Shopline’s Raymond Yip Gives an Update on ‘500 Startups’ and Cyberport’s Recent Delegation to the US

Back in August, we congratulated DIY eCommerce startup Shopline on their acceptance into 500 Startups. It was kind of like watching your kid go off to college.

In just a few months, the one-year-old startup has grown a lot under the care of the Silicon Valley accelerator. Besides adding two senior engineers and one marketing person to their team, Shopline has also been in talks to raise a round of funding from Hong Kong, US and Southeast Asian investors.

We had a caught up with co-founder and CEO Raymond Yip and he said that one of the biggest benefits to accelerating with 500 Startups is having access to a large mentor network. “There are 250-300 advisors and people within the 500 network come in and out every week for office hours. They’ll teach you things like design, tech or legal – you name it, someone’s going to help you out,” said Yip.

And it’s not just mentors lending a hand at 500. As 30% of the cohort is made up of international startups, Yip said there’s been a strong sharing culture within the program. On many occasions, fellow batchmates have come up to Yip’s desk offering help on a problem, and he said that this is an area that Hong Kong’s startup community can improve on.

“There needs to be a fostering of startups that support each other. Some of the spaces in Hong Kong where startups gather, it doesn’t give that sense of support – I think the culture needs to grow up a bit in Hong Kong.” According to Yip, one way to start nurturing this culture is for successful entrepreneurs to move into more active mentorship roles.


As Hong Kong’s startup scene has just entered its adolescence, a lot can be gained learning from established ecosystems such as Silicon Valley. In a recent Cyberport-led delegation to the US, a group of Hong Kong startups (including Notey, GoGoVan and Ambi) attended TechCrunch Disrupt and paid a visit to the 500 Startups office. The trip was meant to bridge connections between Hong Kong and the US, and to make our startups aware of overseas resources.

“It’s the Valley so you learn things from a different perspective, and it’s a great experience for Hong Kong startups to see how the culture is like in Silicon Valley,” he said. “For Hong Kong startups to be exposed to this is extremely valuable, and I want to encourage other startups to apply – whether to Y-Combinator, 500 Startups or TechStars.”

Since Shopline is an Asian startup focused on the regional market, Yip and his team plans on bringing as many tricks of the Silicon Valley trade back to Hong Kong’s ecosystem. We’ll check in with Shopline upon their return.

More photos from the ‘Cyberport Delegation to the US’:

© StartupsHK. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit AND link of actual article is given to StartupsHK with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.