By Alex Chiu, Caesar Ho, Eva Chen, Herbert Hsu | 2016
Hardware is hard
January 1st, 2016, Wistron launch a new department, iiC, which will be in charge of all the hardware-startup manufacturing business and directly report to the CEO. Hardware is hard, especially for startups who doesn’t have relevant experience ins manufacturing. Ethan Mollick, a researcher at the University of Pennsylvania who published a study showing that 75% of Kickstarter projects don't ship on time basing on his sample of 471 projects in the tech and design categories.
Wistron has the capability to help the startup to delver on time, however, most of the our Wistron teams used to serve global giant brands like Lenovo, Sony, and Dell, and the startup business is not contributing to revenue. Therefor, the launch of iiC indicates Wistron now values the importance of startups ecosystem, and is willing to put resources to try the new business model.
iiC, The result
The achievement of iiC is remarkable. More than 100 startups and 20 partners from different continents iiC approached in our first year. More than 10 projects has been awarded, and the service coverage ranges from early designing to design-for-manufacturing and to production in few thousand pieces. iiC will continue to work with global startup ecosystem and expand our footprint to more areas in the world, and be the important pusher of unicorns of the future.
Everything startup need is here at Wistron iiC
With the initial team of management level and senior experts in PM, ME, EE departments, we come up with the iiC structure consists of total five services including prototyping, manufacturing, marketing, after-service, and investment. With all the five resources in hand, iiC is able to work with startup at different stages with different needs. By leveraging iCA and other flexible supplier in manufacturing, we can provide the experience and knowledge in mass-production management at a reasonable quotation.
Business development from searching to working with startups
Since Wistron didn’t have a direct window works with startups before, iiC will need to start from scratch. We visits the platforms and conferences in Taiwan where startups will gather, we also go to startup hubs in universities to find potential teams to work with. I figured that there are also other stakeholders in the ecosystem, so we opens the dialogue with government programs, VC, and accelerators, and works with them to find the startup of best potential around the world.
With each time iiC work with startups we gradually learn how the ecosystem works, and progressively we learn what kind of startup we should approach. The portfolio now includes consumer electronics, STEM RC car, 3D printers, healthcare product, pet-cam, consumer and industrial IoT, etc., iiC has seen the wide spectrum of hardware startups, and we works and learns with them rapidly, and gains a pretty good reputation in a very short time in 2016.
Special thanks to all the partners in the ecosystem, and also thanks to the great team of iiC and Director Gem Hsieh and Elton Fang.
" More than 100 startups and 20 partners from different continents iiC approached in our first year. More than 10 projects has been awarded. "
How startup ecosystem works
How OEM & ODM works with startups
Different nature in B2B and B2C business
In a Nutshell
Being in the initial team of the first dedicated department in Wistron serving global startup companies, I design the strategy together with the management level and work across functions and manage the relationship with platforms.
More than 100 startups and 20 partners from three continents have been approached in the first year, and more than 10 projects has been awarded