Five Business Industries to Avoid for Startups in Hong Kong

6 min read|Last Updated: September 13, 2021|

Elements to consider before launching a startup

Before considering any industry, it is advisable to consider the possibility of being successful. Some of the things that you should consider before launching a startup are:

  • Is the industry feasible?
    The viability here implies that the business you are about to start should be able to withstand the market challenges. The problems you may encounter during the first stage of your business are market penetration, the relevance of the product or service in the current economy, and the people’s demands. The going concern includes the ability to withstand, and the unique selling point of the service or product that you are about to come up with.
  • Location
    Every market has its expectations and demands. Authenticity is key when it comes to doing business. Anyone interested in doing business should focus on solving an existing problem where they are.Borrowing an idea from elsewhere and implementing it in a different location is a bad idea. When you borrow an idea from one place and attempt to implement it in another region, that investment is more likely to fail. Therefore, the initial step to starting a business is finding a gap and attempting to solve the problem through the services or products you are about to start. Thus, running background research on the geographical location you are about to erect your business is important if you are about to start a business.
  • The level of competition in the Industry
    Some industries are overcrowded with pioneers. Thus, it will be hard for you to penetrate the market. Therefore, it is vital to ensure that the industry or business that you are about to consider will eventually bring back the amount invested.However, uniqueness can overcome the crowded business. If you are planning to venture into an already crowded market, make sure your idea/product/service is unique and outstanding. With this, you are more likely to succeed.

    On the other hand, going into a business without knowing your competitors, what they are doing, and how you are planning to outsmart them is more likely to lead to failure of the business. Investment requires creativity and innovation. Upon analyzing your competitors and their weaknesses and strengths, you will likely succeed if you strike on their weak points and maximize on how to make your services unique. Such will include marketing strategies and pricing.

  • Capital
    Capital required in any business venture or industry is significant. The amount of capital that a business requires will determine if you will be successful or not. Having a working plan will help you budget and venture only in business that you can manage and operate. Proper management and operation require sufficient funds, which implies that you must engage in business that you can comfortably operate with your current financial position. The best way to ensure that you meet all the requirements is to get a professionally customized business plan from our consulting company to enable you to run and operate your business professionally.

These are but just some few factors that you should consider before engaging in any business. To get an up to date essential factors to consider when about to commence a business, then you are supposed to consult on the factors that are more likely to influence the operations and determinants of such business. However, this will help you point some business that you should not consider investing in now.

5 worst industries for startups in Hong Kong

  1. Travel Agencies
    The business of putting up a physical store for running a travel agency in Hong Kong is as archaic as it gets. If you are planning to start this business, then take a break and slap yourself in the face to wake up. The major problem in this industry is the prevalence of the Internet. From air-tickets, hotel booking to attraction tickets, anything that a Hong Konger needs to acquire for the travel arrangements is available online. It is very hard for a travel agency to survive in Hong Kong nowadays.
  2. Social Sites and Search Engines
    If you are thinking of following the footsteps of Zuckerberg or Gates, then you should think again. With the current high number of social sites, it isn’t easy to penetrate the market unless your service is unique relative to those already in use. With famous social sites like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, people do not need the same social sites if they have no added unique features or benefits. It is advised that you stay away from industries with firmly erected barriers that will give you sleepless nights trying to market. However, if you are significantly funded, then you can try your luck by facing these giant social sites.Since Microsoft, Facebook, and Google are already deeply rooted and with a significant market share, you should consider coming up with something that is relatively complementing them and not competing with them. It is also essential to know who the industry’s main players are before setting a company within the industry.
  3. Café Business
    Starting this business seemed luxurious and trendy in the past few years. From the on-lookers’ perspective, the business seems profitable by selling a single cappuccino at $12eggs benedict at around 8$. These may make it easy for someone to overlook the expenses that are involved in this business. Some real challenges here are high rental prices within prestigious areas, especially in Hong Kong. The rental cost can be as high as $20,000 per month in Hong Kong. Besides, you might be required to pay for at least 6 months upfront to secure the business space. Thus, you might end up spending as much as $ 100,000 to the landlord before setting up your business. Other expenses on top of this are employees’ wages and the cost of renovation. It is a business that required a solid cash flow. A startup with limited startup fund should avoid this industry in Hong Kong.
  4. Website Design
    This is usually practiced by those who have IT skills. Designing a single website might earn you as high as $3000. That is good, and most people would rush into the business without giving it a second thought. However, the challenge here is that completing a single website can last for six months to a year. It can take that long as the client would always need a feature on their website. Besides, you are likely to get pressured by the clients who can call at any time to have a change made to their websites. Thus, this industry can be over engaging, thus requiring those who understand the dynamics and ready to sacrifice their fun for work.
  5. Direct Selling
    Irrespective of whatever investment you are about to make, it advisable that you first have an online presence. Having a physical location for making direct sales to consumers is somehow outdated. Many people prefer checking for a product or service online before making their minds on what to spend on. Some of the things people are interested in are the cost, features, and benefits of the product or service. Therefore, it is important to have an online presence compared to the traditional physical office for selling to the clients.



In summary, starting a business requires that one runs background research before investing. We offer professional consulting services that will enable you to start a business that has a future and within your financial budget.

Five Business Industries to Avoid for Startups in Hong Kong FAQs

Which are the 5 worst industries for start-ups in Hong Kong?2020-11-26T06:40:07+00:00

The 5 worst industries for start-ups in Hong Kong are Travel agencies, Café business, Web designing, social sites, and direct selling. 

How much do I need to start a company in Hong Kong?2020-11-26T06:39:51+00:00

The minimum amount of capital required to start a business in Hong Kong is 1 HKD.  

Which industries should I consider for start-up in Hong Kong?2020-11-26T06:39:31+00:00

Hong Kong is currently working towards improving its technology. Therefore, as a start-up, you should consider the innovation industry and other techrelated industriesOtherwise, business consultant, and professional services like accounting, law, tutoring, are good startup options in Hong Kong too. 

What can make an industry bad for start-up in Hong Kong?2020-11-26T06:38:25+00:00

Some of the factors that might make an industry bad for start-up are huge amount of capitalcompetition, and difficulty in penetrating the market. 

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