How western manufacturers run industrial services in China
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School of Science | Master's thesis
AbstractThis thesis analyzes possibilities and challenges that Western manufacturing firms face when carrying out service business in China. The literature review of the phenomenon of servitization provides the starting point for the mapping of different service offerings and processes in manufacturing. The statistical evidence provides an understanding of China's industrial market and the current state of servitization in China. Chinese business culture forms the context whose specificities are examined, from the viewpoint of service business and servitization in particular. The empirical material is based on five case companies that represent Finnish and Swedish manufacturers. The findings are grouped into the three main themes: service offerings, service marketing, and implications of the Chinese context to service business. The last theme is discussed in terms of the "guanxi" dilemma, decision making and negotiation, regulation and policy, sustainability, and free of charge services. A SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats) analysis of the case companies' service business in China summarizes the findings. The contribution of the thesis is to analyze how the practices of industrial services developed in Western countries can be applied in the Chinese context, and what new features can be identified in the Chinese culture and policy that influence service business. However, as the research is limited to the metals and mechanical engineering industries, and as it is based on the interviews of providers (not clients), further research will be needed to validate the findings.
Thesis advisorToivonen, marja
servitization, Chinese business culture, service offerings, service marketing, decision making, regulation and policy, SWOT analysis