Why Amazon didn’t make the cut in China

WHEN Amazon announced last week that it was giving up the e-commerce business in China, it wasn’t because of Chinese protectionism. Retail, after all, is almost the only sector where Beijing doesn’t favour the locals. LVMH, Prada, Gucci, Zara, H&M, Uniqlo all prosper. It’s a rare, relatively level playing field for foreign companies, a sector in which local competition must fight long and hard. It’s a place where mighty foreign Internet companies would have supposedly shown their innovative prowess and then achieved dominance in the world’s largest e-commerce market. But it’s a market where Amazon, the largest and most valuable retailer in the world, which has been heralded as the disruptor of many industries, decided to retreat. What happened?

Read more: The Business Times

[PODCAST] Lessons from China’s innovators

Chinese innovators are making their mark globally. What can leaders and entrepreneurs around the world learn from the innovation happening in this country? I joined The Emerging World of Work to discuss my new book, Pioneers, Hidden Champions, Changemakers, and Underdogs: Lessons from China’s Innovators.  In this podcast, we explain the four different types of innovators in China, the successes of Western companies that have tried to move into this market, and the lessons the rest of us can learn from China’s startup culture.

Read more: Emergn

{German} Langfristige Visionen kombiniert mit Unternehmergeist

Das Internet der Dinge für Anwendungen in der Industrie (Industrial-IoT) spielt bei der Umsetzung der ambitionierten Pläne für Chinas wirtschaftsentwicklung eine entscheidende Rolle. Die Regierung hat offentlich-private Partnerschaften als Innovationstreiber in diesem Bereich identifiziert und unterstützt diese engagiert, damit innovative Lösungen rasch in praktische Anwendungen münden.

Read more: ChinaContact (subscription required)

2019 Two sessions: Towards building a more mature innovation country

Compared with years past, innovation this year received less explicit attention in the Government Work Report during China’s annual two sessions. Every year I comment on the central government’s review and plans for the year, looking for the role that the government assign to innovation in upgrading the economy and society. While a decade ago it was a new concept in public discourse; now innovation has become a commonplace – perhaps over-used – term in China. To see less emphasis on innovation as a concept this year was both a surprise and relief.

Read more: China Daily

UAE to benefit from “digital Silk Road”

China has realized that the UAE is a crucial part of the Belt Road Initiative. I want to mention that because the Belt Road Initiative is a very important strategic, long-term initiative of the Chinese government. So, the UAE plays a very crucial role as a hub for the Middle East, Africa, and other parts of Asia. In the broader policy context, we have the big ecosystems like Alibaba that are massively investing in expanding their cloud services, payment services, smart logistics network, which are then going to land in places like the UAE. A lot of the innovations are coming from “changemakers” – companies that have consumer-oriented business models and are looking for markets outside of China. In such an environment, places like Southeast Asia and the Middle East are not necessarily the “lowest hanging fruit”, but are definitely the most likely candidates to attract them.

Read more: AMEInfo

Apple has made “strategic mistakes”

Huawei as a company – even compared to Oppo or Vivo in China – has an actual technological advantage. The hardcore capability in research and development is something that they built up over a decade. This makes their phones, their phone camera, the functioning device, a very good product. This is one component that helps Huawei eat into the Apple and Samsung market. Huawei has also been smart about where the company can go and find consumers for their products. They have gone to places that a lot of traditional players have not gone.

Read more: AMEInfo

China debt – Will it explode?

To some extent, China’s slowing economy is necessary. I think it’s kind of bizarre to have this high economic growth rate for 30 years. So, I think it makes some other sense. I think what’s happening is a controlled slow down. It makes little difference if the economic growth slows from 7 percent to 6 percent or 5 percent because the economy is still growing. People’s lives are getting better every year and the economy is expanding. The key problem would be if the economy starts shrinking, but it’s not – it’s still growing, but at a less rapid pace. This does mean that the pressure on Chinese companies inside China is getting bigger. They need to be more efficient; they need to be using their resources more effectively; they need to make sure that they go higher up in the value chain.

Read more: AMEInfo

Emerging Sino-foreign collaboration in IoT solutions

Public-private partnerships are paramount to the successful adoption of the industrial internet of things, or IIoT, solutions in China. In the aftermath of the Industrial Internet Consortium meeting in Beijing last November, our interaction with representatives of IIoT solutions providers suggest that the key to successful IIoT implementation is in collaborative approaches. While the available technology stack and actual use cases are important drivers for adoption, the partnership ecosystem and business models of deploying IIoT solutions are equally or more important.

Read More: China Daily

Understanding China’s next wave of innovation

Three types of emerging innovators in China are making it increasingly difficult for Western multinationals to compete. Thousands of innovative companies are quietly disrupting numerous industries, overtaking incumbents, and developing new products and new business models. For a variety of reasons we’ll discuss here, these emerging innovators are not easy to identify — yet they pose real threats, often in unexpected places.

Read More: MIT Sloan Management Review