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Insight and analysis on the strategies that have led to China's rapid economic expansion

China's rapid economic growth has made it a vital market for the biggest multinational corporations, most of which have invested heavily in China. Yet those corporations face their toughest competition not from other multinationals, but from China's own homegrown businesses. China's entrepreneur class has grown and their businesses are succeeding primarily due to their knowledge of the domestic market, quick adaptation to market changes, and their resourcefulness. To paraphrase Sun Tzu, it is best to know one's enemy. Made in China gives executives at multinationals the inside insight they need to compete with China's homegrown businesses before they lose out.


Winter Nie (Lausanne, Switzerland) is a professor in the Operations and Service Management programs at IMD.

Katherine Xin (Shanghai, China) is a professor at IMD with extensive teaching, research, and consulting experience at universities and companies around the world.

Lily Zhang (Shanghai, China) is a Research Associate at IMD. She has worked at Dow Jones China for more than four years and as a journalist for The Economist Group for two years.


Part I: The Competition between MNCs and Local POEs in the China Market

Chapter 1: Wahaha: Danone’s Dream Partner and Nightmare

Market Segmentation: The Success of a School-Run Factory
Pure Water: the Way to Brand Extension
Future Cola: Sharing the China Market with Pepsi and Coke
A Decade of Collaboration with Danone Was in Trouble 

Chapter 2: Nice: P&G’s Firece Local Competitor

Product Differentiation: The Rising of a Workshop Factory
Winner of the Laundry Detergent Market over P&G and Unilever
Move up into the High-End Market 

Chapter 3: Taobao: the eBay Killer

Taobao: Alibaba’s Defense
Differentiation From the Competitor
Unique Corporate Culture
The Advertisement War
Huge Market Potential Brought by Big Market Share
eBay China or China piece of a global eBay 

Chapter 4: Who Are They?

Chinese POEs: MNC’s Main Competitors in the China Market
Small- and Medium-Sized POEs: Your Potential Rivals
Research Methodology
The Role of Private-Owned Enterprises in China’s National Economy

Part II: The Evolvement of Entrepreneurship in China

Chapter 5: The Development of Chinese Commerce

A Brief Historic Background
The Cultural Revolution
The Period of Reform and Opening-up 

Chapter 6: Three Stories

The Story of Michael Ma
The Story of Liu Qiongying
The Story of Hou Zhengyu 

Part III: Understanding Entrepreneurs in Today’s China 

Chapter 7: Who Are the Typical Entrepreneurs?

Entrepreneurs of Grassroots Background
Experts-Turned Entrepreneurs
Official-Turned Entrepreneurs
Professional Managers-Turned Entrepreneurs 

Chapter 8: Business Model

Startup Capital
Business Model
Business Models with Chinese Characteristics
American Models do not work
Business model Transformation
Building Organizational Capability
Corporate Governance

Part IV: Threats and Opportunities for MNCs: Competition and Cooperation with Chinese Entrepreneurs

Chapter 9: Individual Characteristics for Their Success

Ambition for Big Goals
Breakaway from the Traditional System
Risk Taker: Just Do It
Diligent and Hardworking
Crave for Success, Never Surrender to Defeat
Credibility & Brotherhood
Cultivate and Effectively Use Guanxi

Chapter 10: How Can MNCs Compete with Them?

The Strengths of Chinese Startup POEs
The Weaknesses of Chinese Startup POEs

Chapter 11: How Can MNCs Collaborate with Them?

The Possible Collaborative Opportunities with Chinese POEs
Potential Caveats of Cooperating With Chinese POEs 

Appendix A: Interview Questions

Appendix B: List of Companies