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High-tech Smart Underwear

A novel piece of underwear combining advanced textiles and innovative wearable technology aims to solve the problem of urine loss, an issue that remains taboo although many women suffer from it.

Smart Machines and Aerospace

Machinery Industry Takes Aim at Trillion-Dollar Goal

For the past nine years, Taiwan’s machinery industry has tried to break the trillion- dollar mark in terms of annual output, but so far this challenge has proven insurmountable. This year might be different. Why?


Nobuyuki Idei: How Technology is Changing Society

As the real economy erects trade walls, the digital economy is forging a world without national borders and upending the economic system that has gradually taken shape in the 250 years since the start of the Industrial Revolution. How technology is changing society?How artificial intelligence and robots can be integrated into daily living? How countries should respond to the challenges brought by technology? Nobuyuki Idei, Founder and CEO of Quantum Leaps and former Chairman of Sony Corporation, gives an opening speech in 2017 CommonWealth Economic Forum (CWEF).

Pekka Soini, Director General of Tekes

Government Funding Encourages Companies to Take Risks

A self-described risk taker whose philosophy rests on encouraging imagination through play might seem more like PIXAR or Tesla than a government agency. But Tekes, Finland’s state funding agency, is different.

Moving into the Iot Age

Asian Silicon Valley Set to Take Off

The Asian Silicon Valley vision of President Tsai Ing-wen is starting to take shape with the help of two Taiwan-born Silicon Valley veterans who specialize in technology development and fundraising, but many challenges remain.

China Medical University Hospital

Doctors Use 3D Printed Models to Plan Surgeries

With the advance of medical technology, physicians need to communicate not only with patients but also with engineers. The definition of “professional" now includes being able to apply new technologies and keep up with technological progress.

Taipei National University of the Arts

Combining Art with Technology

The Department of New Media Art at TNUA hopes to train creative individuals who are equally adept at using the analytical-logical and artistic-creative parts of their brains.

Largan Precision Co. Ltd.

Full Order Books Despite Sluggish Apple Sales

Highly profitable smartphone camera lens maker Largan Precision Co. Ltd. is expected to see shipments soar if demand for dual camera smartphones doubles as forecast next year.

Exclusive Interview with Morris Chang

One Key to Success – No Unions

TSMC Chairman Morris Chang, one of Taiwan’s most respected business people, opens up in this interview with CommonWealth Magazine about the future of the high-tech and semiconductor sectors and the state of labor-management relations in Taiwan.


Spinning Waste into New Tires Raises Global Interest

Pile after pile of waste tires stacked in small mountains comprise a “Taiwanese landscape” that Enrestec is determined to eliminate. The company’s turning junk tires into new tires and toner cartridges has attracted global attention.

Embracing the Circular Economy

Don’t Call Me ‘Garbage’

Countries around the world are embracing the idea of a “circular economy” in which resources remain in use for as long as possible and nothing goes to waste. Taiwan was late to jump on the bandwagon, but a few companies are showing the way.

UA CEO Kevin Plank:

Chasing the Cheap is Being Lazy

On a recent visit to Taiwan, Under Armour (UA) CEO Kevin Plank warned Taiwan’s contract manufacturers: Cost cutting no longer results in any meaningful competitive advantage, as rapid innovation disrupts existing business models and revolutionizes manufacturing.

Nike CEO Mark Parker

The Power of Manufacturing Innovation

Nike has long been the powerhouse in the athletic apparel world. But now under pressure from Under Armour and other upstarts, it is relying on innovation to stay ahead of the pack, says Nike CEO Mark Parker in an interview with CommonWealth Magazine.

Investing NT$1 in EPS in the Future

Merida Putting Profits into Sponsorships

Merida resolved in 2011 to invest NT$1 in earnings per share to sponsor a Europe-based ProTour team, but it quickly discovered that materials, manufacturing, design, and branding were just as important as money in achieving success at the highest level.

Shun Chan Industry

Providing Traction for Usain Bolt

It’s a company most people have never heard of, but its manufacturing prowess rivals that of Taiwanese electronics giant Foxconn, and it supplies soles to nine of the world’s 10 biggest sports shoe brands. Here’s Shun Chan Industra’s story.

Anonymous Hidden Champions

'Made in Taiwan' Scores Olympic Gold

From badminton rackets to bicycles and soccer balls, "Made in Taiwan" sporting goods have reached the pinnacles of their respective fields and generated NT$500 billion in annual output. How do they plan to sustain their run of success?

Industry 4.0: Everest Textile

An Old Factory Grows a Brain

The first Taiwanese company to adopt Industry 4.0 is a textile manufacturer that’s been around for decades. It is hoping a NT$450 million investment in a new brain for its production complex will help it cope with the challenges of the information age.

Surround Sound from a Mobile Phone

Tricking the Brain into Hearing in Stereo

Four young people from Taiwan have created in the U.S. a breakthrough sound technology for producing stereo sound using a mobile phone, all without external speakers. Here's how they've done it.

Industry 4.0: Optima

Ahead of the Curve on Industry 4.0

Developed a decade ago but not ready for prime time until recently, Optima's "mass customization" line has the company riding high atop the Industry 4.0 wave.

Industry 4.0: BenQ

‘Taiwan’s Siemens’ Taking Shape

Multitasking production lines, machines that talk to each other, smart transporters that can call their own elevators – these futuristic scenes have become reality in Taiwan as the BenQ Group strives to emulate German giant Siemens.

Industry 4.0: Henning Banthien

Selling a New Revolution

The government-financed “Plattform Industrie 4.0” is the major promoter of the revolutionary Industry 4.0 concept in Germany. Platform chief Henning Barthien tells CommonWealth Magazine of the concept’s benefits and challenges.

Industry 4.0-A 58-Second Competition

The New Direction of Manufacturing

Fifty-eight seconds. That’s all it takes BMW to produce a customized car, Siemens to make a customized controller or Optima to make a customized bottle of perfume. Industry 4.0 is redefining how things are made and sold in the 21st century.

Industry 4.0: Ulrich Sendler

Revolutionary Change for SMEs

In an interview with CommonWealth Magazine, industrial visionary Ulrich Sendler expounds on the paradigm shift manufacturing practices are currently undergoing and how it will change our future.

NDC Chief Chen Tain-jy

Time for Government to Kindle Investment

A new government took power in Taiwan on May 20, and its top economic planner, Chen Tain-jy, is already feeling pressure to quickly energize an economy in the doldrums. His solution? Have the government take the lead in rekindling investment.

London's Creative Crowd – AI Talent

The Secret Weapon behind Microsoft and Hollywood

Though little known, most British tech companies have developed key technologies and are now attracting the attention of international tech giants. Taiwan, a smaller market like Britain, could learn a lesson from their low-profile approach.

The Race to Core Technologies

Can Taiwan Become a ‘Digital Island’?

Several emerging industries have risen up to ride the digital wave, but does Taiwan have what it takes to capitalize? If the country hopes to spawn a “Digital Taiwan,” it will have to integrate its strong “hardware” sector with new software.

Chien Lee-feng:

Taiwan’s Digital Ambitions Face Major Divides

Google Taiwan managing director Chien Lee-feng believes Taiwan has many advantages it can use in pursuing a digital future, but he says it needs to recognize them and put a priority on talent development if a “Digital Taiwan” is to emerge.

Taking the World by Storm

The ‘Internet Plus’ Craze

Anything, it seems, can be done or sold online, and Chinese vendors are betting big on “Internet Plus” and its scale, speed, and impact. But will it lead to a new wave of growth in China or end up as a money game that creates a major economic bubble?

Zhang Ruimin, CEO of Haier Group:

Start Businesses, or Leave

Fresh off its acquisition of GE’s venerable home appliance unit, Haier is now the world’s biggest home appliance brand. CEO Zhang Ruimin, at the helm since 1984, is taking bold steps as he sets out to “change the world.”

Taiwan's Flat Panel Leader

Innolux on the Comeback Trail

Five years ago, Innolux, Chimei and TPO Displays merged to become Taiwan's flat panel leader. The company then fell NT$530 billion into debt after a slump in the global display market, but teetering on the edge of bankruptcy, it somehow recovered.

Artificial Intelligence

The NT$16 Trillion Holy Grail

The artificial intelligence field is exploding, with companies, societies and countries all desperate to get in on the game. More than 1,000 startups have bet on the field and its NT$16 trillion market potential.

Robert Wong, Chairman of CMC Magnetics

AI Supports Corporate Decision-Making

For a company, profits and investments are like the black and white stones in the traditional game of Go. Which move should be made in the current situation? There is no harm in listening to what artificial intelligence has to say.

‘MIT’ the New Weapon of World No. 1s

Boutique Manufacturing Taking Hold

Taiwan’s manufacturing sector has long focused on low-cost contract manufacturing for major brands. But that’s changing as Taiwan now stands as a driver of innovation for well-known global companies such as Burberry, Victoria’s Secret, and Ferrari.

Hon Hai’s Bold Gambit

In Hot Pursuit of Japanese Treasure

Hon Hai Precision Industry, the world’s biggest contract electronics manufacturer, is close to acquiring Sharp of Japan. What is behind Hon Hai’s willingness to risk it all financially to take over the venerated but money-losing Japanese electronics giant?

CyberLink Spin-Off Perfect Corp.

Churning out World-Class Apps

CyberLink, the world’s leading multimedia software developer with notable products such as PowerDVD and PowerDirector, is staking a claim in the mobile Internet market.

The Rise of FinTech

Can Taiwan Make Up for Lost Time?

FinTech – financial technology – has become a hot trend in finance, but Taiwanese business schools have been slow to recognize its growing importance. A few prominent institutions are trying to change that, hoping they’re not too late.

Everest Textile

Taiwan’s First Textile Mill to Embrace Industry 4.0

Everest Textile President Roger Yeh has invested tens of millions of NT dollars to build Taiwan’s first intelligent textile production line. Yeh believes that, if Taiwan’s textile cluster is well-estasblished, there’s no reason to fear the red supply chain.

Post-Paris Climate Conference

Taiwan’s Major Emissions Challenges

Taiwan has made a “non-nuclear homeland” a priority. But with renewable energy technology and investment lacking and limits to energy-saving initiatives, Taiwan will find it hard to cut emissions, eliminate nuclear power and keep electricity prices low.

Low-Carbon Lifestyle:

More Than Saving Electricity

The Germans pay three times as much for electricity than the Taiwanese, yet Germany has been making great efforts to phase out cheaper nuclear power, investing instead in reducing carbon emissions and developing renewable energy sources. What can Taiwan learn from this?

Hiroshi Ishiguro:

Social Robots to be the Next Smartphones

The bionic robot designed by Japanese scientist Hiroshi Ishiguro can speak, act in a play and host a TV program. Aside from robots resembling human beings, Ishiguro has also released a simple companion robot that he predicts will become as indispensable to us in the future as smartphones

Taiwan’s New Strength: Industrial PCs

Protech and the Wisdom to Stay Home

Engel Wu has resisted the urge to pursue quick profits in China, instead staying in Taiwan to oversee Protech Systems’ transformation from the bleak PC industry to the opportunity-rich industrial computer (IPC) sector and its 50% margins.

Taiwan’s New Strength: Industrial PCs

Ennoconn – Beating the Goliaths of the Industry

Through mergers and acquisitions, strategic alliances and dedicated factories, the electronic manufacturing service provider Ennoconn Corp., a subsidiary of Hong Hai, has reinvented itself as a maker of customized industrial computers.

Taiwan’s New Strength: Industrial PCs

For Adlink, R&D Paying Big Dividends

Many of Taiwan’s PC makers are stuck in low-margin purgatory. Not Adlink Technology. Through its heavy investment in R&D, the industrial PC maker sells sophisticated products that generate solid returns.

Taiwan's New Strength: Industrial PCs

Despite recent economic downturns, one sector is managing to thrive. Industrial PCs, long unnoticed, are now seen as the future backbone of the emerging Internet of Things.

Taiwan’s New Strength: Industrial PCs

Advantech the World No. 1

Foreseeing the volatility of consumer electronics 10 years ago, Advantech Co. set its sights on industrial computers. The strategy now has it positioned at the forefront of Taiwan's – and China's–foray into "Industry 4.0" and the Internet of Things.

The Arrival of Solar Power

Solar energy trellises dotting farmland have formed a "crop and energy farming ecosphere" that only stands to get bigger with the imminent institution of electricity liberalization.

Taiwan's First 'Digital Life Survey'

Who Rules the Cloud?

In its first ever "Digital Life Survey," CommonWealth Magazine found Taiwan's Internet users to be among the most avid fans of social media across the globe, and have distinct online behavior patterns that will dictate how companies position themselves in the future.

Taiwanese Orchids to Bloom in Desert Countries

Last year, Taiwan's orchid growers exported potted orchids and seedlings worth NT$4.1 billion to 36 countries around the globe. Now they are eyeing the rich markets of the Middle East.

Agriculture Ministers Match Wits

Should the Government Take the Lead with Marketing?

The current minister of the Council of Agriculture and a former CoA minister have widely divergent views on Taiwan's agricultural development strategy.

Sizing Up the Atemoya Craze

Taiwan's Heavenly Gift in Peril

Taiwan has emerged as the world's biggest exporter of the custard apple-like fruit, the atemoya. But mindless competition among Taiwanese trading companies and dependence on China is threatening the riches derived from this heavenly gift.


Back from the Brink and Going Public

Foxsemicon Integrated Technology is going public after Terry Gou almost gave up on it. Here's how one of Gou's veteran generals took a perennial money loser and turned it into a semiconductor industry stalwart.

PTT Founder Ethan Tu

A 'Heavenly Dragon' Resurfaces

PTT was just the first stop on a magical software journey that has taken him to Microsoft, big data and even artificial intelligence. Currently working in the U.S., Ethan Tu is looking forward to the day when he harnesses Taiwan's "software power."

Cars of the Future

Sharing, a Global Trend

As carsharing services thrive in urban areas of the United States and Europe, major carmakers are scrambling to cash in on the new mobility services trend.

Cars of the Future

The Taiwan IT Sector's Next Act

Automotive electronics represent the IT sector's next major growth engine and an opportunity for Taiwan to transform itself. It's no wonder, then, that Taiwan's tech players are eager to find ways into the global automotive supply chain.

Cars of the Future

Turning Drivers into App Users

The convergence of communication technology, big data, and Cloud services with automobiles will totally reshape our "mobile" lives. Who will rule in the new era? And what role will Taiwan play?

Cars of the future

Who will Rule the Roost?

The automotive industry is currently embroiled in a fierce battle with the IT, telecommunications and Internet sectors for supremacy in the age of connected vehicles and new mobility solutions. As new paradigms begin to emerge, collaboration across sectors is the key to win.

'Made in China 2025'

How will Taiwanese Enterprises Cope?

What does it take to upgrade production and people's attitudes to meet the challenges of running a smart factory?

'Made in China 2025'

Decoding Beijing's Intentions

The entire world is engaged in a battle for innovation and transformation supremacy. Qu Daokui, one of China's foremost robotics experts, tells CommonWealth how China will go from the world's manufacturer to a manufacturing superpower.

Terry Gou Invests in Bio-med Devices

Hon Hai founder and chairman Terry Gou has donated huge sums for the establishment of a cancer treatment center as the company moves into the biomedical engineering industry.

Internet of Things Fever

Taiwan Betting on 'Big-Small' Model

Unable to tackle the Internet of Things alone, big Taiwanese electronics companies are building strategic alliances with startups to get in on the ground floor. Few are pursuing the opportunity more aggressively than Acer.

NT$10 Trillion Empire Dream

Terry Gou Eyeing Smart Cars

Taiwan's media has been infatuated with Terry Gou's courtship of Sharp. But his real priority is the smart electric vehicle market, a business he sees as essential to his dream of building a NT$10 trillion empire.

Toung Loong Textile

Stretchable Textiles in Vibrant Colors

Traditional yarn manufacturer Toung Loong Textile Mfg. Co. Ltd. stayed in Taiwan as industry peers flocked to China. Instead of competing on price, the company repositioned itself as a manufacturer of high-end premium yarns.

High-Tech Textiles

Tex-Ray Makes Microcomputers You Can Wear

A specialized thread developed in Taiwan that is used as material for Intel, adidas, Lululemon and Under Armor smart clothing is the secret weapon high tech firms here are relying on to introduce new related products.

Microsoft Changes Course

As it faces its fifth decade, Microsoft is making changes to compete with newer companies. Julia Liuson, corporate vice president at Microsoft, is at the forefront of the company's recent moves towards open-source software.

Taiwan's Industrial Waste Crisis

High-Tech Waste Out of Control

Waste generated by Taiwan's high-tech sector is being dumped indiscriminately around Taiwan, threatening the environment, people's health and the future of the high-tech sector itself. Has the situation reached a breaking point?

Taiwan's Industrial Waste Crisis

Mining Precious Metals from Sludge

Brightly colored sludge, saturated with various metals and other pollutants, is a shocking sight. But World Resources Company (WRC) sees in it a golden opportunity for mining riches.

Broadsound Corporation

Striking Fear in Big Ultrasound Vendors

As the only U.S. FDA-approved ultrasound replacement transducer maker, Taiwan's Broadsound Corporation has come to monopolize this niche market, and is now starting to worry global brands. Here's how the company has done it.

Doing it the Silicon Valley Way

Maisense Changing an Industry

With the support of senior executives from high-tech heavyweights TSMC and MediaTek, Maisense Inc. has developed an innovative blood pressure device that's changing the face of its industry. What's been its secret?

'Sponge' Communities Forging Roads that Breathe

If a city resembled a sponge, absorbing water from storms and saving it for droughts, would we have to worry about having enough water? One extraordinary road in Xizhi not only stores and purifies water, it even regulates its temperature.

The Liang Mong-song Story

Hunting Down a Turncoat

TSMC admitted at an investor conference on Jan. 15 that it has been overtaken in 16nm technology by Samsung. A big reason is Liang Mong-song, who sold out to the Korean company. Here's the story of what went down.

Safeguarding Trade Secrets

Taiwan's NT$2 Trillion Threat

Key employees of Taiwan's high-tech companies are defecting to Chinese and Korean competitors, threatening the country's competitive edge. Taiwan could learn from the United States in stemming the loss of vital trade secrets.


Call Us an Industry 4.0 Company

Once upon a time, Advantech was a big industrial computer firm; today, it aims to become a major player in the Industry 4.0 trend.

Tongtai Chairman J.H. Yen

Taiwan Has Yet to Master Industry 3.0

Tongtai Machine & Tool Co. Chairman J.H. Yen worries that Taiwan is lagging behind in the intelligent manufacturing race. But his company is showing how Taiwan's key machine tool industry can keep up with the global trend.

The Future of Manufacturing

Germany's Industry 4.0 Strategy

The Internet of Things, Big Data, cloud computing and artificial intelligence are changing how we live. Germany has now adopted a development strategy embracing those trends that it hopes will lead a revolution in how things are made.

Academia Sinica President Chi-huey Wong

Eyeing Cancer Research Breakthroughs

Seen by many as Taiwan's next Nobel Prize candidate, Chi-huey Wong has opened new avenues in drug research. What breakthroughs does he expect to see in the next few years?

Future Logistics

Carbon-Neutral Delivery by Drones

Deutsche Post DHL, one of the world's three largest courier companies, tells you how the logistics industry will look like tomorrow.

Top 10 Hottest Products of 2014

Looking back at 2014, other than a host of shiny new products, retro designs made a big comeback. Will this year's popular commodities blow over, or remain big sellers in the coming year?

The National Taichung Theater

Tackling the World's Most Challenging Building

Developer Wu Chun-shan has forged "a different road" in Taiwan's construction sector. That explains why he was willing to give the challenging National Taichung Theater a go when others weren't

Public Good X Creativity

Impact Hub San Francisco

After the 2008 financial tsunami exposed the destructive nature of vulture capitalism, a new breed of social entrepreneurs sprang up in Silicon Valley who champion collaboration and networking to make the world a better place.

New Creativity vs. Rigid Thinking

Taiwan’s ‘Innovation’ Challenge

Passionate, engaged, and raised on digital technology, Taiwan’s young generation is the most creative ever and becoming a social force. But an inflexible education system and organizationally rigid enterprises are having trouble keeping up.

NTU Creativity & Entrepreneurship Program

Cultivating the Next Morris Chang

University campuses are going all-out to cultivate students’ entreprenurial spirit and forge ecosystems to support entrepreneurship, so that students come for the creativity and leave to start their own businesses.

Asustek Computer

Getting Stronger by Getting Leaner

While rival Acer was busy acquiring companies abroad to boost market share, Asustek Computer Inc. was slimming down. It pared down its 11 business groups to just three, helping it become one of the world's top five computer brands.

Merry Electronics

Changing Up to Keep Chinese Threat at Bay

Merry Electronics fell to the depths after the global financial meltdown, battered by a changing smartphone industry and Chinese competition. But it survived by repositioning itself and playing to its strengths.

TSMC, MediaTek in the Bull's Eye

China's Semiconductor Grab

China is staking out an industrial policy of unprecedented ambition, creating a 120 billion renminbi fund to build an unrivaled semiconductor industry. How can Taiwan's semiconductor leaders stave off this huge threat?

Largan Precision

Secrecy: the New Competitiveness

Largan Precision has successfully fended off challenges from many rivals in the smartphone camera lens sector, including a Chinese upstart. The secret: secrecy itself and a sustained edge in technology.

The Kaohsiung Gas Explosions

The Price of Loose Bolts

LCY Chemical was one of the good guys in the chemical sector, recognized for its safety and environmental record. Why is it now the main suspect in the deadly explosions that rocked Kaohsiung?


Taiwanese Robots Invade China

A small enterprise named Idea is rapidly gaining favor in China's expanding automation sector, and pulling ahead of such industry giants as ABB and Delta.


Global Hotbed of R&D

China, Singapore, Korea and the US are all scrambling to set up R&D centers in Israel. They're also eager to uncover the country's latest technologies and poach its brightest talents. What puts Israel at the forefront of science and technology?

Greater China Top 1000

Chinese E-commerce Giants Surge

This year's CommonWealth Magazine Greater China Top 1000 Survey found that the competitiveness of Taiwan's companies continues to erode while Chinese e-commerce giants have remained on the ascendance.

Taiwan's Top 50 Performers

Niche Markets, Little Giants

Taiwan's top-performing enterprises of 2013 came from a wide spectrum of industries. What sets these hidden champions apart from the pack is unique key technologies and niche dominance.

Taiwan's Flat Panel Industry

500 Days to Survive

Chinese and South Korean display makers will soon launch eight production lines for large-size TV screens in China. How can Taiwan's leading makers of LCD TV panels survive this offensive? What are their counterstrategies?

Mitac Synnex Sets New Course

Mr. Merger's Cloud Atlas

Known in the industry as "Mr. Merger," Mitac Synnex Group chairman Matthew Miau struck again in February when he acquired IBM's customer service business, opening a new horizon for his company, and Taiwan.

Report from the Mobile World Congress

The Taiwanese Mobile Industry's Next Moves

Who says the mobile telecom industry only sells phones? Now they're selling everything from watches to cars. In a game that's constantly changing, what does the future hold for Taiwan's players?

Leaving Hsinchu Science Park Behind

Taiwan's Changing High-tech Center of Gravity

The global "hardware age" has faded, and with it the luster of Taiwan's Hsinchu Science Park. But new clusters are bubbling up nearby in four sectors, giving the country's tech center new life.

The Art of the Turnaround

Sony's Lessons for Acer, HTC

After years of heavy losses, Sony Inc. has returned to profitability and declared itself ready to take on Apple and Samsung. What can Taiwan's struggling brands, Acer and HTC, learn from Sony's revival?

Hon Hai

The Yogyakarta Move

After sealing a five-year deal to make BlackBerry smartphones, Hon Hai Precision Industry Co. has dropped another bombshell: It's setting up shop in Yogyakarta, Indonesia. What's the appeal of this laid-back second-tier city? For one thing, workers there don't go on strike.

Reeling in Google with Technology

Himax Rises from the Ashes

The most important component for Google Glass is being made by Taiwan's Himax Technologies, a company that some gave up for dead two years ago. How did it come up with the technology that Google now covets?

Google Inc.

Taiwan's Love/Fear Dilemma

Taiwan's NT$4 trillion IT hardware sector and 2 million engineers are being profoundly influenced by Google, coming to rely on it for their futures. CommonWealth Magazine takes a journey to see how healthy that dependence is.

Google Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt

The Race to Define the Future

Love it or hate it, Google inspires a wide range of emotions because of its commanding position in the new digital age. Eric Schmidt recently took on some of the questions and doubts when he was in Hong Kong.

Barclays Capital's Kirk Yang:

Mergers the Only Way for Taiwanese Tech Sector

Do the flagging fortunes of Acer spell peril for Taiwan's entire tech sector? The chief technology analyst at Barclays insists the dangers are real, and the solutions may need to be radical.

Is Branding Still for Taiwan?

Acer's Warning

Of the world's top 100 brands, only 10 percent come from small countries. Do Acer's woes prove that Taiwan or other countries without big domestic markets have trouble supporting their branding dreams?

Prof. Ji-Ren Lee:

New Blood Needed to Effect Change

In the age of mobile devices, the sun no longer shines on the once mighty PC makers of Taiwan. In this exclusive interview, National Taiwan University professor of management Ji-Ren Lee ponders how Taiwan's high-tech sector can achieve another revolution.

Acer's Fateful 1,000 Days

Hijacked by Success

After three straight years of losses, Acer recently decided to reshuffle its management. Founder Stan Shih has been called to the rescue, but can he really save the floundering company?

MediaTek Chairman Tsai Ming-kai

Breaking the Taiwan High-tech Mold

MediaTek Inc. ranked third in CommonWealth Magazine's survey of "Most Admired Companies" this year. And for good reason, as "MTK Inside" has become a third force in the smartphone industry behind only Samsung and Apple.

2013 Most Admired Company Survey

Innovators under Pressure

In 2013 new champions emerged in more industries than ever before. With ambition, courage, tenacity and innovation, Taiwan's new standard bearers deftly navigated rocky economic waters to sail ahead of the pack.

Dancing with Chinese Wolves

Compal Electronics’ Risky Gambit

Taiwan-based Compal Electronics has been bashed as "quenching its thirst with poison" for teaming up with two major Chinese brands. But Compal president Ray Chen felt he had no other choice and sees his company as coming out on top.

Electric Vehicles

Why Did Taiwan Lose Tesla?

Taiwan was for a time the manufacturing base for Tesla Motors, supporting the electric car maker's rise. What made Tesla turn its attentions elsewhere, and what does it mean for Taiwan's electric vehicle industry?

Electric Vehicles

Can Taiwan Go it Alone?

Does Taiwan stand a chance of building its own homegrown electric car? The niche market for electric buses may provide an opportunity for building brands and honing technological skills.

Acer, HTC

Taiwan's Big Brand Blues

Acer has suffered huge losses, and HTC has seen NT$900 billion in market value evaporate over the past two years. Why is the branding dream of Taiwan's high-tech sector crumbling?

3D Printing

Conjuring Your Imagination

Once upon a time, casting a mold for a new product could take weeks. Now, your model is ready in 10 minutes. A competitive revolution for small companies, 3D printing could nullify the edge of the big corporations.

Greater China Top 1000

Crossing the Strait of No Return

China boasts 10 times more resources than Taiwan, and 100 times the limelight. But once a Taiwanese exec has made the move to China, they often find no way back. How can Taiwan retain its native talent?

2013 Top 2000 Survey

Taiwan's Top 50 Performers

Several relatively obscure companies serving Taiwan's domestic consumers defied the economic malaise of 2012 to join high-tech enterprises among the year's top performers.

Top Manufacturing Enterprises 2013

Riding Technology, Flexibility to Success

In 2012 Taiwan's manufacturing sector saw revenues and profits fall, but some companies are fighting back and reversing the tide with technology and innovation.


Everybody’s Partner

Fabless semiconductor giant Qualcomm has a hand in a third of Taiwan’s high-tech exports. In an exclusive interview, CEO Paul Jacobs discusses the company’s business model, its partnership strategy and its relationship with Taiwan.

Intai Technology Corp.

Surgical Precision in the Making

This erstwhile mechanics shop slowly evolved into a leading maker of precision devices, and an important supplier for Johnson & Johnson. Now it has launched a brand of its own.

Morris Chang's Grand Alliance

TSMC Takes On Samsung

Its stock price soaring and profits at an all-time high, TSMC has mobilized a "Grand Alliance" to battle vertically integrated Samsung and Intel. In an exclusive interview, Chairman Morris Chang explains how.


The Bulwark of the Facebook Empire

Quanta servers, made in Taiwan, are the unseen strength facilitating Facebook’s billion-user empire. Now Quanta is edging past Dell to stake a claim on one-seventh of the global server market.

Hon Hai

Quartermaster of the Apple Empire

Hon Hai’s alliance with Apple rakes in NT$8 trillion in operating revenue a year. With Apple's sales in decline, Hon Hai boss Terry Gou is betting heavy, in an effort to sustain a relationship that accounts for 70 percent of its profits.

AU Optronics

Eat Your Veggies, Get an iPad

When this leading display maker discovered that half its employees were overweight, it revolutionized the company dining hall, labeling each dish with an intelligent flat-panel display.

Third-party Online Payment Services

Now Everyone Can Be a Boss

With money transfer volume expected to reach 10 trillion renminbi per year, online payment platforms are big business, and Taiwanese banks are eager to get their piece of this rapidly growing pie.

Taisys Technologies

Turning a Shack into a Financial Center

A revolutionary membrane no thicker than tin foil is enabling people around the world, from the plains of Africa to Chinese townships, to use their mobile phones for a stunning range of transactions.

HTC Fights Back

Rise of the Butterfly?

Squeezed by giants Apple and Samsung, HTC is fighting back with its new Butterfly, hoping to establish itself as the "third force" in the global smartphone market.

TPV Technology's Jason Hsuan

The Taiwanese Xi Jinping Knows Best

CEO Jason Hsuan has built TPV Technology into the world's fourth-biggest LCD TV maker, keeping profitability up in a highly competitive mature market. How has he done it?

Taiwan Mobile

Gaining the Edge with Service

After a seven-year hiatus, Taiwan Mobile has reclaimed the title of benchmark enterprise in the telecom services sector. Amid a sour economy and an industry paradigm shift, which strengths helped it topple Chunghwa Telecom?

Everlight Electronics

Battling to Light Up the LED Market

Everlight Electronics has relied on branding to build a leading position in the domestic LED industry but is now feeling the squeeze as competition heats up.

Food Scarcity Solutions

High-tech Urban Ag: Plant Factories

While food prices soar, Taiwan's veteran technology players are quietly opening farming operations underground, raising vegetable crops and cultivating a new green revolution.

Greater China Top 1000

Tapping China's Consumer Goldmine

State-run enterprises lead the pack in China, and electronics and IT rule the roost in Taiwan. Meanwhile, Taiwanese businesses are successfully grabbing a piece of the growing Chinese consumer market.

Global Brand Challenges

HTC Struggles through a Bottleneck

Hurt by patent defeats and errant strategies, HTC has suffered through two gloomy quarters. CEO Peter Chou reveals four changes his company is making to right the ship.

Taiwan-Japan Synergy

Hon Hai: Sharp's New Pass to the World

Long the standard-bearer of the global LCD panel industry, Sharp has fallen on hard times. But it has been given new access to the global supply chain by teaming up with the Taiwan-based Hon Hai Group.

Miniwiz Founder Arthur Huang

From Trash to Treasures

Miniwiz Sustainable Energy Development Ltd. is turning waste into stylish, environmentally friendly products. Founder Arthur Huang, mastermind of the much-heralded EcoARK, has an ambitious goal to "let trash be reborn."

Corporate Succession

Grooming Starts at 35

Throughout the global business community, General Electric is renowned for its prowess in cultivating leaders. Jason Hsu, CEO of GE Taiwan, shares his company's secrets to succession.

Corporate Succession

Morris Chang's Last Hurrah

In this exclusive interview, the chairman and CEO of semiconductor powerhouse TSMC outlines his final strategic move: a triumvirate of co-COOs to undertake a smooth leadership transition.

Corporate Succession

The New CEO: Breeding the Rare Bear

What kind of organizational inertia can cause a bumpy corporate succession? Management professor Lee Ji-Ren shares the four keys to a seamless leadership transition.

CommonWealth Economic Forum

I Don't Do Big – Just Strong

Broad Group CEO Zhang Yue talks about his unique “green” road to success.

CommonWealth Economic Forum

The SoLoMo Era is Here!

Face to face: Rose Tsou of Yahoo Asia-Pacific and Charles Chao of Sina Corp. consider the digital future.

2012 CommonWealth Economic Forum

The Search for Well-being in Asia

The 2012 CommonWealth Economic Forum gathered Asia's academic and business elites to discuss the region's future and explore the ideas of economic well-being and sustainability.

The War of the Tsais

Taiwan's Looming Digital Battle

Two of Taiwan's wealthiest families are vying for dominance of the digital convergence market and the systems that deliver digital content. How will their battle for supremacy affect the average household?

The Broadband Battle Begins

National Competitiveness

Digital convergence is now viewed as a key economic indicator when comparing nations' competitiveness. As the world races to make broadband Internet universally available, what must Taiwan do to keep apace?

No-cost Smartphones a Pipedream No More

Smartphones and tablet computers with tiny dimensions but full of features are forecast to become the "hottest ticket" in the IT industry. This while an "M-shaped smartphone market curve" is expected to become the defining trend in this sector.

2012: Fragile Recovery in Store

Taiwan Looks Inward for Growth

Export-oriented Taiwan is hoping to keep 2012 GDP growth above 4 percent, but with major economies around the world stagnant, domestic demand will be the key.

Domestic Demand Reshuffles the Deck

2010 Most Admired Company Survey

Taiwan's growing domestic demand has invigorated the market. And in an unprecedented move, Fubon Financial Holding voluntarily relinquishes its top spot.

Taiwan Makes a Stand in the Talent War

2011 Most Admired Company Survey

Taiwan's top-level talent is being seduced away by high pay offers, forcing the country's most admired companies to use emotional appeals to hold on to their prized executives. Is the strategy working?

Blinds Maker Embraces Independence

Paper Fabric Enterprises

Taiwan's biggest blinds maker Paper Fabric had enough of being jerked around by big buyers. So it decided to develop its own brand and distribution network. How has the bold strategy worked?

New Race for 0.8-Inch Notebooks

Battle of the Ultra-Thins

With its MacBook Air, Apple fired the first salvo in the ultra-thin notebook war. Intel fired back with its Ultrabook. Behind the lighter loads in our briefcases, a battle is being waged, and some Taiwanese companies may be the big winners.

The Mobile Device Wars

Taiwan Takes a Shot at Apple

In the huge battle shaping up between Google and Apple, Taiwan's high-tech heavyweights are on the front line. The anti-Apple camp must fight three fronts, and stay mindful of other rivals lurking on the sidelines.

Want to Beat Apple?

You'll Need to Jump 3 Hurdles

Although smartphones operating on the Android system have surpassed iPhone in terms of quantity, Apple remains the undisputed profit king. Those seeking to surpass Apple must first surmount three barriers.

The Mobile Device Wars

Rise of the B-Listers

In the fight for mobile electronic device supremacy, Taiwan's second-tier manufacturers are quietly staking a claim. Collectively, these "B-Listers" now account for a share of the tablet PC market second only to Apple.

HTC Takes on Apple

From High-Tech Force to Fashion Brand

Geek engineers meet hip hop stars – the unlikely pairing is helping Taiwanese smartphone maker HTC transform into a lifestyle brand, in a bid to counter U.S. high-tech giant Apple's dominance of mobile software applications.

Sumika Technology Co., Ltd.

Turning Wastewater into Eco-Ponds

With a fully localized corporate social responsibility program and exhaustively specific digital reports, Sumika sets the CSR standard for foreign companies in Taiwan.

ScinoPharm Taiwan Ltd.

From Sugar Cane Field to Biotech Star

ScinoPharm Taiwan Ltd. is Taiwan's biggest player in active pharmaceutical ingredients. By taking on the toughest challenges, it has turned itself into an indispensable force in the international pharmaceutical supply chain.

Smartphone Chipmaker Qualcomm

A Love-Hate Dance with Taiwanese Tech

It's tucked away inside the smartphone in the palm of your hand. Striking while the iron is hot, Qualcomm is looking not only to gobble up the smartphone chip market, but now is also taking aim at the entire digital household.

Goodway Group

Cutting-edge, to Be Precise

Originally saddled with a mountain of debt and housed in a corrugated metal shed, the Goodway Group has become the world's fourth largest precision machine tool maker, with a market value of NT$7 billion.

Delta Electronics

Mining Gold in the Clouds

IT powerhouse Delta Electronics is chalking up gross profit margins in excess of 20 percent – a level many Taiwanese tech companies can scarcely dream of – and they're doing it by moving toward higher-value "green power systems integration" services.


The Glue that Makes Gadgets Ultrathin

TeamChem is the first Taiwanese company that managed to break into the Japanese monopoly on the cutting-edge adhesive film that is replacing thicker connectors in electronic gadgets. Without it the new iPad would not be as slim and sleek as it is.

Terry Gou's Apple Challenge

Keeping the Hon Hai Empire Together

Employee suicides. An explosion at an iPad 2 production facility. Hon Hai's empire is being stretched to the limit. Can the company and its iron-fisted chairman Terry Gou meet the challenge?

Challenging Apple with a Tournament of Ideas

Taiwan's smartphone powerhouse HTC now stands as the surest check on Apple's dominance. With its orders expanding by leaps and bounds, can HTC keep focused squarely on innovation and divine what the consumer demands?

The Age of Value Marketing Has Arrived

The sales and profits of Taiwan's top 1,000 companies hit three-year highs in 2010. The secret to their success? Winning customers' hearts in an age when consumers are pricklier than ever.

Case Studies in App Application

Tablet Apps Take Over the World

The ubiquitous Apple iPad is bringing revolutionary changes to education, music, business and even hair styling. Just step out of the house and you'll realize that tablet computers have already quietly changed the world around you.

The iPad Earthquake

Who Will Survive the Tablet PC War?

Tablet computers have taken the world by storm since Apple introduced the iPad last April. What kind of unpredictable opportunities will this new craze spawn, and who will emerge as the winners?

Lean Startup: Saja Online Auction

Grasping Human Nature, Seizing the Day

Squatting in a university library for a year to make use of free Internet access and utilities, three college friends had a rough start. But soon they achieved a revenue stream, and broke even within a month. How did they do it?

Stan Shih:

Where the Prospects Lie

One of Taiwan's senior figures in the IT industry grapples with the challenges of innovation, application and economy of scale in the emerging age of cloud computing.

Lean Entrepreneurs

Starting Up with Nothing Down

Online startups with little investment are leading a global revolution that could give unknown Taiwanese entrepreneurs the chance to sparkle internationally. What can they do to ride this wave?

Ying-Ming Junior High School

Electronic Whiteboards Open 'Anywhere Door'

Electronic whiteboards have made classes at Kaohsiung's Ying-Ming Junior High more lively and interactive, transporting students back in history, over mountains and across seas, as if stepping through Doraemon's "Anywhere Door."

Jianguo High School

Tempering Science with the Human Spirit

Taiwan's oldest public high school also scores the greatest scientific accomplishments. Yet it is dedication to the liberal arts and commitment to service that give the students a balanced introduction to their world.

Vivotek Inc.

Network Camera Maker Shines in Chilean Miner Rescue

In the darkened depths 600 meters beneath the Earth's surface, a video link provided through a Vivotek network camera brought undying hope to countless frantic relatives on the surface throughout their ordeal.

Taiwan's Most Admired Entrepreneurs

Soft Power Affirmed: Cher Wang Joins the Top 10

Some new faces have emerged among Taiwan's Most Admired Entrepreneurs, as the rise of Cher Wang and Stanley Yen symbolize an increasing recognition of Taiwan's soft power.

AUO's Legal Woes

Antitrust Cloud Hangs over IT Industry

AU Optronics executives have been barred from leaving the U.S. in an antitrust case. Many other Taiwanese IT companies could face similar legal tussles. How should they respond?

Hack Attacks

We're All Potential Victims

An average of two Taiwanese are ripped off every hour due to personal data theft. Yet what may be the island's most rampant crime is seldom successfully prosecuted. How can we avoid being hacked in the digital age?


Organic, Sustainable... Profitable

To counter both climate change and the threat of agricultural imports from China, Taiwan's farmers are switching to healthful, sustainable farming methods, creating new green business opportunities.

Clayton Christensen, Shih Chintay

Disruptive Innovation – How Taiwan Can Win

The Harvard business scholar who pioneered the concept of disruptive innovation considers the future of change in the global economy, and the opportunities that may lie in store.

Steve Chen

Launching China's ‘Medical Cloud'

Taiwan native and supercomputer wiz Steve Chen has now set up a medical cloud for China's poorest regions, and some big Taiwanese high-tech vendors want in.

2010 Top 1000 Enterprises

Thriving through Flexibility

The global financial crisis claimed plenty of casualties in Taiwan, but its top enterprises brandished one critical asset that helped many of them thrive: flexibility.

The '2.5 Generation' Industry

Kenmec: Automating Taiwanese Industry

With one foot in the electromechanical industry and the other in the service sector, Kenmec's industrial automation services allow customers to optimize processes for markedly higher profits.

The '2.5 Generation' Industry

ACS: Making Factories Smarter

Its business is hard to describe, but many petrochemical, steel and technology companies can't do without it. Advanced Control & Systems has a lock on large-scale factory upgrades, spinning a fortune out of intelligent plant service integration.

Taiwan's Next Mainstream

The '2.5 Generation' Industry

Often overlooked because they cannot be conveniently pigeonholed, these shadow warriors have long been consulted by the likes of mogul Terry Gou. Who are they?

TSMC's IP Settlement with SMIC

Why TSMC Showed Mercy

When Taiwanese chipmaker TSMC chose to settle out of court with China's SMIC for IP violations, it spared its rival from a potentially ruinous lawsuit, and in the process gained far more for itself.

Business Strategy Takes a Major Turn

Expansion through Attack

With the rise of hot money and shrewd corporate financing, Taiwan's no-frills growth model has given way to a new expansionary game of acquisition. What capabilities will companies need in order to wage battle in this new environment?

Taiwan's Three Bright Spots

Where do Taiwan's opportunities lie amid the rising tide of eco-friendly business? Who will be the winners, as everyone struggles to grab a piece of the promising green industry pie?

Former Sony Chairman Nobuyuki Idei

Decade of Struggle, Decade Chasing Dreams

The man who led Japan's biggest brand into the new millennium at the helm of Sony is a most un-Japanese executive. Guided by the inner rebel he kept bottled up all those years, Nobuyuki Idei seeks to lead Asia into a new era of innovation.

Yahoo's Great Transformation

Dancing with the Enemy

Feeling the squeeze from microblogs and web-based communities, Yahoo is fighting back – with open arms, and a centralized strategy that puts Yahoo Taiwan on the global stage. But will it work?

Who's Taking on Yahoo?

The New Showdown on the Web

In Taiwanese cyberspace a myriad of fledgling community websites are challenging the dominant position of big Internet portals like Yahoo. Can Yahoo Taiwan keep its grip on the island's Internet users?

Taiwanese Tech's Hunt for a New Front

Why Are the Big Bosses Feuding?

Taiwan's tech sector has recently been roiled with strife. Terry Gou and Barry Lam, Bob Tsao and K.Y. Lee... sworn partners have become completely estranged. Behind the discord lies a high-tech mid-life crisis.

Quanta's Barry Lam:

Heading Not for Blue Ocean, but the Clouds

Quanta Computer chairman Barry Lam is embracing his "new 3Cs" with fierce determination. How does he intend to perform this "final movement"?

2009 Most Admired Company Survey

Thriving in Turbulent Times

Six industry leaders among the most admired in 23 sectors were dislodged from their perches in 2009 by more agile competitors who found ways to overcome the global economic slump.

Electronic Books

Who Can Translate Kindle into Chinese?

Amazon's successful e-book reader Kindle has sparked a worldwide craze. Now major Taiwanese companies are hoping to get in on the action. Will any succeed in this fierce contest to create a Kindle for the Chinese-speaking world?

IBM Taiwan

Three Mechanisms for Grooming Leaders

IBM's human capital management program systematically sifts its talent pool, shores up the skills that leadership candidates lack, and prepares a comprehensive succession plan. What lessons can Taiwan's companies learn?

Taiwan's Corporate Succession Crisis

Taiwan's 30 largest corporations represent a market value of NT$13 trillion. Yet 40 percent of them have not planned ahead for a smooth corporate succession. Should their millions of shareholders and employees be worried?


All the Right Plurks

The Plurking craze has swept over to Taiwan's business sector. And BenQ's affable avatar Ah-Ji the Lion has done particularly well cozying up with Netizens. What is BenQ's secret formula for social media success?

Fortune Motors

Mining Facebook for 40% of Sales

How did a twentysomething salesman with few personal connections make use of the Internet to establish a customer base stretching from Taipei to Jiayi, and rise to the top ten in a sales force of more than 500?

Social Media

The Might of Online Communities

The explosive growth of online social networks and the rise of microblogging tools like Twitter and Plurk signal a new marketing revolution that challenges conventional advertising.

AU Optronics

Saving Water Helps Environment – and Bottom Line

To cope with Taiwan's uncertain water supply, AU Optronics has made water conservation an integral part of its flat panel fabs. How have they approached the problem and what's the real payoff?

Russia's IT Industry

Rising Software Superpower

Just as Kaspersky is occupying the top perch in the anti-virus industry, Russian software seems to be taking over the world, with Taiwanese handset brands and OEM manufacturers counting among their major customers.

Russian Brainpower

Russian Brainpower

After the breakup of the Soviet Union, the world swept in to scoop up Russia's skilled engineers and scientists. Now they have not only become behind-the-scenes movers and shakers in the global tech industry, they are also the key to Russia's resurgence.

Green Vehicles – Japanese Edition

Prius: Toyota's Green Parachute?

Toyota for the first time ranks as the world's number-one automaker, yet it faces declining market demand. The hybrid Prius is its only model bucking that trend. Is the eco-friendly car the shot in the arm Toyota desperately needs?

Green Vehicles – German Edition

Mini E Leaves Conventional Cars in the Dust

Luxury carmaker BMW developed a hip electric car in less than a year. A replica of the British cult car Mini Cooper, with a battery made in Taiwan, the Mini E boasts an acceleration faster than most combustion-engine vehicles.

Green Vehicles

China: Tomorrow's Green Car King?

China's brand of low-price disruptive innovation will soon challenge car markets everywhere as it aspires to become the global leader in energy-efficient vehicles.

Green Vehicles

Taiwan Goes for the Globe

With a components industry specializing in electrical machinery, Taiwan stands poised for a leading position at the heart of the rising electric vehicle industry. The next step will be independent brands and entry into new markets.


Playing at the Big Table

Epistar, Taiwan's largest manufacturer of light-emitting diodes (LEDs), has seen its share price rise far above its peers. Now it is boldly entering the advanced stage of competition, with its sights set on spearheading industry transition.

Everlight Electronic Co., Ltd.

Leadership through Precision

Keeping an eagle eye on every detail has made Everlight Electronic the profitability leader among LED packagers. With its "tough love" leadership, what will Everlight's next step be along the road to "green lighting"?


From Lighting to Delighting

Embracing the irreversible transition from incandescent light bulbs to LEDs, Philips secured itself an excellent position by buying up a number of leading players in the lighting industry.