Startup Weekend Grey is the New Black

    Friday, August 31 - September 2, 2018

  1. Overview
  2. Schedule
  3. Judges
  4. Coaches and Mentors
  5. Sponsors
  6. Organizing Team
  7. Blog
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Startup Weekend Grey is the New Black

Friday, August 31 - September 2, 2018

Friday, August 31 - September 2, 2018
Event starts at 6:30 pm

20/F Vertical Sq., 28 Heung Yip Road
Wong Chuk Hang
Hong Kong, Hong Kong

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A weekend of demonstrating what can happen when the young and old join forces for change

This is a call for you to get your idea off the ground by partnering with like-minded entrepreneurs from different generations. Startup Weekend Grey is the New Black is your chance to collaborate and get involved with a group of motivated individuals who are hell-bent on solving Hong Kong’s problems by combining expertise with drive, experience with passion and wisdom with instinct. The event is aimed at entrepreneurs aged between 16 and 30 years and 50+ years.

What is a Startup Weekend?
Startup Weekends are all about learning through the act of creating. This global grassroots movement of active and empowered community leaders and entrepreneurs from a variety of backgrounds are learning the basics of founding startups and launching successful ventures. Participants with varying specialities come together to share ideas, form teams and launch startups from the bottom up.

What’s different about this event?
This Startup Weekend is designed to demonstrate the power of bridging generations with the old working together with the young, setting aside centuries of bias to create sustainable positive impact. The weekend will be focused on letting innovators of all ages form teams to solve the most pressing problems in Hong Kong. It will be one of the first Startup Weekends globally dedicated to bridging generations for social good.

This is the oldest the world has ever been. There are more people aged 50 and over today than 5 and under.  Hong Kong too is rapidly ageing with over 30% of the population set to be over 65 in just fifteen years! Yet, age discrimination is still rampant and people question whether different generations can be motivated to work together. Here’s an opportunity to change the way people think about older people and how they can add value to businesses and communities.

So how does it work?
The concept is simple: participants pitch their startup idea and receive feedback from their peers. Mixed age teams will organically form around the top ideas followed by a 54-hour frenzy of business model creation, coding, designing, and market validation. The weekend culminates with presentations in front of local entrepreneurial leaders providing another opportunity for critical feedback before a final winning team is chosen.

Why should I participate?
Whether entrepreneurs find co-founders, meet someone new, or learn a skill far outside of your usual 9-to-5  job, everyone is guaranteed to leave the event better prepared to navigate the chaotic but fun world of startups.

About AXA Foundation
AXA Foundation is established by AXA Hong Kong. With the purpose “Empower People to Live a Better Life” in mind, it pledges to support various programmes related to health and education in town.  Through supporting different charities, AXA Foundation is committed to serve all walks of life in the community in order to contribute to the sustainability of the society. AXA Foundation is dedicated to help the needy, so that everyone can be empowered to enjoy a stable and prosperous life.

Still have questions? Feel free to reach out to Belinda Esterhammer at


Friday August 31st

6:30 pm
Arrive at the venue and get checked in

7:00 pm
Dinner & Networking
Eat food, share ideas, practice pitches, get to know fellow participants

7:20 pm
Welcome & Speakers
Review agenda for the weekend and introduce speakers, coaches, and community leaders

7:30 pm
Pitches Start
Optionally line up to give your pitch

9:00 pm
Attendees vote for the top pitches

9:15 pm
Form Teams and Start Work
Teams start forming and discussing ideas. Start to formalize teams and take an inventory of skills. Be honest, and direct about what resources and skills are needed for the weekend.

9:30 pm
Venue Closes

Saturday September 1st

9:00 am
Arrive, simple breakfast & coffee

9:30 am
Begin Work
Teams formed and setting up workspace for the weekend

12:00 pm

1:00 pm
After-lunch check-in, status reports, call for help

2:00 pm
Coach Meetings
Coaches help teams one-on-one. They are here to help!

6:30 pm

7:30 pm
After-dinner check-in, status reports, call for help

9:00 pm
Venue Closes.

Sunday September 2nd

9:00 am
Arrive, simple breakfast & coffee

10:00 am
Coaches arrive. Final opportunity to ask questions

12:00 pm

3:00 pm
Presentation Prep & Tech Check
Final hours of worktime should be focused on perfecting your presentation, tech-check for final presentations also takes place

4:00 pm

5:00 pm
Final Presentations

7:30 pm
Judging & Awards

8:30 pm

9:00 pm
Go Home!

Event Judges

Andrea Wong
Chief Marketing and Customer Officer, AXA Hong Kong

Andrea Wong is the Chief Marketing and Customer Officer cum Chief Corporate Responsibility Officer of AXA Hong Kong. Andrea joined AXA in 2002 and since then has held a number of key roles within AXA, including Regional Head of Bancassurance, Head of Customer Strategy and Strategic Marketing, Director for Winterthur Integration and Head of AXA Advisers. Prior to joining AXA, Andrea worked for KPMG where she was responsible for the marketing and delivery of consulting services in the Asia Pacific region, focusing mainly on multinational financial services institutions. 

Andrea has over 20 years of experience in the insurance and finance sector. She started her career in banking, initially as a Management Associate at Citibank. During her career at Citibank she built up extensive experience in the areas of marketing, customer management and telemarketing. 

Karena Belin

Karena co-founded W Hub out of Passion and Admiration for the Entrepreneurial spirit and the conviction that too many Talent is under-leveraged. It was time to make a difference, to help the Startup Ecosystem open up and grow and give Talent access to a job they really care about.
Originally from Germany, Karena has worked over 14 years for Procter & Gamble in leading roles in Finance, Sales, Business Planning and Management across Germany, France, North East Asia and Greater China.
Her experience spans over areas such as controlling, product launches, portfolio management, strategic business planning, organisation re-design, competitive intelligence and negotiations.
Karena is also very passionate about driving diversity and inclusion and as such active as SVP of Business Development and Communications at WoW (Women on the Way-up) of the American Women Association in Hong Kong. And she loves being involved in her daughters’ school as VP of Events in the Parent Faculty Organisation of the Hong Kong International School (HKIS).

Tim Wu
Programme Director - Eureka Nova Startup Incubator

Tim Wu is Advisory Board Member and Programme Director of New World Group’s Startup Incubator Eureka Nova. He is a China Consultant to Li & Fung China Development Ltd, Executive Director of Caring for Children Foundation and Director of Healthy Hong Kong Foundation.

Coaches and Mentors

Nicole Denholder
Founder & CEO, Next Chapter Ventures

Nicole Denholder is the founder and CEO of Next Chapter.

Next Chapter launched in late 2015, and is a funding portal especially for female entrepreneurs and women-owned businesses in Asia, to improve their access to funding. It’s first service is a rewards-based crowdfunding platform that supports entrepreneurs wanting to raise funds, create market buzz and validate their business ideas.

Nicole previously worked at PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) in London and Hong Kong in PwC’s US IPO and Advisory practices working on large scale projects across Europe and Asia.

Nicole is passionate about female entrepreneurship, and changing the way the funding system works so that the world benefits more from the talent and wisdom of women.

Margaret Yeung
Global Brand Strategist, Kalli Strategic Marketing

I have over 24 years experience working with luxury, high net worth and luxury, hospitality, and global brand clients. I am skilled in external and internal communications, corporate strategy, CRM/ loyalty, business development, digital, event management and CSR corporate social responsibility. 

Eric Byron
Program Facilitator

More than 25 years of business and leadership experience in Information Systems and Technology

International experience working in Asia for almost 6 years and has direct experience working with large multination companies like Disney and EA, and is currently working with multiple tech startups in Hong Kong

Fyiona Yong
Founder and Director - Wholistic Coachsulting Ltd.

Fyiona is one of the youngest certified coaches in Hong Kong and Asia (ICF ACC), a key note speaker on multi-generational inclusion and a trainer for corporate, NGOs and business schools in Asia. Her professional background, while diverse, isn’t traditional: Within 14 years in a Fortune 50 company, she took on leadership roles from Finance, Digital Transformation to Operations in Germany, UK and Hong Kong. 
Now, she passionately supports leaders in creating effective and engaged multi-generational teams who embrace diversity and inclusion, as well as coaches young talents to become inspiring future leaders. 

Amy Yeung
Founder & Coach, Inside Out Action 雞毛掃行動

Amy's passion for sustainability blends with her coaching skills and over 12 years experience in business management with major global investment banks in the Asia Pacific Region. Actively involved with both private and not for profit sectors and with more than 20 years of China experience, Amy had also worked in Singapore, Tokyo and Zurich and established effective relationships with professionals in Europe, US and Asia Pacific.

Stuart Mackenzie
Senior Consultant at ERM: Environmental Resources Management

I am a Senior Consultant in the ERM Hong Kong office working on a range of Waste Management, Sustainable Finance and Environmental and Social Due Diligence projects throughout Asia. I have undertaken projects in Hong Kong, Mongolia, Malaysia, China and the Philippines. I also co-ordinate the ERM Foundation for the Hong Kong Office; ERM donates 1% of profits globally to projects that address the following sustainability issues Low carbon development; Conservation and biodiversity; Water, sanitation and hygiene; Environmental education; and Empowering women and girls.

Vince Siu

Currently on an exhilarating journey exploring the world through games and unlocking the potential of games with Press Start Hong Kong, and leading the Greater China expansion for Level Up Village, an exciting ed-tech startup with a mission to globalize the classroom via pioneering Global STEAM curricula.

Event Sponsors, and Partners

The Startup Weekend Grey is the New Black team is grateful for the support of local community partners without whom this event would not be possible.
Learn how to become a sponsor here.


Event Partner

Organizing Team

Techstars Startup Weekend Hong Kong is 100% led by volunteer community leaders.
Learn how to get involved here

  • Belinda
  • Priyanka
  • Felix


Belinda Esterhammer
Founder and Director - Springboard Group

I am a tech enthusiast and digital marketing specialist with international experience. Prior starting Springboard Group - a marketing agency, I led high-profile digital marketing campaigns for EY’s female entrepreneur program in Hong Kong. I have worked in marketing and communications across many sectors including time at UNICEF in the Philippines, an Austrian consultancy focused on governmental institutions, a German B2B and B2G IT company and the biggest online job platform in Spain. I’m a passionate advocate for female mentoring and founded the NextGen Women Network, sit on the committee of TEDxTinHauWomen and I’m also a steering committee member of the Asian University for Women. 

Event Staff

Bronze Leung
Operations Coordinator of Greater China, Techstars

Bronze Leung is the Operations Coordinator of Greater China, Techstars

Ana Perez
Digital Marketing Consultant

Ana found her passion and calling with Social Media analytics and is amazed by the possibilities of improving workflows, automatizing, cutting times but keeping the quality of the tasks. She brings plenty of energy, enthusiasm and motivation to any workplace.

Yvonne Chan
Aspiring Storyteller at naked Hub & Young Duke Alumna

A versatile and multilingual Marketing Professional with 4 years of experience in bringing products and brand to life. A proven track record of innovating and leading effective Marketing Campaigns in Beauty and Co-working industries. Excelled at 360 product launches, media and promotion planning, roadshows and large event management.

Divya Samtani
Head of Content and Partnerships - Mettā

Programmer, storyteller, and communications specialist, Divya has worked with some of the world’s largest financial and tech organizations, helping them to define their digital media and marketing strategies. She is currently Head of Content and Partnerships at Mettā where she focuses on the education and empowerment of the global innovation community.

Jeep Chang
Growth Hacker - Retired Not Out

Currently a student studying sociology from University of Essex, passionate at photography and singing. Interested at solving social problems relating to poverty and wealth, previously volunteered in multiple NGOs and always happy to help and support others.

Brianna Wing Lam Ng
Student, City University Hong Kong

Student, City University Hong Kong

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