangdong, China.

Twenty Singapore organisations signed deals for 16 projects in the consumer, logistics and technology sectors. The agreements were sealed in Guangzhou at the eighth Singapore-Guangdong Collaboration Council (SGCC) meeting co-chaired by Mr Ong Ye Kung, the Minister for Education (Higher Education and Skills) and Second Minister for Defence, and Guangdong Governor Ma Xingrui.

Agreements signed include a joint venture between Love & Co International, Soo Kee Group's bridal specialist brand, and Global Crown Group to sell gold and diamond products. The joint venture aims to set up 550 point-of-sale outlets in mainland China and Hong Kong by 2022.

Etonhouse International Pre-School also inked a joint venture agreement with Shenzhen Mingyang Education Group to establish the Shenzhen EtonHouse International Pre-School, marking its first expansion into Shenzhen.

In addition, Mapletree signed a memorandum of understanding with Qingyuan Modern Logistics Park to build integrated logistics facilities, which will serve as an e-commerce hub for white goods manufacturers in the region.

In the tech sector, Techbridge Ventures - a technology commercialisation company established by Nanyang Technological University (NTU) - signed a joint venture agreement with Hong Kong electronics manufacturer PC Partner to establish InnoPartner, a corporate incubator that will groom promising Asian electronics start-ups focusing on clean technology.

Dr Lim Jui, the chairman of Techbridge, said InnoPartner "exemplifies a win-win partnership between Singapore and international companies".

"The joint venture will sharpen PC Partner's competitive edge with access to innovative technologies, and also introduce PC Partner's development expertise to Singapore. This will not only boost the growth of Singapore's dynamic cleantech sector, but also potentially create new jobs and bring other economic benefits," added Dr Lim, who is also the chief executive of NTUitive, NTU's innovation and enterprise arm.

Mr Ong noted that Guangdong was the starting point of China's market reforms and opening up and has experienced strong growth over the last two and a half decades.

Guangdong has been Singapore's top provincial trading partner since 1988. Singapore-Guangdong bilateral trade reached around S$36.5 billion last year.

"Singapore companies across manufacturing, IT, education, lifestyle, retail, logistics have set foot here, and will contribute to and tap on the province's growth and dynamism. Beyond these areas, we are seeing stronger collaboration in R&D, and start-up activities," he added.

Singapore companies invested S$463.8 million in Guangdong last year, with cumulative actual investments amounting to about S$15.1 billion in 2,620 projects. Close to half of these investments were made after the SGCC was set up in 2009.