HLX becomes Malaysia’s first innovation exchange


KUCHING: Hong Leong Group on Thursday announced the launch of its innovation exchange, the HLX, which aspires to grow the Malaysian tech start-up ecosystem with Malaysian Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC) as one of its strategic partners here at Menara HLA.

The HLX will be a one-stop facility which converges the corporate and start-up communities under one roof to accelerate innovation and boost the Malaysian start-up ecosystem. This 250,000sq ft exchange located in the heart of Kuala Lumpur will feature a start-up zone with co-working spaces, various event facilities including an auditorium, onsite Makers Lab, restaurants, and a gym.

This innovation incubator will be the focal point for collaborators vital to the growth of the ecosystem such as Venture Capitalists (VCs), mentoring and technology partners, tech start-ups/scaleups, and corporations. HLX is positioned to focus on the innovation of high technology with an initial focus on Artificial Intelligence (AI)/High Performance Computing (HPC), fintech, and manufacturing tech.

“With HLX, we are bringing together the corporates and start-ups in a unique two-way exchange to give further impetus Malaysia’s economy.

“On one hand, the start-ups will gain access to a complete innovation ecosystem that will accelerate their transformation, enable innovation and help them scale-up on the value chain, while the corporates will get to engage with start-ups in a more meaningful and sustainable manner,” said Mohd Reezan Mohd Fadzil, General Manager of HLX.

He mentioned that tech start-ups have great ideas and talent while corporations have the avenue where innovative technology can be deployed.

“That is where HLX comes in, by identifying the gaps and connecting the right match of services offered by key partners.”

This project is also a Private-Public Partnership (PPP) with MDEC who is springboarding HLX to be part of the digital economy ecosystem. The objective of this synergy is to accelerate innovation among the start-ups which will help propel the country’s digital transformation efforts in sectors such as manufacturing, agriculture, infrastructure, and services.

“To build a thriving entrepreneurial network may be a daunting task and that is why it has to be a collaborative effort,” said Surina Shukri, CEO of MDEC. “This partnership with HLX is a testament to the potential of what a PPP looks like and can one day achieve”.

On the talent front, the HLX Academy will be the exchange where capacity building takes place with future talents through training, mentoring and industry placements. This learning institution is partnering with technical experts like CXS, BAC Twistcode, and more, to lead certification and talent upskilling programmes.

The HLX Academy strives to build a pipeline of industry-ready innovators and creators, at the same time, matching their skillsets to key partners from corporations and the government.

Also present at the launch of the HLX innovation exchange was Minister of Communications and Multimedia Gobind Singh Deo who witnessed the exchange of six Memorandum of Understandings (MoUs) between HLX and tech and talent partners: Twistcode Technologies, Islamic Fintech Hub, Ficus Venture Capital and Helios Orion, BAC Education, 1337 Ventures and CXS.