The End of Copycat ChinaThe Rise of Creativity, Innovation, and Individualism in Asia
China's changing course, and sustainable success requires a shift in strategy The End of Copycat China helps business executives and investors understand how China's economy is shifting from one based on heavy investment to one on services and consumption by providing insight that help shape effective strategy. Drawing from over 50,000 interviews with entrepreneurs, venture capitalists, private equity investors, private Chinese companies, and multinationals, this book describes how Chinese firms are increasingly focused on innovation rather than copying what worked in America and how consumers are evolving with their hopes, dreams and aspirations. China's growth model of the last three decades is becoming increasingly ineffective, as relying on heavy investment and exports is becoming less and less feasible. Fifty percent of China's growth in 2013 stemmed from consumption, the government is establishing a Free Trade zone in Shanghai and ending the dominance of state-owned enterprises. This book provides a roadmap for companies and investors looking to navigate these changes and capture emerging trends, with deep insight and practical guidance on what innovation looks like in the new China. Survey the development of innovation taking place in China's economy, from an insider's perspective Consider the changes that must take place to shore up the broken growth model Examine the consumer trends emerging in the midst of rapid market evolution Understand how China's rise will impact its neighbors like Japan, Vietnam, Indonesia, and Cambodia China's dramatic shift toward consumption presents a tremendous opportunity for foreign business, but traditional tactics are outdated at best, financially fatal at worst, as local competitors focus on innovation and move up the value chain and as consumers look for new brands and categories to spend money on. New strategies are needed to keep pace with the changing regulatory and consumer environments, and "business as usual" won't get very far. The End of Copycat China is the business guide to this emerging market, with expert guidance from the inside.
PROLOGUE IX Chapter 1 The Innovation Curve Stage 1: Copycat Companies and Low-Hanging Fruit 1 Chapter 2 The Innovation Curve Stage 2: Emerging Innovation 19 Jenny Lee, Managing Partner of GGV in Shanghai 40 Chapter 3 The Innovation Curve Stage 2 Continued: Innovation for China, Biotechnology, and Health Care 47 Brett Tucker, Managing Partner, Baird Private Equity China 59 Chapter 4 The Innovation Curve Stage 3: Innovation for the World 67 S. Y. Lau, President of Online Media Group, Senior Executive Vice President, Tencent 81 Chapter 5 The Beijing Cough: January 2013 87 Peggy Liu, Chair of JUCCCE 98 Chapter 6 The End of Bling 107 Gareth Incledon, Managing Director, HUGO BOSS China 118 Chapter 7 China’s Expanding Consumer Class 131 Richard Liu, Founder and CEO of JD.com 151 Chapter 8 Seeing the World 159 Fritz Demopoulos, Cofounder of Qunar.com 171 Chapter 9 Food Safety: From Chicken to Coffee 179 Steve Liang, Founder of Fields China 192 Chapter 10 The Search for the Next China 201 EPILOGUE 219 NOTES 223 ACKNOWLEDGMENTS 227 INDEX 229
SHAUN REIN is the founder and managing director of the China Market Research Group (CMR), the world's leading strategic market intelligence firm that advises leading international and Chinese companies, private equity firms, and hedge funds about profiting from China's rise. Rein is the author of the international bestseller, The End of Cheap China, and his work is often featured in The Wall Street Journal, the New York Times, and The Financial Times. He frequently appears on MSNBC, CNBC, Bloomberg, BBC, and CNN. He formerly taught executive education classes for the London Business School. He graduated from Harvard University with a master's degree focused on China's economy.
Public opinion about the Chinese economy has failed to keep up with reality since China launched its economic reforms in 1978. In his previous book, The End of Cheap China, Shaun Rein made waves by revealing the white-collar dreams of the Chinese populace. Now, with The End of Copycat China, Rein takes on the topics of innovation and individualism, showing us—yet again—that everything we thought we knew about China is wrong. Of course, our misconceptions aren't entirely without foundation. In The End of Copycat China, Shaun Rein makes the case that much of China's early growth was based on heavy investments and export, driven by a whatever-it-takes mentality of adopting western business models. Those of us who have plans to continue doing business in China on this assumption are in for a big wake-up call. Through over 50,000 surveys, as well as interviews with Chinese consumers, executives, billionaires, and top innovators, the author of this book shows us that the new generations in China have begun to crave authenticity and a Chinese economy that is uniquely their own. It might be difficult to digest some of the truths that The End of Copycat China uncovers. For example, in many areas, there is no longer any such thing as the China cost advantage. Western companies like Nestlé, Adidas, and Hewlett-Packard already learned this lesson the hard way. If we want to avoid losing ground in China in the coming years and decades, we need to understand Chinese market segments in a way that we never have before. Thankfully, The End of Copycat China provides the micro- and macro-level perspectives we need to adapt to this new Asian landscape. The case studies in this book make it clear that the time has come for global business to adapt to China, rather than the other way around. Shaun Rein's proven knack for predicting megatrends will serve as a valuable framework for investors and executives as they strive to understand this enigmatic market. What worked three years ago is certain not to work three years from now, so it's time to get thinking about what The End of Copycat China could mean for you.
Praise for THE END OF COPYCAT CHINA "A very interesting look at the exciting rise of innovation in China." —Marc Andreesen, Cofounder, Andreesen Horowitz and Cofounder, Netscape Communications "China is undergoing the most important transformation in its history and Rein provides the road map to understanding how the techies, the entrepreneurs, the venture capitalists, the dreamers, and the tinkerers are driving that change. Decisions are no longer driven by cost-constrained manufacturing but increasingly by cutting-edge innovation. How China is moving, in fits and starts, up the value chain to creativity is the important message of this book, one of the core business messages of the twenty-first century." —Ambassador Frank Lavin, Chairman, Export Now, Former U.S. Undersecretary of Commerce for International Trade "Once again, Shaun Rein provides fresh insight. At a time when people are preoccupied with challenges, Shaun sees future opportunities from a unique perspective." —Tim Dattels, Managing Partner, TPG Capital Asia "Rein gives an insightful guide to the forces driving the maturation of China's economy as it transitions from one based on emulation and adaptation to being propelled by innovation. As an expert on consumer behavior he also provides a useful analysis of how the country's spending classes are maturing alongside its industry, and the opportunities that this implies for businesses operating in China." —John Quelch, Charles Edward Wilson Professor of Business Administration, Harvard Business School, and Former Dean of CEIBS and London Business School
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