In July 2016 SILK Ventures concluded its first scale-up programme in China. UK-based startups selected to participate in the programme, including Revolut, Gamewheel and Silicon Markets, took part in an intensive 3-week programme designed to facilitate Asian market expansion via strategic investment, partnerships with Chinese corporations and strong government support.
Innovation-hungry Chinese buyers that participated in the acceleration programme included companies with over $1tn combined assets under management such as TUS Holdings, Alipay and various financial institutions, but also venture capital investors ChinaEquity Group and China's 'Silicon Valley' Zhongguancun-Innoway.
The programme was supported by the governments of 5 major Chinese cities and included high level meetings between the entrepreneurs and officials at the Ministry of Commerce.
The scale-up programme also included a half-day seminar on key legal aspects to consider when expanding into the Chinese market, delivered by Dentons - China's largest law firm.
Angelica Anton, Founder and Managing Partner at SILK Ventures, said: “The opportunity for foreign technology companies in China is significant. Our scale-up mechanism combines the capabilities of China's largest companies, their need to innovate by investing in technology, and the support of the government to provide unique, fast-tracked access to this vast market. This way, we aim to unlock the significant potential that exists in the UK’s tech scene.”
Evgeni Kouris, CEO at Gamewheel, commented: “With the help of Silk Ventures, we’ve been able to access the perfect market. After being in China for just one week, we could have closed the Series A funding round we were thinking of attempting in the US."