Responding to Premier Li Keqiang’s call, State-owned enterprises (SOE) are joining the tide of entrepreneurship and mass innovation, with new start-ups and small and micro businesses.
The China Aerospace Science & Industry Corp. (CASIC) was a large SOE with a long history dating back to the country’s first Five-Year Plan period (1953-1957). In recent years, it has built a platform with the help of the internet, to better integrate resources and achieve transformation and upgrades through innovation.
Now, the online platform involves more than 2,000 teams in charge of innovative efforts, and has signed contracts with nearly 600,000 enterprises, with a total output of over 40 billion yuan, according to a person in charge at CASIC.
At the National Mass Innovation and Entrepreneurship Week and the Global Entrepreneurial Leaders Forum held in Shenzhen, Guangdong province, last October, Premier Li was impressed by a speech made by Gao Hongwei, chairman of CASIC, who reported on the enterprise’s innovative efforts.
The platform has brought real benefit to CASIC. Over 30 percent of research costs and 60 percent of research time have been cut for some clients in the traditional industry.
In 2016, CASIC cut overcapacity of nearly 10 billion yuan, while its new business, such as smart robots, new materials and commercial aerospace, saw rapid growth in annual turnover and industrial restructuring.
“Mass entrepreneurship and innovation applies to all sectors; it not only saves small and micro companies, but also brings prosperity to big enterprises,” said the Premier.
And he made similar comments on several occasions. At the 2015 Summer Davos held in Dalian, Liaoning province, Premier Li said that platforms for mass entrepreneurship and innovation are diversified, such as crowd innovation, crowd support, crowd-sourcing, and crowd-funding, which bring reform to production and management.
In a visit to Luoyang Mining Machinery Group in Henan province, Premier Li interacted with makers in the large State-owned enterprise and hailed their efforts in innovation. The Premier also inspected the R&D headquarters of GE China in Shanghai last year and was informed about the innovative measures by the US-based conglomerate.