01:24 Brief history of Shenzhen

03:00 Comparing the foundations of Silicon Valley vs Shenzhen

28:44 Africa-China relations and the importance of infrastructure

49:10 Shenzhen's open innovation model and ecosystem

58:45 Local involvement is important for economic growth

If you look back just under 40 years ago, the global Information Technology sector was completely different, from the perspective of the dominant countries and companies, from what it is today. However, it is exactly at that time that China started building a city that plays an extremely important role in the global supply chain of electronic goods and especially mobile phones.

In this podcast, David Li, who works in Shenzhen, explains how the Chinese government selected Shenzhen, a rural fishing village of a few thousand people, 39 years ago as one of its Special Economic Zones. This decision, along with other factors that David elaborates on, led to Shenzhen today being responsible for over 60% of the global mobile phone market.

One of the other highlights of this episode of The Tefo Mohapi Show is that David explains how Shenzhen's open innovation model differs from how things are done in Silicon. Part of this model is how Shenzhen technology ecosystem endeavors to turn high-tech into a commodity and as such has become a supplier to some companies that are creating technology products for underserviced communities like we have in parts of Africa.


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