If we look back 10 years ago, we would not recognize the names of the Chinese tech industry. Names such as Alibaba Group, Tencent Holdings, and Baidu Inc. are all well known names in that they are becoming global players in the number of followers and the in M&A and research. WeChat is a social network with 1 billion users, and Baidu Inc has a strong grip on internet search.
At Classiarius, we are always looking for the future trends and one that has our attention is the two-worlds of internet that will be offered in the future, one led by the United States and the West, and the other led by China. Think about the great opportunities of having two choices, a world company like Facebook or Twitter, or the Chinese version of each. China will offer a wide variety of platforms and systems that will rival all US names.
China is not touting the “Made in China 2025” program that has the the political hierarchy focusing on computer chips and other technologies that the government has earmarked to arrest the reliance on foreign competitors. China has its leaders talking about AI or artificial intelligence that will add $48 billion to the economy by 2025. However, there are some areas that China is fully committed to dominate but in fact are considered national security risks to some countries. Japan, Australia, the US, the UK and South Korea are now concerned about the possibility of information leaving their systems bought from China. The strong relationship between the Chinese government and business is a concern.
China is now creating its own version of the internet that will be blocked off from the world. The government has control of that internet via a complex system of censors and gateways that have been called the Great Firewall.
Currently, China has more internet users than double the US population. The US population is now at 330 million people while China has over 800 million users on the internet, a market that is massive and growing as the population becomes more affluent. China will have billions to invest as its consumers are moving up the soci0-economic ladder, especially given the fact that they are highly involved in tech.
More on this topic in the coming weeks and months.