TAIZHOU, China, April 7, 2023/PRNewswire/ -- In the 1980s, when German management expert Hermann Simon surveyed his homeland, then the world's largest exporter of industrial goods, and proposed the concept of "hidden champion" , perhaps he did not imagine that China, with its weak industrial base, would become, more than 30 years later, a high plateau where a large number of world "hidden champions" congregate.
China currently has more than 70,000 specialized and sophisticated enterprises making new and unique products, including some 9,000 industrial "little giants," according to the Hehe Culture Global Communication Center. These companies are deeply involved in basic industrial fields, have high market shares and unique advantages in domestic and international markets, resembling Hermann Simon's definition of "hidden champions".
How is it possible that China has seen so many "hidden champions" emerge in just over 30 years? If Hermann Simon had the opportunity to visit the city of Taizhou in Zhejiang Province, an economic powerhouse in eastern China, he would get a good answer to his question.
Surrounded by mountains and seas, this long-standing city has 27 industrial clusters, each with an output value of more than 10 billion yuan, including medicine, automotive, machine tools, and molds. The city is home to 35 "hidden champions" and 90 specialized and sophisticated national companies that make new and unique products, and 307 products made here claim the maximum domestic or global market share.
In a product showroom of Taizhou's Precious Technology Group, half the hall is taken up by heavy-duty industrial sewing machines with different functions. In February this year, the company was identified as the "hidden champion" of Zhejiang Province by virtue of its advantages in the field of thick material industrial sewing machine product segmentation.
"The presser foot of the machine is equipped with an interactive adjustment device invented by us, and the task of moving thick material up can be easily accomplished. However, foreign products with similar functions need to stop production, and then adjust with wrenches. and other tools, which is not very convenient," said Luo Yiming, vice president and chief engineer of the group, adding that its products are one-third cheaper in price.
About 20 kilometers from Precious Technology Group, there is another "little giant" of the niche market: JCtimes Group.
In China, only the plastic extrusion dies produced by JCtimes Group can supply high-quality optical sheets, widely used in the production of motherboards for major domestic mobile phone brands. They look as thin as paper, but they have hundreds of layers. After more than 20 years of development, JCtimes has become one of the top three companies in the world in this market segment.
Keeping an eye on the market gap, concentrating on the development of specialized fields, and constantly innovating around the core business are the open paths for Taizhou's "hidden champions" such as Precious Technology Group and JCtimes Group to stand out in the midst of the heated national and international competition. However, behind the industrial rise of Taizhou companies are many hidden factors.
Taizhou's "hidden champions" have their roots in a long and strong entrepreneurial culture.
Since the reform and opening up, Taizhou has given birth to the country's first joint-stock company, the first private automobile company, the first private commercial bank, the first privately owned high-speed railway, issued the country's first official document on the implementation of the stock market cooperation system, creating a Taizhou-style boom in the development of private economy.
In Taizhou, there is one entrepreneur for every less than eight people on average, and it is the city code that flows in the blood of Taizhou residents to dare to venture out and be the best.
Taizhou's "hidden champions" thrive in a transparent and open business environment. The local government is committed to a positive interaction between macro-management and market forces, allowing private companies to grow relatively freely and focus on development.
In particular, in recent years, Taizhou has made great efforts to build the best business environment in accordance with the World Bank standards, and has set up a dedicated work team to optimize and improve the business environment, one of the top priorities in the government work schedule. A number of steps have been taken to boost the continued brilliant performance of private companies.
Taizhou's "hidden champions" took off with constant investment in research and development.
The average R&D investment of 90 specialized and sophisticated domestic companies manufacturing new and unique products in Taizhou accounts for 5.3% of their revenue.
Taizhou companies also take advantage of foreign support by setting up R & D centers in Shanghai, Hangzhou, Wuhan and other big cities at home and abroad with rich university resources. To date, Taizhou has built 14 science and technology innovation hubs in the Yangtze River Delta, and has attracted many colleges and universities to establish RD platforms and transformation bases.
In addition, Taizhou makes use of powerful digital tools to enable enterprise transformation and upgrading, provides capital support for enterprise development through innovative financial policies and products, and takes advantage of its advantageous geographical position to expand its distribution and business. at home and abroad.
More and more enterprises have broken ground and developed rapidly on this unique soil, making Taizhou a pilot city in promoting science-technological innovation and a national innovation city.
With the development of "hidden champions", this dynamic city is becoming a globally influential manufacturing hub, creating more vivid cases for the rise of the new Made-in-China.
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