China is no longer about faster and cheaper – but new and better. A fresh generation of super-innovators is fast replacing the master duplicators, who could knock-off anything from a Louis-Vuitton handbag to a DVD in a heartbeat.
Could the next Steve Jobs be Chinese?Don’t be surprised.
Savvy Chinese entrepreneurs developed the Chinese version of Google, eBay and Yahoo, namely, Baidu, Eachnet and Alibaba. Now, these Chinese whizkids are coming up with cutting-edge advances for cell phones, chips, e-commerce and software at the same time – and increasingly, ahead of – the West.
Building world-class companies behind the Forbidden Wall was difficult, but China’s long entrepreneurial spirit has been reawakened with ideas and resources. Chinese startups, fueled by the dragon economy’s fast-expanding market, are turbo-charged to scale quickly and reach profitability at rates not seen in the West – and go public on NASDAQ.
The Chinese innovators are tough competitors, stealing away customers in a wink and eager to make their brands as well-known as Apple, Oracle and Amazon. The net effect could be equivalent to what Japan did to Detroit. Already, China’s new army of youthful entrepreneurs are beginning to challenge the long dominant lead of the U.S. in research and development and boosting China’s standing as a world technology superpower. This should be a wake-up call for the U.S.