If you’re a Switzerland-based entrepreneur, you’ve probably heard about the “Venture Leaders” program. It’s a program where 20 entrepreneurs (on more than a hundred applicants) get selected for a 10-days business development trip in the USA (Boston and New-York), each year in June.
USA seems obvious for Swiss tech entrepreneurs as a key market for their international expansion. But more and more, China is also a place to go, if not THE place to go! This country has experienced such a massive economic development (ask any luxury Swiss watchmaker how important is this country for their brand!) and even if the growth has been slowing down these last years (7.8% in 2012, after having double digits growth rate until 2007), there are a lot of opportunities to seize. China has created its own internet giants, as for instance Alibaba (“the store of everything”), Baidu (“China’s Google) or Weibo (a microblogging site mixing twitter and Facebook features). Companies we are not always that familiar here in Europe, but which are serving hundreds of millions of Chinese customers… I’ve found an interesting infographic on technology integration by Chinese and US students, that you can find here
There are a lot of opportunities for Swiss tech entrepreneurs in China, but how to enter this market? It’s probably one of the most difficult country to penetrate: administrative stuff seems to be a challenge, but I think the cultural differences and the language barrier are even more challenging. Good luck trying to enter China alone… But there are good news for Swiss startup entrepreneurs: venturelab has launched a 10-days business development trip in Beijing/Shanghai for 10 selected entrepreneurs. The program will happen early September (2nd-13th) and you can apply until May 2nd. You’ll find more information and can apply here. Let’s go, Swiss entrepreneurs… let’s conquer China!