Microsoft’s Inaugural Greater Bay Area Innovation Summit Unveils Vision to Accelerate the Digital Transformation of the Region

 |   Rita Ngai

group

Aims to be a key contributor in grooming tech communities in GBA through announcing the first Microsoft x GitHub GBA Hackathon

March 6, 2019, Hong Kong –– Microsoft today organized its inaugural Greater Bay Area (GBA) Innovation Summit at Shenzhen, demonstrating its commitment as a key contributor to transform the Area into the global innovation and technology hub. Through inspiring and connecting over 500 participants of the technology communities, Microsoft aims to foster a holistic partner ecosystem in GBA and is committed to leverage its leading expertise in Artificial Intelligence (AI), Internet of Things (IoT), cloud computing and big data to accelerate the digital transformation of the Area.

“Today, we are part of an exciting chapter in the GBA history. With the geographic disparity and diverse language capabilities within GBA, AI will play a key role for companies seeking to collaborate and operate more effectively. We are thrilled about the tremendous opportunities presented to entrepreneurs and companies. Microsoft has been supporting the innovation and technology developments within the Area. Through our expertise at AI, IoT, cloud computing and big data, we will be the catalyst and help different GBA industries, companies, partners, startups and technology developers in realizing this incredible opportunity, transforming Hong Kong and the GBA into a global innovation powerhouse,” said Horace Chow, Chief Operation Officer, Microsoft China.

horace
Microsoft China Chief Operating Officer Mr. Horace Chow and Microsoft Hong Kong and Macau General Manager Ms. Cally Chan shared Microsoft’s vision in the Greater Bay Area, aiming to foster a holistic partner ecosystem in GBA and is committed to leverage its leading expertise in Artificial Intelligence (AI), Internet of Things (IoT), cloud computing and big data to accelerate the digital transformation of the Area.

Microsoft x GitHub to drive the development of technology talents in GBA

One of Microsoft’s key focuses within the GBA is to foster the flow of technology talent and resources exchange. As the first wave of a series of events, Microsoft today announced its partnership with GitHub, the world’s leading online open source community, introducing the first joint GBA hackathon. Themed around AI, the event aims to attract over 450 partners within the Area, providing an ideal platform for participants to exchange ideas and inspire each other.

“Home to many startups, Hong Kong has been transforming into a major technology manufacturing and innovation hub for the Greater Bay Area and Asia. We are excited to be launching the first joint GBA hackathon with GitHub, hoping to offer valuable opportunities to motivate the tech communities in Hong Kong and Greater Bay Area, as well as playing a key role in grooming tech talents. We are in a good position to form a world-class Bay Area that will play a leading role not only in global finance and trade, but also innovation,” said Cally Chan, General Manager of Microsoft Hong Kong.

cally
Microsoft China Chief Operating Officer Mr. Horace Chow and Microsoft Hong Kong and Macau General Manager Ms. Cally Chan shared Microsoft’s vision in the Greater Bay Area, aiming to foster a holistic partner ecosystem in GBA and is committed to leverage its leading expertise in Artificial Intelligence (AI), Internet of Things (IoT), cloud computing and big data to accelerate the digital transformation of the Area.

During today’s Summit, Microsoft’s top technology partners and rising startups shared their innovative solutions that based on Microsoft technology, and how GBA businesses can grasp and maximize the huge innovation and technology potential in the Area to achieve more. Partners include:

  • Leading Edge: A company with diverse capabilities including providing colloquial Cantonese and Mandarin social listening; as well as e-commerce recommendation and logistics distribution with the empowerment of AI and big data in various business context
  • Continuous Technologies International Ltd (CTINT): Ensure 100% call center quality and compliance check even for large volume of calls, thanks to Cantonese/ Mandarin/ English transcription and translation, as well as semantic language understanding;
  • Pinlan: Based on the self-developed Pinshi AI product recognition platform, Pinlan provides retailers and brands with shelf management solutions to effectively gather market intelligence and optimize business operation management decisions;
  • Ein+: Provide intelligent human-machine interaction technologies for industries, Ein+’s “knowledge graph chatbot” has already been implemented in several sectors including insurance, banking, automotive, education and more.

Microsoft’s key focus for the Greater Bay Area

To foster tighter collaboration and to capture this unprecedented business opportunity, Microsoft will actively support the development of innovation, technology within GBA by leveraging its extensive research and innovation capabilities in the following areas:

  • Focus on AI and IoT to drive for robust regional I&T development in the region with Azure Cloud computing platform: Democratizing AI for customized uses through cognitive services, conversational AI, open platforms and tool. Currently, over 1 million developers are using Microsoft’s 24 services at those area across the world. In terms of Intelligent Edge, Microsoft has also launched Azure IoT Edge service for a new wave of edge computing, enabling developers to deploy and operate AI and Azure services directly across a wide range of cross-platform IoT devices through cloud.
  • Drive Digital Transformation and Accelerate Commercialization of Scientific and Technological Achievements: In addition to driving the advancement of emerging technologies, Microsoft is also committed to empowering digital transformation in traditional industries. Moving forward, Microsoft and its ecosystem of partners will work together to accelerate digital transformation in four areas, including improving client communication, empowering employees, optimizing operations and digitalizing products. Targeting the key traditional industries in the region such as automotive, household appliance manufacturing, retail and financial services, Microsoft will combine specific industry needs with digital transformation use cases to develop digital solutions that are tailored to Greater Bay Area’s unique economy and industrial characteristics.
  • Nurture next-generation talents, facilitate local technology developments: Further invest in training up talents in Hong Kong and GBA, such as introducing free technical training through programs like Azure School which provides foundation, intermediate and advanced AI courses, Microsoft Learn, Tech Academy and Microsoft Professional Program (MPP) to promote and empower every person and organization with the knowledge and use of AI.
  • Establish an integrated network to contribute to the competitiveness of the regional development to go global: With 54 Azure Regions worldwide, more global regions than any other cloud provider, Microsoft Azure’s powerful network and capabilities in AI, IoT and big data solution provide a collaborative platform for coordinated innovation, application and services. This helps GBA businesses to meet challenges and participate in international innovation and technology cooperation.

Microsoft is committed to inspire and enable companies in GBA to achieve long-term success. To deepen the company’s long-standing AI and IoT technology capabilities within the Area, Microsoft opened its technology R&D center in Shenzhen in 2007. In order to further develop IoT in the region, Microsoft opened an IoT lab in Shenzhen in 2016. In November 2017, Microsoft launched the Microsoft Cloud and Mobile Incubator focused on AI development within the Nansha and Guangzhou districts. In September 2018, Microsoft announced strategic alliance with over 600 partners, collaborating with them closely on computer vision, product recognition and speech recognition capabilities to jointly develop industry solutions and go-to-market initiatives in Hong Kong and the Great Bay Area. Most recently, in December 2018, Shenzhen was selected as one of the key stops of Microsoft’s global program IoT In Action, showcasing Microsoft’s latest development in IoT and Intelligent Edge.

group
(From left to right) Microsoft Hong Kong Director, Marketing and Operations Mr. Chin-Tang Chin, Microsoft Hong Kong Director for One Commercial Partner and Small, Medium and Corporate Customers Ms. Serena Cheung, Microsoft Hong Kong and Macau General Manager Ms. Cally Chan, Hong Kong Cyberport Management Company Limited Chief Executive Officer Mr. Peter Yan, Director General of Invest Shenzhen Mr. Wang Youming, Microsoft China Chief Operating Officer Mr. Horace Chow, Microsoft’s Vice President for the Greater China Region, One Commercial Partner and Commercial Sales Manager Mr. Joe Bao, and Microsoft Greater China Region Chief Technology Officer Dr. Xu MingQiang kicked off Microsoft’s inaugural Greater Bay Area Innovation Summit, unveiling vision to accelerate the digital transformation of the region.

###

About Microsoft

Microsoft (Nasdaq “MSFT” @microsoft) enables digital transformation for the era of an intelligent cloud and an intelligent edge. Its mission is to empower every person and every organization on the planet to achieve more.