Entrepreneur week starts at historic cotton mill

The annual Global Entrepreneurship Week was launched in Yangpu District on Monday to follow the national government's calls for mass innovation and entrepreneurship.
Ti Gong

Jue Xing, the abbot of Jade Buddha Temple presents a donation board to the founder of a local startup company. The temple has become a major sponsor for local young entrepreneurs.

The city's annual entrepreneurship week started on Monday at the historic site of China's earliest cotton mill machine factory in Yangpu District.

Demonstration startup projects are selected for awards at the Global Entrepreneurship Week to encourage more to follow the national government's calls for more entrepreneurship-focused courses.

Features of this year's entrepreneurship week are that investors will sponsor startup applicants on site, and donations from the city's Jade Buddha Temple, which has become a major sponsor for local young entrepreneurs.

The event is being held at Changyang Campus, an innovative park renovated from a historic East China cotton mill built by Japanese businessmen in 1920 and later bought by the China cotton mill machine manufacturing company. The site was closed around 2000 in the wake of most cotton mills going bankrupt.

The city government-backed Shanghai Technology Entrepreneurship Foundation for Graduates has sponsored over 1,800 startup projects since its establishment in 2006 with investments from individuals and companies, the foundation announced at the opening session of the entrepreneurship week.

The foundation has received a total of 6,641 applications from graduates for their startup projects during the last decade. Of them, 1,887 have been chosen and sponsored, according to the foundation.

Ti Gong

The Global Entrepreneurship Week is held at the Changyang Campus, an innovative park renovated from a historic East China cotton mill built by Japanese businessmen in 1920.

Ten local startup companies won the "Eyas awards" on Monday along with 30 angel investors who offered the biggest financial contributions to graduate entrepreneurs.

The awarded project includes Taoxixi, a company offering washing services to university students, and Shanghai Yin Ming Electronic Co, which helps to build databases and applications for companies.

Meanwhile, the city's Jade Buddha Temple announced on Monday it will sponsor a further 23 startup projects at the beginning of the entrepreneurship week. Each company can receive a fund from 50,000 yuan (US$7,530) to 200,000 yuan.

The temple's "Juequn entrepreneurship foundation" has sponsored local university graduates to set up 108 startup enterprises via an 8.25 million yuan sponsorship since 2009.

Among the startups sponsored by the temple, over 70 percent have managed to survive for more than three years, while over a third have made annual profits of at least 50 million yuan, according to the Juequn foundation.

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