He bigs up smartphone maker Xiaomi which didn’t list coz it’s private
It’s taken us a couple of weeks to notice because WPP’s Sir Martin Sorrell was writing on LinkedIn – rather than a blog or on Twitter. Anyway, GoMo News has just noticed that Millward Brown, the global research firm, has published its definitive annual BrandZ list of China’s Top Brands. And right there at Number One is the world’s largest MNO [Mobile Network Operator] – China Mobile. Significantly, Sorrell highlights smartphone maker Xiaomi which didn’t make the list. That’s because it is a private company and is therefore ineligible for this survey. He describes its CEO, Lei Jun, as the Steve Jobs of China – a moniker which he apparently dislikes.
The WPP-commissioned survey of top Chinese brands for the first time documents the leading 100 brands rather than merely the top 50. You can read the full report here.
One of the biggest surprises for GoMo News will almost certainly be the discovery of Tencent in third place. Do you know what they do?
Well, Tencent is behind the WeChat messaging service. Launched bakc in 2011, is now used by around 400 million people.
More importantly, Tencent’s revenues and profits are greater than Facebook’s.
Then at Number Five there is Baidu – the search engine which operates almost exclusively in China.
However, it processes more than five billion search queries every day which is roughly on a par with Google’s global figure.
Although Xiaomi used the Android OS, it has unfarily been accused of copying Apple.
Its business model relies not on handset sales but ongoing services to the user, such as accessories and apps.
The company also incorporates the views of customers into design and software development, releasing an update every week based on feedback from its core user base.
As The Economist has pointed out here, it’s a far more democratic approach than that of its US competitors.
Xiaomi launched its first Mi smartphone in October 2011. At $10 billion, after only three years, the company is worth more than Nokia’s handset business .
Plus it has recently overtaken Apple’s market share in China.
Xiaomi is just one example of a growing trend, a trend that will see China become the origin of various disruptive changes in the current structures of global business – and challenge many a complacent Western assumption in the process.
For the curious here the actual Top Ten Chinese brands