Day 6 – Shanghai – Huawei / Autoneum

In the morning after the first night in Shanghai we went to the headquarter of Huawei. Our visit started with a warm welcome and a group photo in front of the reception. Next we were given a guided tour through the Shanghai MBB Experience Center where we received an informative and impressive insight into Huawei’s products. In reflection it can be said that the future will bring us a better connected world through almost invisible and more powerful mobile network cells.

Huawei Groupphoto

After our visit at Huawei we once again experienced the Chinese lifestyle. According to a lack of communication our bus was not allowed to drive to Autoneum Taicang Plant as it is located in another province and our bus had no licence to drive there. Thanks to the great flexibility in China, a visit at Autoneums Asia headquarter was arranged. This event again states that flexibility in China is more important than planning. One thing that needs to be highlighted about Autoneum is their impressive aim to grow 20% every year which is a perfect example of the company’s ambitions and culture.

Beside our visits at Huawei and Autoneum we always explore the Chinese lifestyle as already mentioned above. Another issue related to this is that we cannot understand why there are so many Chinese people driving a car which seems unaffordable for them. The simple solution is bank loans. This again shows a big difference between our way of living and the one in China.

After a long day full of impressions everyone is looking forward to our optional dinner at the five star restaurant Shangri-La.

Day 5 – Hangzhou – Alibaba / West Lake

Alibaba Groupphoto

The main reason for visiting the city of Hangzhou was the invitation from the e-commerce company Alibaba. In the headquarter of Alibaba we received a warm welcome from our hosts Albert and Violet. During their presentation, which took place in a modern conference room, we were all impressed by the amount of information we received. On a huge screen they presented their data-dashboard where many “real-time KPIs” such as the current number of buyers and trades were shown. Albert and Violet made clear that providing platforms for trading goods (as some might believe) is not the core business of Alibaba. As a result of the enormous service they provide to their customers, Alibaba collects an incredible amount of data from their clients. The collection and usage of the so called “big data” is their real core business. Within a few years they defeated their opponents such as e-bay in the Chinese market in an impressive manner. Today, 350 million people are using the platforms of Alibaba in order to buy or sell products. Comparing this number to Switzerland, Alibaba has almost 44 times more customers than Switzerland inhabitants.

Still impressed by the presentation of Alibaba, we headed over to the West lake, which is an “UNESCO world cultural heritage”. After a traditional Chinese lunch and a walk along the lake we finally took the high speed train to Shanghai. In the evening some of the students went to the Bar Rouge where we had a welcome drink as well as an incredible view of the skyline of Shanghai.