Equipping the next generation for China business

CAMP speaker Danmaji Niu

An award-winning program connecting future young entrepreneurs from Australia and China will explore opportunities for launching businesses in China’s fast-paced innovation sector.

The China Australia Millennial Project (CAMP) will host ‘See the Future: China Innovation Update’ at Sydney Town Hall on Tuesday 13 June 2017. The event and gala dinner on June 16 2017 is the culmination of a 100-day bilateral accelerator program held in Shanghai and Sydney for the young Australian and Chinese leaders.

The City of Sydney has sponsored CAMP since 2015 and is supporting the 2017 program with $30,000 funding and more than $26,000 value in-kind venue support.

Lord Mayor Clover Moore said CAMP was a great opportunity to showcase Sydney’s knowledge and creativity, while encouraging collaboration between the next generation of Australian and Chinese leaders.

“We’re committed to supporting emerging entrepreneurs and nurturing their ideas through programs such as CAMP,” the Lord Mayor said.

“This is equipping the next generation of Australian entrepreneurs with the cultural understanding and networking skills required to navigate the important economic relationship with China.

“China is transforming its economy to become a global leader in science and technology. This program offers a unique opportunity for the young leaders of Australian and Chinese startups to connect, share knowledge and work together to solve common problems.

“Our support for CAMP is part of our growing relationship with China and will provide valuable opportunities for cross-cultural collaboration that will attract foreign visitors, support the local economy and foster innovation.”

CAMP CEO Andrea Myles said the unique program was a blueprint for building bilateral relationships between Australia and China.

“CAMP’s goal is to connect 100,000 Australians with new opportunities in China by 2025, connecting a generation whose careers will be characterised by the rise of the middle class in China and the impacts of the digital and artificial intelligence revolutions that alone will see impacts 30 times larger than the industrial revolution,” Ms Myles said.

“In many ways there’s little understanding locally about the speed of change in China’s innovation sector, or how to access what’s going on. We’re in danger of being left behind if we don’t start to learn how to operate within the amazing ecosystem that’s developing and evolving as we speak.”

‘See the Future: China Innovation Update’ will feature eight minute presentations from eight speakers who will provide insights into the rapidly evolving Chinese innovation landscape.

Speakers include: Jess Scully, City of Sydney Councillor, Daniel Zhan, Landing Pad Manager, Austrade Shanghai, Sandy Plunkett, Founder Innovation Clearinghouse and commentator on innovation, James Hudson, director corporate affairs and marketing, Alibaba Group Australia and New Zealand, and Danmaji Niu, founder of China-based social enterprise, Yak My Body.

Danmaji Niu attended the 2015 CAMP and returns to the 2017 event as a speaker after launching a social enterprise in her native Gansu province, a Tibetan region in north-west China. Her business supports local women to produce handmade yak milk soap which she exports to Australia, China and America.

Now a Sydney resident after studying at the University of Technology Sydney and the University of Sydney, Ms Niu says there are many opportunities for Australian businesses looking to launch in China.

“The key is to identify gaps in the market and explore how you can fill them to get a foothold in the international startup world. Australian entrepreneurs need to make themselves adaptable, but with a strong team, I think they can exist and thrive in this fast-paced environment,” Ms Niu said.

“CAMP is a great way to learn the skills you’ll need. Being part of the program helped me form my business idea and tap into the CAMP network here and in China. I now have mentoring and professional networks from 2015 that I use every day.”

Source: City of Sydney

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