Page 8 - The South China Business Journal
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• Innovation and emerging industries Companies that do not pay

Once known as an economy rife with copycats attention to China will not just
and counterfeits, China-based businesses are
advancing to the leading edge of innovation and miss out on the market, but
experimental business models.
also the country’s increasingly
China’s spending on research and development
is equivalent to about 2.5 percent of GDP, which dynamic innovation that is
is far higher than other countries at similar levels beginning to influence trends
of development. This spending has contributed to worldwide.
the growth of dynamic and innovative business
models in areas like e-commerce, fintech, and ”
artificial intelligence that are competitive with –
or even lead – advanced economies like the US. more established platforms like Snapchat (557
million), Pinterest (444 million), and Twitter
One unique advantage for data-fueled (436 million).
innovation in China is the size of its internet-
using population. China has close to a billion As the case of TikTok shows, trends that began
internet users, which is more than the US and EU in China are beginning to influence trends
combined. About 800 million people in China worldwide. Consequently, it is becoming more
use mobile payments on a daily basis – over eight important to learn from the Chinese market
times more than the US – leading to a world- to inform business models and strategies for
leading fintech industry. global audiences.

China’s tech ambitions are no longer limited Beyond opening an enormous market, investing
to the domestic market either. For example, in China positions international companies to
TikTok, which is owned by the Chinese company gain experience with innovative products that can
Bytedance, now has one billion monthly users, make them more innovative and competitive in
even though the platform is not available in their home countries.
China itself. This makes it the world’s sixth
most used social media platform, far ahead of

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