Contemporary Amperex Technology’s HK Headquarters and R&D Center Get a HK$1 Billion Boost

  • CATL Invests HK$1 Billion in Hong Kong HQ:
    Contemporary Amperex Technology (CATL), the global EV battery leader, allocates HK$1 billion for its Hong Kong headquarters, focusing on patents and global business expansion.
  • Strategic Focus on R&D and International Growth:
    CATL’s Hong Kong branch aims to develop product patents and enhance its international business, contributing to the growth of Hong Kong’s innovation and technology industry.
  • Significant Investment and Job Creation:
    CATL’s investment of over HK$1 billion is anticipated to create more than 500 job opportunities, marking a promising collaboration with the Hong Kong Science Park.
  • CATL’s Dominance in Research and Market Share:
    In H1 2023, CATL invested 10.6 billion yuan in R&D, holding 22,000 patents. It leads the market with a 37% share, achieving 43% market share from 2021 to H1 2023.
  • Innovative Patent Licensing Model:
    CATL’s chairman, Robin Zeng, emphasizes a patent licensing and operation model, citing low-asset approach and success in licensing to global companies like Ford in the U.S.
  • Confidence in Hong Kong as a Tech Hub:
    Hong Kong’s Secretary for Innovation expresses confidence in CATL’s decision, highlighting Hong Kong’s global connectivity and unique advantage in supporting companies in their global expansion.
Contemporary Amperex Technology’s office in Ningde, Fujian province. (Photo Credit: Getty Images)

Electric Vehicle Battery Leader Invests HK$1 Billion in Hong Kong HQ

Contemporary Amperex Technology (CATL), the top electric vehicle battery maker globally, is putting over HK$1 billion (US$128 million) into its new headquarters in Hong Kong, as announced by the city’s finance chief.

The company’s local branch will primarily focus on developing product patents and expanding its international business, according to the company’s statement.

(From left) Innovation chief Sun Dong, Financial Secretary Paul Chan and company chairman Zeng Yuqun.
(Photo Credit: May Tse/South China Morning Post)
(From left) Innovation chief Sun Dong, Financial Secretary Paul Chan and company chairman Zeng Yuqun.
(Photo Credit: May Tse/South China Morning Post

During a speech on Thursday, Financial Secretary Paul Chan Mo-po expressed his enthusiasm for the battery giant’s decision to establish its overseas headquarters and research and development (R&D) center in the city. He emphasized that this move would accelerate the growth of Hong Kong’s innovation and technology industry.

Promising Investment and Job Opportunities in Hong Kong

“As far as I understand, you will invest more than HK$1 billion and create employment opportunities for more than 500 individuals,” Chan stated during a signing ceremony for an agreement between the company and Hong Kong Science Park, the city’s IT hub.

“This is undoubtedly a significant and promising investment. We also hope that through this collaboration, your company can achieve even greater success on the international stage.”

The company’s chairman, Robin Zeng, mentioned that they would use the city’s free information flow and focus on talent to increase their patents as part of their overseas expansion efforts.

Contemporary Amperex Technology Leads in Research and Market Share

In the first half of this year, Contemporary Amperex Technology invested a significant amount of money, about 10.6 billion yuan (US$1.36 billion), in research and development (R&D). The company, which employs 18,000 R&D staff and holds over 22,000 patents, consistently secures 7,000 to 8,000 new patents annually.

During the same period, Contemporary Amperex Technology dominated the market with a 37% share and outperformed global competitors in shipment volume, reaching a remarkable 43% market share between 2021 and the first half of this year.

Officials and company executives at the signing of the a memorandum of understanding on Thursday. Photo: May Tse
Officials and company executives at the signing of the a memorandum of understanding on Thursday.
(Photo Credit: May Tse/South China Morning Post)

“The products developed by the R&D centre in Hong Kong are patents, which are then licensed to other companies, such as Ford in the United States, from whom we collect licence fees and royalty fees,” Zeng said. “We can also charge by providing services. This patent licensing and operation model is a low-asset approach, particularly in the current complex geopolitical landscape. It proves to be a favourable model.”

Contemporary Amperex Technology’s Confidence in Hong Kong

The Secretary for Innovation, Technology, and Industry, Sun Dong, expressed confidence in Hong Kong as a leading global technology and financial center. He stated that the Contemporary Amperex Technology’s decision to establish its headquarters in the city reflects trust in Hong Kong’s capabilities.

Sun Dong highlighted Hong Kong’s unique advantage of being well-connected to the world, particularly with its close ties to the mainland. He believes that Hong Kong can effectively support the company in expanding its global presence. He reiterated the city’s target of attracting 100 cutting-edge overseas companies within five years.

In October, the government announced that over 30 overseas companies had committed to establishing a presence in Hong Kong through the Office for Attracting Strategic Enterprises. This initiative focuses on attracting companies specializing in healthtech, artificial intelligence, and big data.

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