My Favorite China Reading – October 2018


Greetings from Peking University,

I am back in Beijing after China’s big holiday week. I generally try to avoid the tourist craziness that happens every year at this time.

In terms of digital China, the giants just keep accelerating and surprising everyone. Lots of interesting things happening in mobility (Didi) and new retail (JD) right now. And “local services” seems to be where all the giants are colliding. I talk about this in an article below. Overall, a fascinating month.

Below are my recommended China articles and books for October 2018. I hope these are helpful.

Cheers, Jeff

—- Good Recent Articles —-

Everything you Need to Know About Daniel Zhang, Alibaba’s New King

This is a good Wired summary of the guy taking over for Jack Ma.


The Modular Kingdom: Why the developer of a new type of vehicle believes China is the future

Mobility is the next big thing coming in China. The new disruption.


The four horsemen of Southeast Asia: Why the region is the next proxy war for Chinese tech companies.

Once you win in China, SE Asia is usually the next target. Lots of interesting digital Giants there.

These Data Take the Pulse of Chinese Consumers Amid Trade Fears

Some good Bloomberg data about Chinese consumer sentiment right now.


Why internet users chose Baidu over Google when it was in China

A good history by Josh Horowitz.


—- My Recent Stuff (Articles and Videos) —-

10 Big Lessons in Chinese AI from Kai-Fu Lee’s Book AI Superpowers (Pt 1 of 2)

AI Superpowers just came out.


Meituan vs. Alibaba vs. Didi vs. Ctrip: Why China’s Internet Giants Are Colliding in Local Services (Pt 3 of 4)

I thought this was pretty solid thinking on all the talk about local services.


Didi is Rapidly Building Out Driver Services. This is Really Important (Pt 2 of 3)

Didi continues to surprise. Drivers’ services are a new platform.


My 7 Favorite China Business Books (Video)


Luckin Coffee Doesn’t Need to Beat Starbucks to Win Big in China (Video)


A Day in the Life of a Didi Chuxing Driver (Pt 1 of 3)

I met with Didi a driver and got some cool info on how it works.


I write, speak and consult about digital strategy and transformation.

My book Moats and Marathons details how to measure competitive advantage in digital businesses.

I also host Tech Strategy, a podcast and subscription newsletter on the strategies of the best digital companies in the US, China and Asia.

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Note: This content (articles, podcasts, website info) is not investment advice. The information and opinions from me and any guests may be incorrect. The numbers and information may be wrong. The views expressed may no longer be relevant or accurate. Investing is risky. Do your own research.

Jeffrey Towson

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