Fortune Global 500 list released yesterday shows Cedar Holdings ranked 301st, 60 spots up from that of 2018. Reports on this news from Xinhua News Agency, and XINHUANET, cankaoxiaoxi.com, Xinhua Daily Telecoms, Bi-Monthly Discussions, OUTLOOK WEEKLY, CNR, The Southern Daily, Guangzhou Daily as well as other official media of central, provincial and municipal governments went viral all of a sudden, especially in Moments. Let's find out more about Xinhua's insights.
Xinhua News Agency: Cedar Holdings jumped to 301st among Fortune Global 500 list - Rapid Growth Powered by Global Plan
On 22nd July GMT+8, Fortune, an American multinational business magazine published Fortune Global 500 list 2019. Cedar Holdings ranked 301st with a revenue of $268.8 billion, 60 spots up from that of last year. This is the second consecutive year for this Guangzhou homegrown private enterprise to make it to that list.
Fortune Global 500 list is, for a long time, held as the most recognized and authoritative ranking that measures the development of large companies around the world. It is also a key indicator of competence, scale and international influence of world's big names.
Construction Underway on Cedar Headquarters Located in Huangpu District, Guangzhou
Business scope of the listed enterprises this year signals that opening and cooperation are important drivers for vibrant international trade and business. Economic globalization is irreversible. With China's reform and opening-up deepening, more and more outstanding companies including Cedar Holdings has ridden on the sound momentum to develop overseas and grown upon international competition and cooperation, aiming to be world's top 500 companies.
Since 2018 when Cedar Holdings made its debut on the list for the very first time, it has focuses on its core businesses while actively expanding its global landscape. Every business section remains stable and robust.
In the past 12 months, Cedar Holdings has redoubled its efforts on industry. Commodities, as one of its core businesses, constantly speeded up its international development by extending upstream and downstream industrial chain worldwide. Today, Cedar has abundant mineral resources including gold, copper, iron and coal across the world, with businesses operations covering Asia, Europe and Africa and branches in over 10 countries and regions. Qixiang Tengda, a company of chemicals and new materials under Cedar, engaged in technology cooperation with world's top players in chemical industry. At the same time, it is becoming increasingly influential and competitive. Fortune China 500 list released days ago shows that Qixiang Tengda soared to No.302. Cedar Cultural Tourism business has built tourist attractions in the form of towns and villages in many cities in China, witnessing evergrowing brand influences. Cedar smart city services business benefit up to 900 million m2 nationwide.
While focusing on its core businesses, Cedar Holdings insists on development centred on industry and guarded by finance. The conglomerate has made full of financial resources from Cedar International Trust and Dalian Financial Asset Exchange to serve financial innovations and industry growth.
Qixiang Tengda's Plant
As a Guangzhou homegrown privately held company listed among Fortune Global 500, Cedar Holdings greatly benefits from sound business environment and unique location advantages, which lead to its fast rise. Construction of the multifunctional headquarters (HQ) of Cedar Holdings, located in Huangpu District, Guangzhou, is coming to an end, and that of HQ2 has started.
Based in Guangzhou, this key player of China's industry on a globalization drive takes advantage of Guangzhou's march towards a cosmopolitan city to expand vigorously business scope of commodities. That is how Cedar Holdings can come close to its goal of becoming Chinese equivalent of Glencore, a top-notched international conglomerate.
OUTLOOK WEEKLY: Guangzhou and TOP 500 Companies - invisible baton & visible Top 500
With supports from China's economy boom, Guangzhou can't afford to link itself to companies listed on TOP 500. With these companies clustering and growing in Guangzhou, the city has no chance to obtain its status today in global economy system and internatioal division of labour. Without the mission of participation in global competition and labour division on behalf of China, Guangzhou would no be competent enough to become one of China's first tier cites and even GaWC's Alpha cities.
Picture from VCG
It took only 30 years only to go from 1 to 301
As one of the three largest gate cities in China, Guangzhou boasts attractiveness that exceeds Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macau Greater Bay Area Development Plan Outline's expectation on it as a cosmopolitan city. By 2018, 301 companies listed on Fortune Global 500 have invested up to 1017 projects in Guangzhou, with over 120 of them establishing headquarters there.
At the forefront of reform and opening-up, Guangzhou, a thousand-year-old trade center of China could't wait to open itself to the outside world. Philip Morris International from USA established Kraft Heinz Company in Development Zone of Guangzhou in 1996, ushering in an era when large multinationals flooded to Guangzhou.
Among them are top-notched companies including P&G, Royal Dutch Shell, Honda, Toyota, Hitachi, LG, Ge, Cisco, Foxconn, Zurich Insurance, which started their business drive in Guangzhou. Projects centred on Fortune Global 500 companies and its likes have always been a sought after target for cities. From the past assembly lines that symbolize modern industry, to R&D centre at the forefront of global technology development, from the old three pillars - electronics, automobile, petrochemicals to IAB industrial plan and modern service sector nowadays, from 30 years ago when the first enterprise out of the top 500 invested in Guangzhou to 301 of them battling for grounds and market shares here...The historic account of top 500 companies in Guangzhou records changing visibility of this city among its peers from all around the world.
As the city sprawls, it is met with a new wave of investments from Fortune Global 500 companies. Along the line dotted with hubs including Guangzhou, a multi-sector belt has gradually taken shape as these enterprises such as Cisco, China COSCO Shipping, China Reform Fund, Microsoft, GE Bio-campus, Foxconn, and Hitachi vied with one another to set up operations here.
Guangzhou used to be more of an international trade centre that gathers logistics, people, and business transactions. Nowadays, Guangzhou is rising as a key hub in the urban network, attracting new elements including capitals, technology and talents that are more important.
In December 2017, Guangzhou held 2017 Fortune Global Forum where a record 152 out of Top 500 companies and over 1100 guests attended. Some compares multinational companies to a spider that spreads its silk threads across the world, connects each dot it laid and finally spins a web. As South China plays an increasing important role in the world economy, multinational companies from overseas tended to move their advanced producer services to where their headquarters are, and thus Guangzhou become their first choice.
Young but superior- from 0 to 4
Fortune Global 500 List has always been the most recognized and authoritative ranking for large corporations in the world. It is also known as the ultimate list.
A year before, on 19 July, Fortune published Fortune Global 500 2018 list, on which Chinese companies did really good job. Among them under the spotlight there is a slightly new face from Guangzhou.
This is Cedar Holdings, the second Guangzhou homegrown private enterprise that made it to the ranks of global big businesses. It is the first time for this company to be listed. With 221billion RMB in total revenue, it secured No. 361 among the world's largest corporations by revenue and No.15 among China's private enterprises. Apart from Cedar Holdings, Guangzhou-based companies including China Southern Power Grid (No.110), and GAG Group also made it to the list.
More specifically, Cedar Holdings is the fourth corporations that works all its way up from Guangzhou to Top 500 companies list.
The first Fortune 500 list was out in 1955, but the first Fortune Global 500 list in real sense never made its debut until 1995. In the 1995 list and those for the next ten years, not a single Guangzhou company could be found.
In 2005, it's not zero anymore. China Southern Power Grid, headquartered in Guangzhou scaled the global ranking for the first time in history, and has stayed there for 14 years in a row. It even climbed onto the top 100 ranks in 2016.
In 2013, GAG Group managed to follow suit, which means China Southern Power Grid was no longer the only Guangzhou based company to be included. It is the sixth consecutive year for GAG Group to stay on the list. In 2016, Evergrande Group made it to the list as well as a Guangzhou homegrown private enterprise. The next 3 years witnessed 3 Guangzhou-based corporations to be listed every year. In 2018, Cedar Holdings made its debut among the top 500 companies while Evergrande relocated its headquarters away from Guangzhou. Latecomers surpass old timers. Cedar, as the latecomer, has taken the baton passed from the pioneers above to become the current leader among private enterprises in Guangzhou.
In the past 20 years or so, 4 corporations, nurtured by Guangzhou, have grown and thrived, working their way up to the Fortune Global 500 list. Latecomer rocks. Compared with old timers on the list, China Southern Power Grid (2002), GAG Group (1997), Evergrande (1997), and Cedar Holdings (1997) was founded later than 1995 when the first Fortune Global 500 list was published. They are all young and robust born after 1995, with the latter three at the same age.
To be a world leading city, one is required to be attractive enough to top 500 companies and capable enough of nurturing them. To grow 4 top players in two decades only is fast and competent. Is it possible to be even faster? And perhaps even more? Who can be the second Cedar Holdings?
In Summer Davos 2019, Guangzhou Phar.Holdings set its goal-making a revenue of 150 billion RMB and scale the top 500 ranking next year. Cantonese people tend to keep a low profile. Perhaps somewhere in Guangzhou, seeded players are building up their strengths, biding their time until the time is right.
Would the time ever be right for them? We may find out.
Transformation and Upgrade-from Trade Centre to Headquarters
Why are nationalities and cities for corporation headquarters marked on the Fortune Global 500 list? Because, to some extent, the list is a ranking of a country's comprehensive power and a city's competitiveness. For a city especially, the more large corporation headquarters there are, the better its business environment proves to be, and thus the higher the city status is.
"For every 5 companies listed on Fortune Global 500, 3 of them invests in Guangzhou. This is, indeed, something to be proud of. However, what we really expect to see is that for every 4 of top 500 companies, one set up headquarters or headquarters-like office. This is definitely a larger achievement." said a Guangzhou government official experienced with investment promotion bluntly.
Guangzhou and Top 500 companies hit it off, thanks to headquarters economy boom.
Headquarters economy brings many spillover effects to economic development, and thus is regarded as an edge and driver for cities in competition in the future. It is an important strategy for bumping a city up in the global coordinate system as well as an explicit indicator for measuring a city's development. Since the reform and opening-up 40 years ago, Guangzhou has blazed a trail of transformation and upgrade from a conventional trade centre to a headquarters economy highlight.
In 2007, Guangzhou Municipal Government put headquarters economy in Report on the Work of Government for the first time. In January 2010, Guangzhou published Implementation Opinions on Accelerating Headquarters Economy, which proposes that efforts should be made to build the most vital headquarters economy capital in Asia Pacific Area out of Guangzhou in 5 to 10 years.
Why should Guangzhou devote itself to Headquarters Economy? Provisional Measures for Improving Headquarters Economy Development of Guangzhou released last year presents three benefits from Headquarters Economy. First, it helps Guangzhou, as a centre city of China, to better amass investments and talents, facilitate the development of surrounding cities and deliver comprehensive services. Second, it helps to gather quality resources, and upgrade industrial structure. Third, it helps strengthen Guangzhou's comprehensive competitiveness and improve its status in the international division of labour.
The Provisional Measures includes favourable policies and incentives for attracting corporation to establish their headquarters in Guangzhou. According to the Measures, corporation that brings headquarters to Guangzhou can be rewarded with 5million RMB, 10million RMB, 20million RMB or 50million RMB for three years in a row depending on the sector it is in, its GDP contributions, number of years for which it is registered in Guangzhou, and their registered capital. This means that corporations that set up headquarters in Guangzhou can be rewarded with up to 150million RMB in total for three years if they meet the requirements.
Enterprise to be introduced should be forward-looking, in terms of which industry it belongs and will belong to, as well as where the world is going. At the moment, Guangzhou is committed to developing headquarters economy that aligns with Guangzhou's strategic emerging industry blueprint. Guangzhou is also focusing on putting in practice IAB plan, which is to grow new generation of Information Technology, Artificial Intelligence as well as Biological Medicine and other strategic emerging industry of their likes, leading to several industrial clusters of valued at hundreds of billions RMB.
In March 2019, Development and Reform Commission of Guangzhou Municipality published a list of about 470 corporations that have their headquarters settled in Guangzhou, which is confirmed in 2018. The number of corporations that set up headquarters in Guangzhou, the number of them rewarded and talents they brought with skyrocketed to a record high. About 50% of these corporations are in modern sector, among them almost 15% in finance & insurance sector, which reflects the effect of Guangzhou service sector upgrade. About 10% of them are in new generation of IT, telecom and advanced manufacturing, which mirrors the explicit trend of technology-led real economy development of Guangzhou.
On the Upswing-from CBD in Tianhe District to Pioneering Boulevard
Unarguably, Tianhe District and Huangpu District are head and shoulders above the others in Guangzhou in terms of attracting top 500 companies and developing headquarters economy.
Statistics show that investments from top 500 companies are gradually becoming evenly distributed, with Tianhe and Huangpu taking a relatively larger share. Moreover, 143 of top 500 corporations launched 191 projects in CBD of Tianhe District. Among them 13 multinational companies set up headquarters there and 500 of them come from within China. Huangpu District have attracted about 150 of top 500 companies to settle down.
As a centre for Guangzhou's finance sector and company headquarters, CBD of Tianhe District is home to the largest number of enterprises on the Fortune Global 500 list, 70% of financial organizations in Guangzhou, as well as 90% of total assets of foreign-invested banks. High concentration of businesses of modern sector leads to clustering of resources necessary for development including technologies, talents, capital and information. They not only support company's growth but also form solid foundation for headquarters economy centralizing in Tianhe District.
Among corporations with their headquarters established in Guangzhou, which are recognized in 2018, 149 of them, about one third, are located in Tianhe District. After analysing sectors of companies with headquarters in Tianhe, it is not hard to find out that most of them concentrate in finance, information software, technology services, and business & trade services, with respective percentage of 36.2%, 21.5% and 18.8%.This means the industry system of Tianhe featuring financial services, information technology and modern services as main drivers is basically in place. Report on the Work of Government by Tianhe District for 2019 comes up with an ambitious goal- to bring in over 15 companies together with their headquarters.
Tianhe CBD, one of the three CBD of national level in China gathers 73% of corporations with their headquarters settled in Tianhe. Recently, headquarters economy cluster of Tianhe CBD, Pazhou Exhibition Centre across Zhujiang River as well as Internet Innovation Cluster have been recognized and rewarded by Guangzhou.
From Eastern City Ring Road of Yuexue District, Northern part of Tianhe District, Zhujiang New Town, International Finance Centre to Science City, Knowledge City, and Huangpu Port Economic Zone, Huangpu has gradually rose to be the third headquarters economy centre during the two decades of Guangzhou eastward expansion.
At the moment, Huangpu has 97 corporations with their headquarters settled down there, second only to Tianhe. Most of them are in from advanced equipment manufacturing, technology research, technology services as well as business & trade services. Last year, facilitated advance of high-end projects in Huangpu District and Guangzhou Development Zone made these two areas key arenas for implementation of IAB and NEM plans. Three industry clusters valued at hundreds of billions including electronics, automobiles and chemicals have taken shape. Four large industry cluster valued at RMB 50 billion consisted of chemicals, food& beverage, metal manufacturing and bio-health sectors.
At the very beginning of this year, Huangpu district government proposed an ambitious goal on investment promotion assembly- to introduce 10 of top 500 companies, 30 major corporation headquarters as well as over 100 quality important projects.
As expected, in March this year, Cedar Holdings, one of the Fortune Global 500 companies, also decided to settle in Huangpu District. Cedar won the bid for commercial property development around Xiangxue Metro Station on the line and started to build on it finance headquarters, which, together with its headquarters completed are located in the Pioneering Avenue Headquarters Economy Corridor. Within a 5-km-long section of Science City, over 10 headquarters economy projects have been put in place, including China Southern Power Grid, Baoneng Group, Duoyi.com, Skyworth, Hitachi IT. It is expected that this section will grow to be the most important CBD of Science City and Huangpu District. Who dares to jump to a conclusion that there won't be another company from the top 500 list joining the pioneers on this Avenue worthy of its name?
Let's switch our focus from Pioneering Avenue to the Zhujiang Riverside. As development of the first 20 km of east riverbank line is coming to an end, 10-km-long riverbank line within Huangpu Port economic Zone, also known as the last 10-km-long golden line, will be made as the second CBD of Guangzhou. Huangpu, however, doesn't rest on its laurels as the second CBD. Instead, it determines to create an upgraded version of Guangzhou CBD.
Once unfolded, Guangzhou Map today shows clearly that in its eastern part a Zhujiang River golden riverbank belt is formed. All the way from Tianhe to Huangpu District, eastward along Riverside Avenue are Zhujiang New Town CBD, Guangzhou International Finance City, and Huangpu Port Economic Zone. This industry belt filled with high-end elements such as finance, trade & business, technological innovation, advanced manufacturing and talents stands to be the most eye-catching world class headquarters economy belt.
Source: Xinhua News Agency and OUTLOOK WEEKLY