Dr. Lu Gang, founder of TechNode, interviewed Xiong Xiaoge (Hugo Xiong), founding partner of IDG Ventures, at MacWorld Asia 2013. According to Xiong, creativity is the most important issue for Chinese entrepreneurs. Startups should value creativity like artists. Here’s an excerpt of their dialogue.
Lu: What do you think is the biggest change this year?
Xiong: 2013 is the twentieth year for IDG to invest in China. The company harvested this year as the largest VC investor of NetDragon, parent company of 91.com, in Baidu’s acquisition of 91. The focus of Internet industry has shifted from PC to mobile.
Lu: We saw fewer small-sized companies that emerged last year as compared with the year earlier. But the acquisitions of small companies by large enterprises increased. This trend will benefit the ecosystem of startup industry.
Xiong: China has attracted boatloads of VC in the past years, because the entering threshold is not high and companies with around 30 million yuan of net profit are qualified to get listed. Lots of VCs hoped to invest in companies with clear business models or have established their presence in the industry to get investment returns quickly. But the number of this kind of companies is limited. On the contrary, IDG has eyed on wireless Internet industry since long ago. The most important thing in VC industry is to jump onto the right bandwagon. The first batch of companies IDG invested in covered internet companies, such as Baidu, Souhu and Sina, and then we shifted to mobile Internt.
Lu: Appcessory is a popular concept recently. The combination of software and hardware will bring opportunities to Chinese companies.
Xiong: Mobile Internet will bring opportunities to China. It is still in the transitional period. More and more entrepreneurs started a business at an early age. Entrepreneurs should focus on markets rather than products and more companies will generate profits by providing contents.
Lu: What do you think about the gaming industry?
Xiong: Gaming is the first that generates profits by providing content services in China. It can spur creativity and the society needs high-quality and healthy games. I think gaming industry will bring about a new model, providing different games for players on different age levels at different places.