Technology and culture can intertwine to create a tipping point: SY Lau, Tencent

On Day 4 of Cannes Lions 2018, Tencent's Senior Executive VP discussed the uniqueness of China's digital experience and the strategic implications thereof

e4m by exchange4media Staff
Updated: Jun 22, 2018 10:46 AM

On day 4 of Cannes Lions 2018, SY Lau, Tencent's Senior Executive VP, took to stage to discuss the uniqueness of China's digital experience and the strategic implications thereof.

Lau said that while companies like Googles of the world, Amazon, Alibaba are creating billions of users across the world, they are causing all sort of disruptions, restructuring within the ecosystems across many industries. The VP raised a few pertinent questions for companies to delve deeper into and shared solutions for them.

One of these was how to win the hearts of a billion users. “The answer lies in the Founder’s spirit, an open platform mind-set, digital lever and craftsmanship,” said Lau adding that someone would argue that winning a billion is not one of the most difficult challenges. “The real challenge lies in how to maintain the billion users,” he continued.

Lau feels that the interplay of technology and culture helps create exceptional experience. “This as a user makes you feel independent and connected at the same time. It goes beyond the digital world which is the catch. Technology and culture can intertwine to create a tipping point," he shared. 

Lau cited various examples of how technology and cultural good can be combined. He revealed that there are many new emerging cultures in China like e-commerce culture, bike-sharing culture and more. He said that many initiatives like public welfare activities, fund-raising etc are part of the culture now, combining the best of tech and culture.

“With the digital payment culture, China is not just a cashless society but a cashless nation,” he continued. Lau opined that a new civilization will be born which will be called digital civilization. “The digital civilization unleashes individual potential and not just productivity. It brings efficiency, inclusivity and sustainability to life and transcends nations connecting us on a human level,” he explained.

Speaking about what are company responsibilities as custodians of a billion users, Lau said, “We can’t confine ourselves to just providing good products. Brands and companies must play a broader and more constructive role in the society for the long-term." He cited the example of Tencent and their initiatives of supporting the cultural heritage around the world. “Only when you create exceptional experience for billions of users, can you win the hearts of people around the world,” he said.

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