New China-U.S. Start-up Competition Swaps Money for Talent
Silicon Valley has no shortage of start-up competitions, but, it seems, there's always room for one more. A new competition launching in June brings together the Valley and its Chinese counterpart Zhongguancun Science Park--or "Z-Park"--in Beijing. The curious part? What you win depends on where you're from.
Finalists from the United States, for example, stand to win up to $50,000 in cash from both Chinese and American VCs. Meanwhile, the Beijing finalists compete to receive, well, a handshake: They'll get free access to the Z-Park incubator, run by Hanhai Investment, and networking opportunities with Chinese investors.
So what gives? After all, "cash" sounds way better than "networking opportunity," right?
Not necessarily, says Larry Li, co-founder of Z Park Venture, an investment firm that will be supporting the competition. He argues that in the Beijing start-up community there is plenty of venture capital, but not as many experienced technology entrepreneurs.