Day 8 – Shanghai: Visit to Kuehne+Nagel and journey to Hangzhou

After checking out of the hotel we took a bus to the German company Kuehne+Nagel, which provides to its custoemers fully integrated supply chain solutions. Mr. Gino Marzola (General Manager of Kuehne+Nagel Shanghai) and Markus Johannsen (Seafreight Manager) welcomed us at the headquarters in Shanghai. Afterwards Mr. Benjamin Schatzel, Assistant seafreight manager, held a presentation and gave us very interesting insights in to the main business units. Kuehne+Nagel operates in the field of seafreight (No 1 worldwide), airfreight (No. 3 worldwide) contract logistics (No. 3 worldwide) and road and rail logistics (No. 6 in Europe). The presentation was followed by a lunch consisting of delicous sandwiches offered by Kuehne+Nagel.

In the afternoon accompanied by Benjamin Schatzel and Ms. Amelie Saupe (Marketing Executive), we embarked the bus towards Yangshan Port. The journey took us about 1.5h from which the last 20 minutes led over a 32.5 km long brand new bridge to an artificial island. On a viewpoint we had a magnificent view over the port with it’s thousands of containers and many departing and arriving container vessels. Then we made a tour through the exibithion halls of the Yangshan Port Management Center. One could marvel at a mindblowing model of the whole harbour area. After some last pictures we headed towards the Shanghai Hongqiao train station, where we embarked on a train to Hangzhou. Arrived in Hangzhou we took taxis to our next hotel.

Day 7 – Shanghai: Shanghai VW (SVW); Artwell (Cashmere) and Wuzhen (Venice of China)

Ready for another long and interesting day around Shanghai we met early in the morning in the lobby and boarded the bus for heading to the first company visit of the day. After driving out of Shanghai for quite a while we arrived at the VW factory where we had the chance to have a look at one of the company’s high-quality production plants producing the brands VW and Skoda for the Chinese market. We had a quick instruction by a video-tap followed by a ride through the production and they showed us two of the three main production areas. It was fascinating to see all the robots working on the cars and especially the pure form of just-in-time production was impressive. Unfortunately it was kind of a standardised visit and it was not possible to ask detailed questions about VW in China.

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Day 6 – Shanghai: Free time and acrobatic show

On Sunday, there was no official schedule. The students enjoyed the free day in the beautiful and exciting city of Shanghai which offers lot of opportunities. Some students went shopping, others sightseeing, others had to recover from the night at M1NT.  In the evening, the students with interest in acrobatics took the chance to visit the Shanghai Magic & Acrobatic Troup at the Shanghai Magnolia Theatre. The show was very impressive – a great combination of traditional and modern music and performance.

Day 5 – Shanghai: World Financial Center / Yuyuan Garden / Chinese Opera

First day in Shanghai was drawn by many breathtaking impressions. With recharged batteries, we met at 10:30 at the hotel lobby to start our sightseeing day with Dr. Rüttimann. We were walking through urban canyons, crossing the main shopping area but always the tremendous skyscrapers in the field of view. And then the first big highlight of this day: Observation platform of the “bottle opener” (World Financial Center), the newest and tallest skyscraper with a height of 492 meters. At the 100th floor the city was lying below our feet and the view was fabulous. It has to be mentioned that this very modern city is by far comparable to any other big cities of the world.

After receiving a birds eye of view of Shanghai, the tour continued with walking along the Bund Promenade and a nice cruise over the Hangpu River. On the other side, we went to see the Yuyuan Garden which was built in the Ming Dynasty, more than 400 years ago. Yuyuan literally translated means Happy Garden. At the late afternoon the official part came to end. Our big group spread over the whole city.

Some students enjoyed bargaining at the Bazar, purchasing faked watches, bags, t-shirts and so one. Others spent their time in buying tailor made suits and business clothes, visiting the Shanghai Cunfucian temple or taking a ride with the high speed Maglev Train. The evening program started with an old, traditional Chinese Opera, continued with a roof-top bar and ended in a premium club where we enjoyed the Shanghai nightlife.

Day 4 – Bejing: Zimmer/Montagne, Olympic Stadium and Fast Train to Shanghai

Our last day in Beijing started in the morning, where we had to check out of the Novotel and be ready for boarding the coach. Around 8:30am the coach took us to the Zimmer’s (US company) new acquisition, the Montagne factory in Changping District. We were warmly welcomed by Mr. Robby Kissling (Integration Director) and his team. After a detailed presentation, that contained information about the changes, which had been made since the time Zimmer had acquired the company, we were shown those changes while walking through the factory. As earlier described by Mr. Kissling during the presentation, Montagne produces orthopaedic implants for the Chinese market. Even as those products are in the mid range, seen from a global prospective, those product are on the higher end for the Chinese market, as the sell around USD 3,500. When Zimmer was taking control over the factory in the beginning of the year, post-merger integration process started. Continue reading

Trip to China 2011

This year, the ZHAW School of Management and Law again organizes a field trip to China. The class led by Prof. Dr. René Ruettimann will visit between the 28th of June and the 16th of July interesting places with valuable contributions to understand better the “Kingdom of the middle”. This year’s trip focuses on the cities Beijing, Shanghai, Hangzhou, Yiwu City, Guilin, Guangzhou, Shenzhen and Hongkong. Basically, the trip focuses on four main areas:

The main attractions will be large and midsize Chinese companies, Swiss subsidiaries in China, historical and cultural attractions as well as speeches and lectures at two universities. The organization team exists of M. Lehmann. J. Brzezek, A. Naeff, S. Haelg and M. Colle. For all interested in the progress of our trip, please read our daily addition to the blog 2011 and receive more details about our activities.

Day 05 – Visit of the University of Nottingham Ningbo and the Volkswagen Factory

This 5th day of our trip is already our last day in Shanghai for which we have scheduled two different activities. Therefore our group was divided into two teams of 25 students for today. One team went to visit a factory of Volkswagen and the other team went to visit the University of Nottingham in Ningbo China (UNNC).

University Visit: UNNC

First, a couple of words about the university we visited. The UNNC is a leading University in China and ranking under the top 100 worldwide. The UNNC consists of 19 faculties and colleges which cover many disciplines with about 2300 staff members and over 50’000 students in Bachelor & Master Programs. The UNNC was also the very first Sino-Foreign University established in China. More information can be found on the website of UNNC.

Our group of 25 students travelled 220 kilometers to Ningbo in the south of Shanghai to meet the ZHAW delegation lead by Werner Inderbitzin, the president of the ZHAW.  Together, we visited the UNNC to deepen the relationship between the two partner institutions. Nick Miles, the Provost and CEO of UNNC, welcomed us with a detailed presentation about the UNNC in the conference room. Nabil Gindy, Vice-Provost for research and Dean of Graduate School at the UNNC, did also hold a presentation about the research & innovation. Continue reading

Day 04 – The complete package

The schedule of day 4 was comprehensive and allowed broad and diverse insights into various aspects of Chinese business. This included: Visiting the Mayor of Suzhou, a visit at Phonak and a Silk Factory, a tour through the Lingering Garden and a canal tour. A reception at SWISSNEX in the evening completed the day.

As for some events the maximum number of participants was limited, our class was split up into 2 groups. The day started for a delegation of the ZHAW and 10 students with an official meeting with the Mayor of the industry park in Suzhou. The main topic of the discussion was about the recruiting model supplying the needed labor for the companies operating in the industry park. This, to our surprise, is done centrally through a government regulated agency. After the talk we had the chance to visit an exhibition about the Industry Park of Suzhou. Meanwhile, the other group of students enjoyed a boat ride on the Beijing-Hangzhou Grand Canal, the longest artificial river in the world with 1’776 km. Continue reading

Day 03 – Company Visit Baosteel

Day three has started early, with a good breakfast, after a wild night for some. The meeting was scheduled at 9:15, but not everyone has shown up on time. We took-off a bit later than expected with the consequences of missing some people on the bus. The visit of this day was a government owned company named BAOSTEEL, which produces and manufactures steel. Our tour of the company started with a broad and interesting speech by Ming Weh, who in broadly introduced BAOSTEEL’s daily activities. Afterwards we were invited to eat lunch at BAOSTEEL’s canteen. We all enjoyed a very delicious meal and were prepared to move on and get a tour at the company’s heavy metal production facility which was very different and impressive to all of us. The entire area of BAOSTEEL accounts for 25 km². For safety reasons we had to wear helmets. Continue reading

Day 02 – First Evening in Shanghai

After a small break in the hotel and freshening up we went off to our first dinner in China. The typical Chinese food like fried chicken, pork and fish, as well as rice and vegetables were served as dishes on a turntable. Getting used to the chopsticks was a challenge for some of the students.

Afterwards we took a boat trip on the Huangpu River, which on one side offered us an impressive view of  The Bund district, which is Shanghai‘s stately street of old colonial era buildings and was once the financial centre of the Far East. and on the other side of the river of  the Pudong, Shanghai‘s newest district , a Special Economic Zone full of gleaming skyscrapers rising out of what was farmland only 15 years ago. Continue reading