02 Dec 2016

MR No.: 059/16         

Singapore, Friday, 2 December 2016  

  1. International Enterprise (IE) Singapore, CapitaLand and UrWork today signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to facilitate Singapore companies’ entry into China amid the growing trend of the sharing economy. This first-of-its kind tripartite partnership among a Singapore government agency, Asia’s leading real estate company headquartered and listed in Singapore and China’s leading co-working space operator, will provide a conducive working environment, leads and business advisory services, smoothening the market entry process for SMEs.
  1. The partnership will also see CapitaLand launch co-working space in its malls for the first time, and create new investment opportunities for CapitaLand’s venture capital arm, C31 Ventures, as part of the real estate giant’s push to leverage digital innovation to build the real estate of the future. For UrWork, it marks a step forward for its internationalisation plans and strengthens its growing network of members that comprises potential unicorns.
  1. The MOU was signed by Mr Yew Sung Pei, Assistant Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of IE Singapore, Mr Lucas Loh, CEO of CapitaLand China and Mr Brian Liu Yan, CFO of UrWork, witnessed by Mr Lee Ark Boon, CEO of IE Singapore, Mr Lim Ming Yan, President & Group CEO of CapitaLand Limited and Mr Mao Daqing, Founder of UrWork.

Singapore SMEs will benefit from chain effects of these co-working spaces

  1. The tripartite MOU covers the following key areas:

    1. CapitaLand will work with UrWork to provide co-working spaces in CapitaLand’s properties in China and Singapore. As the agency partnering Singapore companies to go global, IE Singapore will identify and link potential Singapore SMEs to these co-working spaces in China.
        Benefits to SMEs
        • The co-working spaces provide a conducive business environment for Singapore SMEs, allowing them to interact with like-minded business partners. They will also get preferential membership fees, allowing them to access high-quality office facilities at low cost.
        • Companies can validate their innovations across CapitaLand’s real estate portfolio (integrated developments, shopping malls, serviced residences, offices and homes), helping them to build track record and scale up in China.
        • To further facilitate SMEs’ entry to the market, IE Singapore will recommend business advisory services of Singapore professional services players at these co-working spaces. This includes business incorporation, financing, legal and tax. Some companies on board include Boardroom, Rajah and Tann and UOB, who will be able to promote their services to UrWork’s Chinese and Singapore companies.

    2. UrWork will include CapitaLand’s venture capital arm, C31 Ventures, in its list of preferred venture capital partners. Singapore companies and/or UrWork’s members with innovative concepts can market themselves to C31 to be considered for financing by the venture.

    3. IE Singapore and UrWork will jointly attract and groom a group of talents to drive innovation, entrepreneurship and internationalisation through regular seminars, thematic exchanges, networking sessions and internship opportunities

  1. Mr Lee Ark Boon said, “This tripartite partnership strengthens IE Singapore’s networks, allowing us to provide ready and better support to Singapore companies to accelerate their market expansion into China. It will also catalyse exchanges between Singapore SMEs and Chinese enterprises, enabling our enterprises to cross-learn and co-create ideas to scale up in China.”
  1. Mr Lim Ming Yan said, “CapitaLand aims to provide real estate of the future and working closely with sharing economy players and technology startups is an important pillar of this strategic thrust. In June, we launched our first co-working space in Capital Tower in Singapore, as we pilot our concept for the office of the future, where people work in hubs of collaboration, community and creativity. We will also be providing co-working spaces in Ascott’s newly-launched Lyf residences. We look forward to this new partnership with IE Singapore and UrWork as we will be bringing co-working spaces into our malls for the first time. The retail environment provides a ‘living lab’ for some of the latest innovations undertaken by the startups. At the same time, it enables us to observe first-hand the latest innovations in action as we continue to enhance our integrated offline-and-online (O&O) offerings. Potentially we could also invest in some of the startups through CapitaLand’s venture capital arm, C31 Ventures.”
  1. Mr Mao Daqing said, “Singapore offers a favorable business environment for innovation and entrepreneurship, and China presents a massive market for thriving innovative activities. Through this tripartite MOU, Singapore startups will gain access to China’s market, while Chinese startups will have an international platform to exhibit and grow their businesses. It is of great significance to us at UrWork to be able to help deepen the bilateral economic and trade cooperation between China and Singapore, and to create opportunities for innovation and entrepreneurship in both countries.
  1. Singapore SMEs can tap IE Singapore’s Market Readiness Assistance Grant (MRA) for assistance on overseas market set up activities. As UrWork members, they can leverage UrWork’s vast networks and resources in over 10 cities across China, including Tier 1 cities of Beijing, Shanghai and Shenzhen. When ready to move to graded office buildings, they can tap CapitaLand’s network of 19 premium office developments in 11 high-growth Chinese cities, including its Raffles City in Beijing, Hangzhou, Shanghai and Shenzhen.

First fruits of the tripartite partnership

  1. The partnership has already borne its first fruits – UrWork will open a co-working space in two of 65 CapitaLand malls in China in the next six months, as the trend of locating co-working space in retail malls takes off globally. An entrepreneurship mentoring system and integrated business advisory services have been set up, including link-ups to investors. These co-working spaces will provide members with convenient access to modern amenities, and offer the added advantage of enabling these companies to test-bed their innovations and subsequently sell their products in the malls. The first co-working space in CapitaMall Minzhongleyuan, Wuhan, sprawls 4,100 square metres (sqm) and will open in phases from next month. This will be followed by a 1,300-sq m space in CapitaMall Wangjing, Beijing, slated to open in the first half of next year. These two co-working spaces are expected to accommodate more than 600 work stations.

Annex: Speech by Mr Yew Sung Pei, Assistant Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of IE Singapore


Note to Editor

Please use ‘IE Singapore’ if an acronym for ‘International Enterprise Singapore’ is required. Unless otherwise stated, the use of statistics cited in our media releases, website or Statlink, should be attributed to IE Singapore.

For media enquiries and/or event photos, please contact:
IE Singapore
Ms Foo Xiao Xuan
Manager, Media
Corporate Communications Group
DID: (+65) 6433 4400
Email: foo_xiao_xuan@iesingapore.gov.sg

Ms Chia Pei Siang
Senior Manager,
Group Communications
DID: (+65) 6713 1379
Email: chia.peisiang@capitaland.com

About International Enterprise Singapore

IE Singapore is the government agency promoting international trade and partnering Singapore companies in going global. Our vision is a thriving business hub in Singapore with Globally Competitive Companies and leading international traders.

IE Singapore attracts global commodities traders to establish their global or Asian home base in Singapore. Today, Singapore is a thriving trading hub with a complete ecosystem for the energy, agri-commodities and metals & minerals trading clusters.

Through our Global Company Partnership and Market Readiness Assistance, we also work with Singapore-based companies in their various stages of growth towards being globally competitive.

Our global network of overseas centres in over 35 locations provides the necessary connections in many developed and emerging markets. Visit www.iesingapore.gov.sg for more information.


About CapitaLand (www.capitaland.com)

CapitaLand is one of Asia’s largest real estate companies headquartered and listed in Singapore. The company leverages its significant asset base, design and development capabilities, active capital management strategies, extensive market network and operational capabilities to develop high-quality real estate products and services. Its diversified global real estate portfolio includes integrated developments, shopping malls, serviced residences, offices and homes. Its two core markets are Singapore and China, while Indonesia, Malaysia and Vietnam have been identified as new growth markets. The company also has one of the largest real estate fund management businesses with assets located in Asia.

CapitaLand’s listed real estate investment trusts are CapitaLand Mall Trust, CapitaLand Commercial Trust, Ascott Residence Trust, CapitaLand Retail China Trust and CapitaLand Malaysia Mall Trust.


About UrWork

UrWork is a leading co-working space company in China, privately owned and established by Prof. Mao Daqing (the founder of UrWork) together with well-known Chinese investors such as ZHEN Fund, Sequoia Capital, NOAH Wealth Management and other individual investors in April 2015, with a total initial investment of RMB80 million and approximately 200 employees. As of August of 2016, UrWork’s market valuation reached RMB3.4 billion; and, after completion of their latest round of financing, their market valuation reached RMB5.5 billion.

As of August, 2016, they have signed 25 projects in China, reaching a total of 80,000 square metres, offering 20,000 seatings; It is expected to open a total of 36 projects, reaching a total of 180,000 square metres, offering 30,000 seatings, by the end of 2016. Over the same period, the market coverage is anticipated to reach 16 cities, namely Beijing, Tianjin, Yantai, Qingdao, Jinan, Xiangyang, Hefei, Nanjing, Ningbo, Shanghai, Hangzhou, Xiamen, Taiyuan, Chengdu, Xi’an and Shenzhen.

At present, in UrWork’s ecosystem, there are 324 service vendors, above 600 resident members and Investment Institutes situated in their spaces, consisting of HR, Legal Services, Healthcare, Finance, Internet, Intelligent Hardware, Art & Design, New Energy, Entertainment & Media, etc. By far, UrWork is the largest and most recognised co-working space brand in China.