SHENZHEN – Co-organized by OPPO and The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), and supported by the China Alliance of Social Value Investment (CASVI), the Youth Innovation Acceleration Camp was held in Shenzhen from 14th-17th December. The camp aims to empower social entrepreneurs, and to connect them with investment, industrial, and academic resources to further develop their business, and to help achieve the UN 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
This year’s Youth Innovation Acceleration Camp focused on three main themes: environmental protection, digital inclusion, and health and wellbeing. A total of 20 youth-led tech start-ups were invited to attend the camp, ranging from angel-invested startups to those with Series A funding. The camp also invited partners of industry and investors to deliver sessions on business analysis, marketing, impact financing and design thinking. In order to adapt to the demands of different entrepreneurs, the camp also includes consulting sessions such as start-up fair and one-on-one mentoring, to help further develop their business model.
A Demo day was held on the final day of the camp, where 10 selected start-ups showcased their innovative business models and ideas to an audience of industrial partners and investors. Two social enterprises were awarded the Most Promising Start-Up Award. Orcauboat uses autonomous robotics operations to clean floating garbage and its intelligent maintenance and management solutions for urban waterways is both more efficient and reduces costs by 60%. Bluewind provides technical solutions for high carbon emission enterprises through self-developed carbon capture technology.
“OPPO is proud to be a supporter of young people and their dreams, with whom we have a long history of working together to better achieve the SDGs,” said Sonia Miao, OPPO Associate Vice President, Head of Strategy and Business Development. “Aligned with our brand mission of ‘Technology for Mankind, Kindness for the World’, OPPO is taking actions to contribute to sustainable development, with focus on key areas such as environmental protection, youth empowerment, digital inclusion as well as health and wellbeing. The road to achieve SDGs is not an easy one, and as with any form of innovation and entrepreneurship. This requires us to embrace our passions, dare to explore, and move forward with optimism and confidence. At OPPO, we fully advocate for such values, which are embodied in our recently-launched brand propositioning, ‘Inspiration Ahead’”.
“Entrepreneurial spirit is an essential component in advancing our shared ambition to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals and we will continue to support the most creative, intelligent and daring youth of today in this mission, ” said Beate Trankmann, UNDP Resident Representative in China.
Weihua Ma, Chairman of CASVI, called on the investors and industrial partners present to jointly promote impact investment and support enterprises to stay on a sustainable path. “Promoting sustainable development has become the greatest social responsibility of enterprises,” he said.
Since entering into a one-year partnership in August 2021, OPPO and the UNDP set up a 1 million CNY（approximately 157,000 USD） Youth Innovation Grants and worked together in a number of ways to support young entrepreneurs and social innovators in contributing solutions to SDGs. For example, as a partner of the 2021 National Dialogue China, OPPO offered 300,000 CNY (approximately 46,000 USD) in OPPO Innovation Grants to eight outstanding entrepreneurial projects.
OPPO has long taken action on youth empowerment, and has worked with young creators and artists to express their innovative ideas. Since 2019, OPPO has held its annual Renovators Emerging Artists Project, which creates a platform for young artists to imagine how art and technology will intertwine in the future, while raising public awareness around social issues such as environmental protection through innovative expressions of technology and art. The program is tucked in as part of the OPPO Reno series campaigns. In 2020, OPPO also established the influential “Young Talent Hub” to build a communication platform for young KOLs around the world and established the Dream Fund with 500,000 CNY (approximately USD 71,000) to help them realize their creative plans. Meanwhile, on the World Youth Day 2021, OPPO launched a video competition with the theme of youth and sustainable development to encourage young creators to promote SDGs through creative videos.
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