According to WSJ, more than a half of China’s 1.3 billion nationals are now online, and over 95% of them access the Internet through their mobile devices. In 2017, China has hosted over 660 millions smartphone users and that number is expected to grow even more. This expanding smartphone usage has created one of the largest digital markets that the world has ever witnessed. Although this giant market is dominated by local players, such as Alibaba, WeChat, and Tencent, multiple opportunities still lie ahead for foreign companies that hope to take part in China’s digital miracle.
To discuss the changes that digital technology has brought to the Chinese economy, ITC was invited to deliver two speeches, speaking to first to the students and scholars, in cooperation with the Italian Trade Agency (June 13, 2018) and then the American Chamber of Commerce in Shanghai (June 14, 2018). In their discussions, ITC shared their experiences in helping both local and global companies to compete in China's booming digital marketplace.
The Chinese digital ecosystem - ITC x Italian Trade Agency
The Italian Trade Agency is a governmental agency that supports local Italian companies in business development abroad by offering a widespread of overseas networks and assistance. A group of 20 young talents from 50 CORCE Fausto De Franceschi, a prestigious MBA aimed at creating the leading export managers of tomorrow, embarked on a study tour hosted by ITA named, “China Digital Export Journey”. ITC was selected to speak to the students about the Chinese digital landscape and the players and trends of this market.
A group of 20 talented MBA students from Italy attended the presentation
ITC’s Michele Mascolo (Senior Marketing Manager) presented an in-depth overview of China’s digital ecosystem, as well as introducing the biggest players in the market and how they achieved such large market shares. To illustrate their key to success, the presenter discussed the Chinese approach to digital competitiveness and provided real-life examples of the past and current campaigns.
Michele, ITC's Senior Marketing Manager presented an in-depth overview of China’s digital ecosystem
Claudio Passalacqua, an MBA student who attended the event, commented:
The speech provided a precise qualitative and quantitative overview of the main digital players in China and their respective platforms, ranging from e-commerce to social media. In addition, the speech drew a detailed comparison between the Chinese and the Italian digital ecosystem, focusing on their differences and similarities. Last, the speech provided a clear overview of China’s fast-changing consumer behavior, outlining the main trends such as the increasing importance of e-payments via mobile. I would highly recommend this insightful lecture to any person who wants to broaden his or her knowledge of China’s digital ecosystem and grasp the opportunities of the Chinese market.
WeChat current trends and future evolutions - ITC x AmCham Shanghai
The following day, ITC’s Aurelien Rigart, Vice President, and co-founder, was invited by AmCham Shanghai to present to a group of MBA students from California State University - East Bay, whose studies focus on Global Innovation. In this discussion, held together with Ian Driscoll, AmCham Shanghai’s Director of Communications and Publications, Aurelien shared key points regarding WeChat’s digital ecosystem and how WeChat mini programs are reshaping its own digital platform.
Aurelien, ITC’s Vice President, and Co-founder shared insights about WeChat
The presentation gave a 360-degree overview of WeChat, with in-depth discussions of WeChat’s current ecosystem, its strength, and future plans for the so-called “Swiss army knife of the apps”. Great emphasis was also placed on showing successful campaigns by some of the most disruptive companies in China, and how they are leveraging WeChat to reach their goals.
Ian Driscoll remarked that:
At the AmCham Shanghai presentation to MBA students from East California State University, IT Consultis co-founder Aurelien Rigart acted as co-presenter and gave the students an overview of the Chinese social media system. He also took the students on a deep dive into WeChat, what the West can learn from WeChat’s success, as well as the limitations that WeChat may face as it heads overseas. His presentation was fun, engaging and educational.
Aurelien with AmCham members and MBA students from East California State University