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Sci-tech Innovation
 
 
 
Shanghai Constructs a Global Science Innovation C...
By Shao Ning


Now an innovation service chain with the structure of “before business startups — business startups nursery— incubator — accelerator” has been established in Wujiaochang area. Carriers for entrepreneurship cover four categories, providing various kinds of services to new business starters. There are 8 industrial parks in Wujiaochang area for supporting college students to start up business: Yangpu District Science and Technology Innovation Center, Wujiaochang Hi-tech Park, Knowledge & Innovation Community, Hi-tech Park of Fudan University, Hi-tech Park of Shanghai University of Finance and Economics, Cloud Computing Hi-tech Park, Internet of Things Hi-tech Park and Education Service Industrial Park. So far, these parks have given support to 2,876 small and medium-sized technological enterprises.


“Yangpu District will build a “Gold Triangle Innovation and Entrepreneurship Zone on Daxue Road”. In the future, Yangpu District will build a large “Knowledge & Innovation Community”, use the district’s abundant resources of old factory buildings, strengthen the efforts of functional modification and innovation, and build Yangpu District into a model district for popular innovation with influence at home and abroad.


Yangpu District is surrounded by a trend of “popular entrepreneurship and innovation.”


Many fashionable people in Shanghai considered Daxue Road in Wujiaochang as a new landmark of fashion. This is a street full of exotic flavor. There are several cafés, restaurants, chocolate and dessert shops and flower shops on the street.


Indeed, Daxue Road, as a street located in the central area of Knowledge & Innovation Community, draws inspiration and design concepts from Silicon Valley in San Francisco and the “living and working community” on the left bank of Paris. It is different from other fashionable areas in Shanghai for dining and recreation. Knowledge & Innovation Community, jointly invested and constructed by Yangpu Science and Technology Innovation Group and Shui On Group, Kong Kong, is a new knowledge-based community in Shanghai. After over ten years’ development, this community integrates university campuses, public communities and hi-tech parks in Wujiaochang area together. Nearly one thousand enterprises have settled in office buildings covering 650,000 square meters, including many Fortune 500 enterprises, e.g. IBM, EMC and Oracle.


Innovation and wisdom gathers here at the beginning.


An entrepreneurship café on business for 24 hours


At the corner of Daxue Road and Jinjia Road, you would see a café named “IPO Club”. This is a café with four stories. The entire building is separated into several smaller spaces. As a café on business for 24 hours, customers go in and out in the whole day. People come to this café, not only for having a cup of coffee, but more importantly, for negotiating business projects. This is a café for entrepreneurs, similar to 3W café in Zhongguancun, Beijing.


A 600-square meter’s space is suitable for carrying out various events. It allows for various kinds of creative ideas, point-of-views and concepts colliding with each other. 50 to 60 salons, e.g. “salon of entrepreneurship instructors”, “guidance to entrepreneurship” and “salons for various sectors” would be held in the café in each month. The “Angle’s Afternoon Tea” on every Thursday has become a brand of the café. On this “Angle’s afternoon tea”, 3 investors would give interviews to 30 to 40 entrepreneurship teams. Newly-established entrepreneurship teams could borrow a small room upstairs and work on laptops until midnight.


Wang Jun, CEO of IPO Club, is a man over thirty years old. Before opening this café with other shareholders, he has founded an Internet company by himself. “It is a lonely and tough process to start up your own business,” he said. For this reason, he hoped to use his own experiences to help other people to start up their own business. Since the café opened to business one year ago, 20 to 30 projects have found out investors here, e.g. “ostrich radio” and “Qishu cloud notes”. Startup business nowadays has a very short cycle from origination of ideas to getting investment. For example, the founder of “Where enterprises should go”, a platform providing online registration service to enterprises, went to the café with his project in February this year. In the last month, he has received 5 million yuan of venture capital.


In Knowledge & Innovation Community, there are 7 platforms like IPO Club for serving new business starters, including InnoSpace, IT orange, Three café, Makers Camp and Makers Community. 


A clustering place for grassroots entrepreneurship teams in Shanghai


Interestingly, the 700 meter’s long Daxue Road is the only road in Yangpu District allows for “doing business outdoors”. Yu Xiang, Secretary of Party Committee of Wujiaochang Sub-district, witnessed the vicissitudes of Daxue Road: “Outdoor seats are inevitable on Daxue Road. Human is the vitality and source for innovation. It is difficult for entrepreneurs to come up with creative ideas if they can not see people walking on the street”. But there are rules for “doing business outdoors”. Shop owners can not do business anywhere, and the order on the road relies on shop owner’s self-governance.


Daxue Road, as a place attracting many new business starters, is only a part of the entire “Wujiaochang” entrepreneurship area. Now an innovation service chain with the structure of “before business startups — business startups nursery— incubator — accelerator” has been established in Wujiaochang area. Carriers for entrepreneurship cover four categories, providing various kinds of services to new business starters. The “Innovation and Entrepreneurship Base for Overseas High-end Talents” has attracted 481 enterprises to settle in Yangpu. All of them are founded by overseas talents returned to China. Model entrepreneurship platforms, e.g. China (Shanghai) Public Training Base for Entrepreneurs, have incubated 599 projects. The project incubation rate is 48.5%, higher than other entrepreneurship nurseries in Shanghai; there are 8 industrial parks in Wujiaochang area for supporting college students to start up business: Yangpu District Science and Technology Innovation Center, Wujiaochang Hi-tech Park, Knowledge & Innovation Community, Hi-tech Park of Fudan University, Hi-tech Park of Shanghai University of Finance and Economics, Cloud Computing Hi-tech Park, Internet of Things Hi-tech Park and Education Service Industrial Park. So far, these parks have given support to 2,876 small and medium-sized technological enterprises.


Wang Jun, who has tried to start up business in Minhang, Xuhui and Pudong New Area of Shanghai, is impressed by the atmosphere for entrepreneurship in Wujiaochang: Wujiaochang could be said as a place in Shanghai with most concentrated resource of grassroots entrepreneurship teams. In the eyes of many new business starters, there are two ideal places for entrepreneurship in China: One is the entrepreneurship street in Zhongguancun, Beijing, and the other is Wujiaochang in Shanghai.


Yangpu District will build a large “Knowledge & Innovation Community”


From “Knowledge-based Yangpu” in 2003 to “Entrepreneurship Yangpu” in 2012, entrepreneurship has become a keyword for transformation and development of Yangpu District. Statistics showed that in the past three years, Yangpu District has completed construction for entrepreneurship platforms covering 2.03 million square meters, helped 1,995 people to start up their own business, and created jobs for 22,400 people. The employment driving rate is 1:11.2, higher than other districts in Shanghai. Because of the district’s success in supporting entrepreneurship in the past decade, Shanghai Municipal Government decided to award Yangpu District as a “model district for popular innovation” during the process of constructing Shanghai Science and Technology Innovation Center.


Zhuge Yujie, Yangpu District Party Chief, said that Yangpu District will take this opportunity to accelerate the construction for Yangpu National Innovation-oriented Pilot Urban Area and promote the combination of industries, urban areas and universities. Follow the requirements of innovation and entrepreneurship in terms of urban planning, design and development space, develop private service agencies for makers and new-type incubators run by non-governmental institutions and establish new streets and communities of innovation and entrepreneurship.


Yangpu District will build a “Gold Triangle Innovation and Entrepreneurship Zone on Daxue Road”. In the future, Yangpu District will build a large “Knowledge & Innovation Community”, use the district’s abundant resources of old factory buildings, strengthen the efforts of functional modification and innovation, and build Yangpu District into a model district for popular innovation with influence at home and abroad.


Yangpu District is welcoming a new round of “popular entrepreneurship and innovation” trend. 


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