1st Edition

Business Ecosystems in China Alibaba and Competing Baidu, Tencent, Xiaomi and LeEco

By Mark J. Greeven, Wei Wei Copyright 2018
    172 Pages 32 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    172 Pages 32 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    We cannot afford to miss the remarkable rise of Chinese business ecosystems. Alibaba and their peers Baidu, Tencent, Xiaomi, and LeEco showcase unprecedented growth and success in China and are expanding their impact globally. With a combined market capitalization of close to 600 billion USD, incubating over 1,000 new ventures and an average annual growth of over 50%, they have become a force to reckon with for the likes of Google, Microsoft, Apple, Amazon, and IBM. ‘Business ecosystem’ is a frequently used concept to describe the unique competitive advantages of the American technology giants. This book explores not only the application of a business ecosystem approach in the Chinese context but also deals with the key strategic question: How did these five Chinese business ecosystems grow so rapidly and successfully?

    The book takes the growth and transformation of Alibaba’s business ecosystem as a focus case in comparison with Baidu, Tencent, Xiaomi, and LeEco. These business ecosystems developed in less than 20 years and transformed from organic growth to rapid expansion by investment and acquisition, entrepreneurship and incubation of new ventures, continuous innovation, and internationalization. This book brings insights and practical lessons on leading, creating, and disrupting markets for corporate executives and professionals in global business, a comparative case study for researchers and students of management, and food for thought on Chinese ways of doing business.

    Part I: Business ecosystems in China

    1. Rise of business ecosystems in China

    Part II: Alibaba case

    2. Alibaba’s ecosystem transformation: strategic change

    3. Expanding by investing: speeding up the growth of Alibaba’s business ecosystem

    4. Ecosystem entrepreneurship: five cases of venturing in Alibaba’s business ecosystem

    5. Continuous innovation: Ant Financial pioneering Internet finance (Chinese FinTech)

    6. Alibaba’s business ecosystem going global

    Part III: Beyond Alibaba: the leading Chinese ecosystems of Baidu, Tencent, Xiaomi, and LeEco

    7. The business ecosystems of Baidu and Tencent

    8. Newcomers Xiaomi and LeEco

    9. Comparing Chinese business ecosystems

    10. Chinese business ecosystems: lessons from BATXL


    Mark J. Greeven is a Chinese-speaking Dutch Professor of Innovation and Entrepreneurship at Zhejiang University, China. For over a decade he has been collaborating with innovative Chinese companies and entrepreneurial multinationals. His work has been published in academic journals and newspapers like The Financial Times and China Daily. He is on the 2017 Thinkers50 Radar list of 30 next generation business gurus.

    Wei Wei is an entrepreneur, investment professional, and the founder of GSL (www.gslpartner.com), an innovation management consultancy. Combining international experience in engineering and venture capital, she helps multinationals and ventures improve innovation practices and achieve growth. She received master degrees in engineering from Tsinghua University and RWTH Aachen University.

    'Business Ecosystems in China talks about a new source of competitive advantage, innovative business ecosystems, in a new industry, the Internet sector, in China. As such, it shows that China is going beyond its traditional cost-based competitive advantage in manufacturing industries. The book describes brilliantly in great depth how a few online companies have grown at incredible speed in China. This work also raises the key question of whether these Chinese Internet giants will be able to transfer their competitive advantages to the rest of the world to challenge Google and other established Western players.'George Yip, Professor of Marketing and Strategy, Imperial College Business School, and lead co-author of China’s Next Competitive Advantage: From Imitation To Innovation

    'This book opens readers’ eyes to the value of the ecosystem. In China, I was fortunate enough to back Robin Li at Baidu. He was instrumental in helping create the Chinese ecosystem portrayed in this book. I know that powerful ideas are created from people working with other people with different backgrounds and cultures. That is the basis for the Draper Ecosystem, and has served us well as educators with Draper University, as business creators with Boost and Hero City, and as investors with Draper Associates and the Draper Venture Network. Read this book and it will help you with whatever your endeavor might be.'Tim Draper, Founder, Draper Associates/DFJ

    'I have had the pleasure to work in the Ecosystem of Mark Greeven and Wei Wei since 2013. They were pivotal in the designing and executing of a DSM Innovation Curriculum for the director level of business, R&D, Marketing & Innovation leaders, fitting into the Chinese business environment. Key notions such as "market and customer based innovation" versus "product and technology based innovation", "try quick, fail fast, succeed quick", "lead time to market", and a "China-specific Business Canvas building" were merged into the curriculum design. And most impressively, we met with entrepreneurs in the Hangzhou Ecosystem of start-ups, and this created a vibe in the hearts and minds of our business leaders that paid off: one of the action projects delivered incredible results from "Ideation" to "initial product testing in the market". I believe that we will see more growth in the global business environment from the Business Ecosystems that Mark and Wei explore in this important research.' — Jan Anne Schelling, Vice President HR Asia, DSM Group People & Organization

    'This book offers a mind-blowing deep dive into the functioning of leading Chinese Giants. The research is detailed, meticulous, and thought-provoking. It debunks a few myths on the structuring of Chinese business ecosystems, and explains how Alibaba, Baidu, Tencent, Xiaomi and LeEco have shaped the rise of Chinese entrepreneurialism and the creation of competitive advantages in high-velocity markets. The book is a must-read for academics and executives who want to understand the rapid transformation and success of China on a global scale.' — Cyril Bouquet, Professor of Strategy and Innovation, IMD Business School

    Full reviews are available here: http://www.gslpartner.com/Endorsements%2020170703.pdf