Here’s some more food for thought. This article by David Kirkpatrick – Senior Editor of the Fortune magazine deals with the challenges faced by Microsoft in China and how the company overcame them to finally taste some success in the land of the dragon.
Kirkpatrick talks about the early days of Microsoft in China when it was perceived as a company which has just entered the country to protect its Intellectual Property rights by cracking down hard on software piracy and nothing else. Those, according to Kirkpatrick were difficult days for Microsoft in the country as it had a bigger agenda, which probably even it didn’t know about.
Subsequently, the efforts of the company in developing stronger ties with the Chinese Govt. and partnering with them to provide cheaper and better computing power first to the governmental agencies and then to the common man, have gone a long way in improving Microsoft’s image as a company and Bill Gates’ image as a common-man’s friend.
Today, Gates is nothing short of a superhero in a country which has a history of allowing very few people to achieve this kind of demi-god status. Quite surprising, considering that this is the very birthplace of all anti-capitalists and probably the last domain of communism that is missing in all of Eastern Europe today.
Read this if you are tuned into the China story or for that matter the Microsoft story.