Everywhere governments are looking for ways to encourage innovations. For super-innovator William Bao Bean the solution is pretty simple: get out of the way. And give visas where possible. Compensating VC for possible losses, like Shanghai wants to do, is certainly the wrong way. Singapore on the other hand does a good job.
Chinese companies have often been blamed for copying Western innovation and patents. But now China takes the lead in mobile innovations, the argument seems to go the other way. Many of the features we know from WeChat we see now popping up at Facebook. Innovator William Bao Bean discusses whether Facebook has become a WeChat clone.
Many foreign companies fail when they try to enter the China market. According to William Bao Bean, a partner at Shanghai venture capital firm SOSV, dealing with over 120 startups per year, that is because they follow too often the instincts they take along from their home market. Wrong, he tells in the South China Morning Post.
Startups should not expect to find the Promised Land in China, told VC-veteran William Bao Bean an investment conference on China in Tel Aviv last month. 95 percent of you should not be here, he told according to the Times of Israel. With one exceptions: Chinese internet companies cannot deal with algorithms. They urgently need mathematicians.
“Should I bother to come to China, people ask often, The answer generally is: No.” William Bao Bean talks to a group of Israeli startups in Tel Aviv. “When you use your gut feeling in China, you are mostly wrong. In China technology is not important, its about cash, friends or both.” Lessons from a seasoned investor, who says you can only succeed if you have an “unfair advantage”.