Taking a Closer Look at Shanghai’s Unique Tech Approach

Shenzhen was the Chinese epicenter of a massive economic shift to manufacturing in the early 1980s and the attraction to most foreign manufacturing companies setting up there was the promise of inexpensive labor.  On a visit to Shenzhen City (near Hong Kong) a couple of years ago I was surprised to learn how much that is changed when a large US optical manufacturing customer was in the process of moving its operations to Vietnam due to the rising cost of labor in China. The shift of manufacturing from China to other countries has also signaled a shift of Chinese companies focusing more on technology and business innovation. Nowhere is that  more obvious than in Shanghai where smaller districts are all setting up innovation hubs and incubators to build the foundation for this innovation economy.

Impact10x had a recent opportunity to speak at one technology park called Keiji50 in the Jiading area of Shanghai. The main focus of this park was  IOT/wearable devices and housed probably 10-20 companies on its campus.  Companies building versions of Google glass, Smart Mirrors and even Smart Coffee machines adorned its demonstration room. Especially interesting was the fact that the center also did China based VC investments through a quasi-government funded organization. We had an opportunity to talk to their Partners to find out a little more about how their VC investments worked in China. It seems most investments were made after a working prototype had been demonstrated and with maximum investments of 3M RMB (approximately $500K USD).  Seed capital financing did not seem to be something that they were particularly comfortable with as some of the frameworks/tools they used to evaluate innovations were based on mass appeal to a broad consumer audience. Most true breakthroughs start with a small core of leading edge customers which then lead to growth.

Another piece of their investment approach was the emphasis on patents or other more basic scientific intellectual property which could be a competitive barrier to entry.  Although this has traditionally made sense 5-10 years ago, with the massive shift to more open source platforms, crowd sourcing and any new innovation being circulated around the planet at light-speed…basing your competitive advantage solely on protection of information is quickly being eroded. As Bill Gates recently said “intellectual property has the shelf life of a banana”.

Stay tuned for the next couple of blog posts as we will be posting some more of our discoveries on China and Shanghai based incubators and technology parks.

 

Wearable Tech Seminar in Shanghai for Sun Lovers (or haters)!

Impact10x was delighted to share the story of our UV Protection Wearable device to a room of technology and business professionals at IC CAFE a technology incubator and investment fund located in Shanghai. Please check out the summary of the talk on UV Protection Wearable and Smart Garment technology by IC Cafe.

Here were the highlights of what we covered:

Love the Sun!  Health Care App and Smart Garment hardware solutions: We are entering a golden age in the evolution of IT where better information, automation and connectivity will transform every industry in the next 10 to 20 years.  Industries that have not changed in a long time (for example: health care, clothing, and consumer goods companies) are all on the verge of disruption through technology.  Combine this technology pressure with people’s new attitudes about fitness, health and environmental stewardship and there is a massive opportunity for many new businesses to form.

In this presentation we will talk about some of the broad trends in the technology industry including Mobile technology, Apps and wearable devices and how this has created innovative o2o, sharing economy and IOT business models which are disrupting traditional businesses.  We will then deep dive on Impact10x’s  Sun Care technology platform which includes Health App technology and Smart Garment hardware solutions.

If you like this post, please check out some others on UV Protection or contact us at info@impact10x.com.