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  • Print publication year: 2020
  • Online publication date: October 2020

3 - Building Strategic Capabilities in Chinese Companies


To contribute to our knowledge of the capabilities that are perceived as strategic by emerging market firms, this chapter presents a study of eight Chinese companies with different internationalization levels. They includes two exporters, the high-tech bus manufacturer Higer and the low-tech manufacturer of car seats Baby First. We also examine high-tech multinationals AVIC (aviation), Advantech (computer systems), and ShangGong Group (industrial sewing machines), in addition to low-tech Chervon (hand-held outdoor tools) and Siwei-Johnson (specialized vehicles). Finally, we examine retail service firm Sanpower. By examining and comparing/contrasting the capabilities identified as strategic by these companies, we aim to gain insights into strategic capability development based on the experience of the world’s largest emerging economy. For example, more than one company mentioned their reflection capabilities, a cognitive process where people attempt to increase their awareness and learn from past business experiences, and explained how they apply this mechanism to corporate governance.

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