“China is very entrepreneurial – 16,500 companies get registered in China EVERY DAY“. This is one of the many surprising insights that Wei Zhou, CEO of XNode, a 100% privately owned accelerator, had for us. We – a group of 20 European innovation and change consultants – visited Xnode at their main office in Pudong, Shanghai. We saw an extremely cool designed co-working place, the home of all kinds of Start-ups, from a two persons team up to the size of 50 people. They are active in fields of robotics components, drone software development, cross-border payment or software for facial recognition. We saw highly focused young engineers in every corner of the place. Having seen accelerators in Silicon Valley before, we concluded that this place is at least as cool and busy, however, the dedication to achieve something big here is almost more tangible. Wei Zhou explains why: “China is very entrepreneurial”. It is part of the DNA of this country. Consequently, Chinese entrepreneurs are not afraid to make mistakes and they are ready to fail very fast.
Wei Zhou’s mission for Xnode is to empower innovators by building connections between Start-ups, government, corporates and academia. And he seems to do this very successfully: In the past 1.5 years he and his partner John Lin, senior executive advisor, have built up a Start-up community and connect the best of them with large corporates. Both Wei Zhou and John Lin have worked in multinational corporations before. They know exactly what these organizations need: They do wake-up calls and learning journeys into the reality of Chinese Start-ups also for the board members of big western corporations. Amongst others, companies like BMW, Philips or SAP work with Xnode to get into close cooperation with the most promising Chinese Start-ups. Wei Zhou’s message is simple: China is not only a significantly large market for multinational corporations, but also a place where great innovations can take place fast. In his words, “China shall be the best experimental field in innovation”. And he clearly wants to accelerate this.
blog by Stefan Posch