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A worldly city that helps global talents succeed

“There are very few places that combine all of the elements you need from a personal and professional perspective to launch your business, but also to live a quality personal life, like Hong Kong.”

Shervin Sharghy
CEO & Founder, EcoBricks Limited

A supportive business environment, vibrant expat community and great lifestyle options make Hong Kong a great destination to embark on an international career.

Shervin Sharghy is the CEO and founder of EcoBricks, which transforms waste plastic into high-quality concrete building materials. Sharghy previously worked in Hong Kong and chose to return in 2018 from London to start his company here. He developed an interest in the Asian business environment based on his experience of Hong Kong as a more vibrant and fast-paced business community with many opportunities to offer.

His passion for environmental protection and sustainability, alongside his desire to run his own business, spurred him to take the leap from investment banking to creating a solution to Asia’s plastic waste crisis. 

Primed for global talent to grow

As an entrepreneur, Sharghy was amazed by how easy it was to start a business in Hong Kong. The existing support services enabled him to focus on growing his enterprise rather than worrying about the many aspects of setting it up. Not only that, the HKSAR government further supports start-ups with networking, grants and incubation schemes from both the public and private sector. A lot of large companies have incubation schemes for young businesses that enable them to integrate not only with that company but across its industry.

It wasn’t just Hong Kong’s extremely business-friendly environment that attracted Sharghy.  He says, “What surprised me was the expat community treats you like a member of a very large family.  The degree to which people were willing to help me settle in, connect to the right people and find opportunities was the biggest surprise. It helps you find opportunities faster than you would somewhere else.”

Throughout all the critical stages of establishing his business, Sharghy also discovered that finding and connecting to the right people was immensely simple in Hong Kong. He was pleasantly taken aback by how people were ready to give him a meeting and hear his idea—a very rare circumstance to find as an entrepreneur.

Primed for business to achieve

Like all companies, EcoBricks is looking to expand. Now in the prototype phase of its products, EcoBricks hopes to grow not just in Hong Kong but across Asia. It’s excited to expand its manufacturing facilities with robotics, smart technologies and extensive data capture. The breadth of opportunities on hand require a commensurate amount of talent to realise.

In this case, Hong Kong’s world-class universities and vocational training institutions continue to offer a strong pool of talent. EcoBricks has partnered with some of these local institutions to tap the burgeoning cohort of young workers, many who are keen to join a start-up where they can help shape and drive the business. For more experienced talent, Sharghy expects the company will have to look outside Hong Kong. He believes the city will be an attractive destination for professionals and recruiting from overseas should not be a problem. It is not just because Hong Kong is a hub for the world’s biggest companies. A family-friendly environment, great commuting options and a plethora of work-life balance options also help.

Personally, there was a new addition to the Sharghys as his wife gave birth to a baby girl in December 2020. Overwhelmed by the joy and happiness brought by the new member, Sharghy was equally impressed by the sophisticated healthcare system in Hong Kong, which he believes is very much on par with the National Health Service and private healthcare system of the U.K. His wife and their daughter received the best care possible by the city’s highly professional medical workers.

For anyone looking to develop a career or start a business in Hong Kong, Sharghy encourages them to get in touch with agencies such as InvestHK. He adds, “Entrepreneurs should not be afraid to reach out and ask simple questions.  Their desire to bring talent and businesses here to Hong Kong is really, really strong. You don’t have to do everything yourself.”

Fast facts:

  • CEO & Founder Shervin Sharghy is a British national. He studied law and started his career as an investment banker. He previously worked in Hong Kong and chose to return in 2018 to start his company here.
  • Sharghy founded his eco business in 2020, attracted by Hong Kong’s focus on sustainable business development, vibrant expat community, business-friendly environment and ease of setting up businesses. 
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