Are you China Ready? Startup Contest 2018

Featured competition :: Are you China Ready? Startup Contest 2018

Startups: Are you China Ready? It’s about time to find out!

No Chinese contacts? No problem. Never been to China? Not an issue. Not really sure how to mosey into the largest, fastest moving market in the world? Friends, grab your favorite beverage and gather ‘round; I’m about to tell you about your not-so-typical startup competition.

For the 2nd year, 天英汇THero and, with partner StartUp Grind, are smashing down entry barriers to the Chinese market with the “Are You China Ready ?” Startup Contest 2018. It’s a global affair that takes finalists beyond the finish line. Notice the plural “finalists”; sure, there’s a grand prize of $25,000 (!), but the real win is before you even board the plane.

The contest spans nine cities: Berlin, New York, Paris, San Francisco, Seoul, Singapore, Sydney, Tel Aviv, and Toronto. And here’s where it gets awesome - three finalists will be selected from each city and will be whisked away to Guangzhou (flight and hotel paid!), not only to pitch at the finals, but also to gain the training, support, grants (ahem, money), and key introductions to support your first steps in the Middle Kingdom. The goal of the trip is so much more than prize money; it is to provide finalists with deep insights into the feasibility of their businesses in China.

Once in Guangzhou, instead of being shuttled to the final pitch, the 27 finalists will spend about a week with learning about the Chinese market, crafting their pitches to a Chinese audience (believe me, language is the least of your problems), testing your product/service/solution/etc in the for-real China market, and hobnobbing with government, investment and corporate big-leaguers.

The point of the competition is not to win a pitch contest but to leave with the most intimate understanding and insights that are humanly possible, in order to form a rock solid benchmark for your decision to enter the Chinese market or not.

You’ll use all your new knowledge and experience to pitch at the finals, which take place at the Guangzhou International Innovation Festival in early December.

If you have any questions your local StartUp Grind community can provide more information. For the Israelis out there, reach out to Shahar Matorin at StartUp Grind Tel Aviv for assistance as you apply. Not only is he fun to talk to, he is also really helpful and knowledgeable, and an all around a good guy.

Sound good, startups? Go on over to Brinc’s website and apply before September 15th. Brinc co-founder and COO Bay McLaughlin told me they have already received 100s of applications, but he gave me an insider hint on how to stand out from the crowd: Really think about the question, “Why do you think you’re China ready?” and give your most honest, well-researched answer.

Enough reading, get applying! Hope to see you in Guangzhou. #THero2018

MaFai Ma