Lenovo is set to establish its research and development center in Hong Kong, choosing the city's Cyberport as the base for this new facility targeted to advance the company's new cloud computing products and services.

The world's biggest supplier of personal computers is the latest in the list of prominent tenants at Hong Kong's premier technology complex. The R&D will focus on in-depth studies in two areas, specifically big data and enterprise-level cloud services infrastructure platform.

Lenovo and Cyberport on Tuesday also signed a memorandum of understanding to collaborate on various cloud development initiatives, including helping emerging start-ups and cultivating talents from local universities.

"Hong Kong has become our financial center and our Asia Pacific hub, connecting Lenovo to the international market," said Yang Yuanqing, chairman and CEO, Lenovo. He added that the company is looking to forge multiple collaborations not only to advance its cloud services, but to support the city's high-tech startups through LeFund--the $US100 million investment fund the computer giant set up in 2010.

Yang also mentioned Lenovo plans to set up its Asia Pacific data center in Hong Kong to support new enterprise cloud services across the globe. But no further details were shared.

Enabling HK's cloud ecosystem

With its new cloud service R&D center in Hong Kong, Yuangqing is optimistic that Lenovo can achieve a top three spot in the competitive server business.

Last year, Lenovo completed the acquisition of IBM's x86 server business, which he estimated will bring the company US$5 billion in additional global revenue company a year. The server line is designed for deployment in the world's growing cloud-computing infrastructure.

Herman Lam, Cyberport CEO, welcomed this latest partnership with Lenovo saying that it will help create a dynamic ecosystem for cloud computing in Hong Kong.

"We have work together with leaders in the industry to develop in this area. Lenovo can leverage Cyberport's vibrant technology start-up network," Lam said.

New energy for innovation

Lenovo's new cloud R&D center in Hong Kong is also expected to usher in a "new energy for innovation," according to Tian Rihui, vice president of Lenovo Group.

"Cloud computing is a disruptive technology, but it also provides a good platform for us to best serve the increasing needs of enterprise businesses," he said.

Rihui pointed out the quality of education and the city's geographical advantage as a gateway to the international business are the reasons why Lenovo has chosen Hong Kong as the base of its cloud computing products and services development.

"Talent is the foundation for asset development," added Patrick Yue, associate provost for knowledge transfer at Hong Kong University of Science and Technology. "This collaboration between Lenovo and Cyberport offers precious research opportunities for local university students, many of whom have to go overseas for their internships."

Hong Kong's professional workforce is also a factor that draws Shenzhen-based mobile games publishing platform iDreamSky to set up its financial operation locally, according to its CEO Michael Chen. The company is also an investee from Lenovo's LeFund.

"Hong Kong employees have a strong sense of responsibility. This lowers certain operational risks. Hong Kong has one of the most stringent standards for risk management," he concluded.