China swaps sweatshops for smart tech in bid to reclaim lost ground

Manufacturers also acquiring established brands overseas in push to move up the value chain. “Many former Chinese manufacturers already started to develop their own brands 15 years ago and some have become real global innovators.” “It’s a big market opportunity for foreign firms to offer their advanced technologies to Chinese companies. However, foreign companies should be aware that Chinese companies are catching up and becoming real innovators.”

Read more: South China Morning Post

Alibaba’s growth frenzy

While Alibaba’s growth from an apartment-sized company in 1999 to a company with the largest IPO value in American history in 2014 can only be high-velocity, founder Jack Ma’s taste for speed is relentless. Since early 2012 Alibaba Group has shifted gears and moved from organic growth and partnerships to high-speed growth by M&As in complementary technology fields. It has been expanding in finance, healthcare, travel and even movie making. Alibaba has become one of the most signficant tech investors in China.

Read more: CASE – Expanding by acquiring and CASE – Pioneer in China’s Internet financial service

Feedback on “Creativity, Innovation & Entrepreneurship” course

Lars H. is a current student of the Global Entrepreneurship Program. While attending classes at Zhejiang University he took a course called “Creativity, Innovation & Entrepreneurship” taught my Mark Greeven, Associate Professor in Innovation & Entrepreneurshipat Zhejiang University. See what Lars thought about this course.

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Interview with the Global Entrepreneurship Program

Students of the Global Entrepreneurship Program spend their second semester studying entrepreneurship at Zhejiang University School of Management in China, one of the top Universities in China. Mark Greeven, Director of the Global Entrepreneurship Program on behalf of Zhejiang University is an expert in entrepreneurship in China, having researched the topic for the past 11 years starting with his PhD project focusing on Chinese private enterprise at Rotterdam School of Management. We caught up with Mark about how the Global Entrepreneurship Program is unique in its approach to entrepreneurship education, the benefits of studying entrepreneurship at one of the top Universities in China, how students of the program develop after studying and working across 3 continents and how students can learn to be entrepreneurs both inside and outside the classroom.

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Many Chinese entrepreneurs have set foot in the Netherlands

When Vivat (from brands such as SNS Reaal and Zwitserleven) announced it has agreed with a takeover by Anbang, most people never heard of this illustrious and cash-rich Chinese company, let alone the founder Xiaohui Wu, who founded the company only 11 years ago. Telecom giant Huawei, car maker BYD, insurance software developer eBaotech, and diary producer Yili are among the many that have set foot in the Dutch market. Many of the overseas Chinese companies are not state-owned but privately owned, founded and run by star entrepreneurs, who gain celebrity status in China.

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Changing China’s Innovation Ecosystem?

A sustainable economic development of China depends on innovation. Moving from an unsustainable export- and investment-led growth towards sustainable economic development based on domestic consumption requires catching up in terms of productivity and living conditions. The Chinese government is well aware of the fact that the ecosystem for innovation in China is still immature and in need of significant changes. Well before the Communist Party’s Third Plenum in November 2013, the “National medium- and long-term plan for the development of science and technology (2006-2020)”, issued by the State Council, outlined China’s broad ambition to enhance innovation with around 100 supporting policies and the goal to increase R&D spending to $113 billion by 2020. The Third Plenum addressed the issues around creating a favorable environment for innovation in four main ways.

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Alibaba leads a wave of global Chinese companies

Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba has a track record of breaking records. It not only operates the world’s largest online business-to-business platform, but also the world’s largest online consumer marketplace. In 2004, it had the largest initial public offering (IPO) since Google on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange. In 2014, Alibaba had the biggest IPO in US history with its debut on the New York Stock Exchange on 19 September. Its founder Jack Ma — the first mainland Chinese to appear on the cover of Forbes magazine — and his core team have, in just 15 years, built a Chinese private company that is a global force to be reckoned with. Jack Ma is not the only Chinese entrepreneur with potential and the world may need to prepare for a wave of global Chinese companies.

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