- News Room
- HKSTP and Black Sesame Technologies Sign Memorandum of Understanding to Propel Development of Hong Kong's Intelligent Vehicle Industry and Advance Microelectronics R&D
Plans to establish a Technology Innovation R&D Center at Hong Kong Science Park with increased commitment to research and personnel investment
(Hong Kong, 6 November 2023) – Hong Kong Science and Technology Parks Corporation (HKSTP) and Black Sesame International Holding Limited (Black Sesame Technologies) today signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to establish the “Black Sesame Hong Kong Technology Innovation R&D Center” at the Hong Kong Science Park. This collaboration seeks to jointly develop an automotive-grade, high-end, intelligent vehicle chip platform to stimulate the growth of Hong Kong's automotive chip industry and enhance its microelectronics ecosystem.
Jointly steered by the Innovation, Technology, and Industry Bureau (ITIB) and the Office for Attracting Strategic Enterprises (OASES), the collaboration between HKSTP and Black Sesame Technologies is committed to propelling the development of Hong Kong's intelligent vehicle industry and enhancing microelectronics R&D. The MoU was signed by Ir Dr HL Yiu, Chief Corporate Development Officer of HKSTP, and Mr Rock Yang, Chief Marketing Officer of Black Sesame International Holding Limited. The signing was witnessed by Professor Sun Dong, Secretary for Innovation, Technology, and Industry; Ms Lillian Cheong, Under Secretary for Innovation, Technology, and Industry; Mr Raymond Fan, Deputy Director-General of the Office for Attracting Strategic Enterprises; Mr Albert Wong, CEO of HKSTP; and Mr Johnson Shan, Founder and CEO of Black Sesame International Holding Limited.
Under the collaboration framework, Black Sesame Technologies will establish its “Black Sesame Hong Kong Technology Innovation R&D Center” at Hong Kong Science Park. The center will be dedicated to high-performance, automotive-grade chip research and development. As part of their ongoing R&D commitment, Black Sesame Technologies plans to make a cumulative investment of approximately US$ 100 million by the end of 2027 and expand its local team to around 100 R&D personnel.
Professor Sun Dong, Secretary for Innovation, Technology and Industry, said: “Black Sesame Technologies’ decision to establish a base in Hong Kong is a strong testament to the city’s I&T capabilities. Alongside the new energy and intelligent vehicle enterprises that have already set up operations in our city, Black Sesame Technologies can collaborate with industry peers to create a robust ecosystem in this sector. This collaboration will effectively integrate Mainland and overseas industrial chains, strengthen Hong Kong's competitiveness in the new energy vehicle field, and promote the development of Hong Kong's overall innovation and technology (I&T) industry. These enterprises will also help attract more I&T and R&D talents from Mainland and overseas to Hong Kong, and contribute to enhancing the skills and technological knowledge of local talents.”
Mr Albert Wong, CEO of HKSTP, said, “The landing of Black Sesame Technologies at Science Park is a powerful affirmation of Hong Kong’s strength in innovation and technology. Microelectronics is one of our key national emerging industries, and Hong Kong’s unique advantages make it an ideal location for the development of the microelectronics industry and deployment of innovative applications. HKSTP will work closely with Black Sesame Technologies to propel the growth of Hong Kong's high-end chip industry. At the same time, we strive to foster strong ties with other companies, universities, and R&D institutions to grow and attract more talent in microelectronics, contributing to creating a comprehensive global chip supply chain and a hub for microelectronics talent in Hong Kong.”
Mr Johnson Shan, Founder and CEO of Black Sesame International Holding Limited, said, “Hong Kong's strategic location, policy support, and R&D capabilities offer distinct advantages, making the collaboration with HKSTP significant for Black Sesame Technologies. On the one hand, we will join forces with HKSTP to fulfil Hong Kong’s innovation and technology objectives and contribute to developing China's intelligent vehicle industry. On the other hand, Black Sesame Technologies has a global presence, and Hong Kong plays a vital role in our global strategy by serving as a bridge that connects us with the rest of the world. Leveraging this base, Black Sesame Technologies is fully committed to fuelling innovation within the global intelligent driving industry.”
The “Hong Kong Innovation and Technology Development Blueprint”, released last year, explicitly endorses the growth of advanced manufacturing industries, such as semiconductor chips. The 2023 Policy Address further announced the establishment of the “Hong Kong Microelectronics Research and Development Institute”. This institute aims to drive collaboration among universities, R&D centers, and corporations, including research into third-generation semiconductor core technologies. Leveraging the comprehensive manufacturing ecosystem and vast market of the Greater Bay Area, these initiatives are set to provide a more conducive environment for developing the microelectronics industry.
Black Sesame Technologies, a leading automotive-grade intelligent vehicle chip and solution provider, has consistently dedicated its efforts towards advancing the application of high-performance automotive-grade chip production. With over 20 years of experience in the automotive chip sector, Black Sesame Technologies provides unique automotive-grade products and technologies critical for intelligent vehicle capabilities such as autonomous driving, smart cockpit, advanced imaging and interconnection. Black Sesame Technologies offers full-stack autonomous driving capabilities to meet a wide range of customer requirements through System on Chips (SoCs) and SoC-based solutions powered by in-house developed IP cores, algorithms and support software.
HKSTP is committed to promoting Hong Kong’s new industrialisation mission and building a world-leading microelectronics ecosystem. HKSTP has established an extensive network of microelectronics hardware infrastructure, including Sensor Packaging and Integration Laboratory (Sensor Lab), Heterogenous Integration Lab (HI Lab) and the Hardware Lab. These facilities can support the end-to-end process of design, prototyping and the pilot production of chip-related equipment and systems as well as products. The Microelectronics Centre (MEC) in Yuen Long InnoPark is set to begin operation in 2024, supporting HKSTP’s infrastructure to accelerate microelectronics R&D pilot production, creating opportunities for upstream and downstream enterprises in the industry chain.
HKSTP’s has a vibrant microelectronics ecosystem, with over 200 microelectronics-related companies. Black Sesame Technologies’ landing in Hong Kong will generate greater synergy and technology exchange. Currently, five universities in Hong Kong are ranked among the top 100 universities in the world, with more than 100 university researchers engaged in microelectronics research, enabling Hong Kong to nurture top talent and expertise to drive R&D in high-end chips and semiconductors.
Photo 1: HKSTP and Black Sesame Technologies signed a Memorandum of Understanding to establish the “Black Sesame Hong Kong Technology Innovation R&D Center” at the Hong Kong Science Park, jointly developing an automotive-grade, high-end, intelligent vehicle chip platform to stimulate the growth of Hong Kong's automotive chip industry and enhance its microelectronics ecosystem.
Photo 2: Professor Sun Dong, Secretary for Innovation, Technology and Industry, said that new energy and intelligent vehicle enterprises will accelerate the technological innovation and upgrading in Hong Kong, attract more I&T and R&D talents from Mainland and overseas to Hong Kong, and help build up the professional knowledge and skills of local talents.”
Photo 3: Mr Albert Wong, CEO of HKSTP, said that HKSTP will work closely with Black Sesame Technologies to propel the growth of Hong Kong's high-end chip industry and foster strong ties with other companies, universities, and R&D institutions to grow and attract more talent in microelectronics.
Photo 4: Mr Johnson Shan, Founder and CEO of Black Sesame International Holding Limited, said that Black Sesame Technologies will join forces with HKSTP to fulfil Hong Kong’s innovation and technology objectives and contribute to developing China's intelligent vehicle industry.