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Chinese innovators make waves at Expand North Star 2024 roadshow, set to shine in Dubai

The roadshows are a precursor to larger opportunities set to unfold in the next 12–18 months.

From May 13 to 17, the Expand North Star (ENS) 2024 roadshows, organized by the Dubai Chamber of Digital Economy, took place in Beijing, Shenzhen, and Shanghai. These bustling cities witnessed a confluence of innovation as China, a giant in the global tech ecosystem, connected its brightest minds with emerging opportunities in the UAE and beyond. The events provided a vibrant platform for Chinese companies to showcase their brands, technology, and solutions to a worldwide audience.

This October, several Chinese companies that participated in the roadshows will also attend the flagship edition of ENS 2024, a premier event for startups and investors, in Dubai, with all expenses covered. Additionally, GITEX Europe will take place in Berlin next year, inviting various Chinese startups to participate.

UAE and China’s symbiotic relationship

Synergy between the UAE and China has been strengthening over the past few years. During the Dubai Business Forum in November 2023, Richard Soundardjee, CEO for UAE and Egypt at China International Capital Corporation (CICC), highlighted the benefits of the two nations’ growing relationship. “The UAE is top of the list for Chinese investors owing to the dynamism and diversification of this market. The region is becoming a platform for international expansion for many of our Asian clients,” Soundardjee said, capturing the essence of this strategic partnership.

Indeed, a significant number of Chinese tech startups are aligning with the UAE’s digital economy vision, enhancing the Middle Eastern market’s allure. The UAE’s reputation as a global innovation hub, its friendly business environment, and close economic ties with China make it a vital gateway for startups aiming for global expansion. Accordingly, ENS offers a crucial platform for Chinese entrepreneurs to connect with international investors, industry leaders, and potential partners, propelling their global growth.

Despite being held locally, the ENS roadshow brought substantial resources to the participants. Several companies stood out:

  • Quantum computing company Miqro Era leveraged its participation in the Shanghai roadshow to establish critical contacts within the Dubai Chamber, paving the way for its market entry into the Middle East.
  • Molecular diagnostics company FlashDx and exoskeleton robot developer RoboCT showcased their excellent technology and innovation capabilities at the Shanghai roadshow, earning spots at GITEX Europe 2025 in Berlin and ENS 2024 in Dubai, respectively. FlashDx, a portfolio company of Fosun Capital, also advanced to the semifinals of the Supernova Challenge, an inter-regional pitch competition.
  • Assisted reproductive and automation equipment provider Biorocks Biotechnology and insect protein company Inspro Science won top prizes at the Shenzhen roadshow, earning participation in ENS 2024 and GITEX Europe 2025, respectively.
  • In Beijing, edge computing company Phenomenon Array (also known as Novnet) and glucose monitoring company Top Bio-technology (TopBio) performed exceptionally, gaining opportunities to attend events in Berlin and Dubai.

These selections underscore the depth of innovation within China’s tech sector and the strategic importance of platforms like GITEX and ENS in fostering international growth and collaboration. Both events have demonstrated their capability in building bridges between Chinese innovation and international markets, promoting global cooperation and development for Chinese companies.

“The enthusiasm and ingenuity displayed by the Chinese startups during our roadshows in Beijing, Shenzhen, and Shanghai have been truly inspiring. We are excited to see how these innovators will shape the future of the digital economy, both in the UAE and globally. Expand North Star 2024 will undoubtedly be enriched by their participation, further solidifying Dubai’s role as a global tech nexus,” said Saeed Al Gergawi, vice president of the Dubai Chamber of Digital Economy.

Source: Kr-ASIA