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Towngas signs RISC-V chip deal and China Mobile announces capital and innovation outpost in boost for Hong Kong’s tech sector

“[The government] is committed to developing Hong Kong as a global innovation and technology hub, with an emphasis on promoting cooperation between the government and the industry, academic and research sectors,” Financial Secretary Paul Chan Mo-po said in a statement welcoming China Mobile’s CTC and research institute.

StarFive will collaborate with xFusion on the development and industrialisation of a RISC-V chip, nicknamed the “Lion Rock Chip”, which will be tailored for data centre environments and will be integrated into xFusion’s intelligent computing products, enhancing their service capabilities. XFusion will, in turn, strengthen Towngas’s capabilities in cloud computing, memory computing and other areas, as part of efforts to bolster its competitive edge.

Dr Peter Lee Ka-kit, the chairman of Towngas and founder of Full Vision Capital. Photo: Handout

“Towngas aims to leverage xFusion’s computing infrastructure and services to propel the intelligent and green transformation of the energy industry,” Dr Peter Lee Ka-kit, Towngas’s chairman and founder of Full Vision Capital, said at the signing of a strategic cooperation agreement between the firms on Friday.

“By aligning with the high-quality national development of computing infrastructure, we are committed to driving the digital transformation of industries in Hong Kong.”

RISC-V is an open-standard instruction set architecture that gives chip developers the ability to configure and customise their designs. By 2030, the semiconductor industry is projected to exceed US$1 trillion globally, Lee said.

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There is no timeline yet for the laboratory’s opening. The companies said they hoped to start production as early as next year. The production will, however, not take place in Hong Kong, they added.

“By leveraging our cutting-edge RISC-V core technology, StarFive can develop the most suitable products for data centre environments, fully harnessing our vertical integration advantages,” said Thomas Xu Tao, StarFive’s chairman and CEO. The Shanghai-based company has been incubated by Full Vision, Lee’s family office.

“We welcome more partners to join us in forming a strong alliance to collectively build a thriving ecosystem for RISC-V technology in the data centre domain.”


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The collaboration with Towngas allows xFusion to enter the Hong Kong market and contribute to digital transformation efforts, said Jeffery Liu Hongyun, Zhengzhou-based xFusion’s chairman and CEO.

“Together, we aim to cultivate a favourable industry ecosystem, promote synergistic development along the industry value chain, and deliver quality computing services to everyone,” he added.

Elsewhere, China Mobile said it had invested more than HK$30 billion (US$3.8 billion) in Hong Kong in recent years and hoped to lift its status as a global telecommunications hub.

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The CTC will serve as China Mobile’s overseas treasury platform, which will use Hong Kong as a global hub to manage overseas capital management, services and operations, opening up capital channels within and outside China, and managing overseas capital risk.

The research institute will focus on 6G network development, new-generation mobile communications and artificial intelligence, with the overall goal of developing Hong Kong as an innovation and technology centre.

“Hong Kong has the unique advantage of being a breeding ground of innovation and a premium global financial centre,” said Yang Jie, China Mobile’s chairman.

“[It] has the distinctive advantages of enjoying strong support of the motherland and being closely connected to the world.”

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