Navigating Tradition and Innovation: A Learning Programme for European SMEs in the Furniture and Design Sector 

18. Mar. 2018
12:00 - 12:00
Registration Fee: 0,00 €

This learning circle is part of the CUBE IN project, funded by the Horizon 2020 Framework Programme of the European Union.

Maria Menzenbach
0049 851-988666-14

Who ist the target group? European SMEs in the furniture and design sector

When will this programme take place? From the 18th to the 23rd of March 2018

Why is it being organized? To help SMEs create innovation. Beyond that, participants will get the intercultural knowledge about Chinese business culture to enter the Chinese market.

How many participants will be allowed? Six to twelve (maximum) participants from different companies

Who is the organizer? The Executive Agency for Small and Meduum Sized Enterprises (EASME) commissioned icunet, the leading provider for intercultural consulting and global mobility with offices worldwide, to carry out learning circles in different emerging markets for various business sectors. So, be sure to look out for upcoming learning circles on other topics.

How much does it cost? Participation is free for selected participants. Only flights to and back from China have to be paid for by the participants.

Navigating Tradition and Innovation

Furniture and the Design Industry in China. A learning programme for European SMEs

What are the benefits for SMEs?

Building innovative internationalizing SMEs does not happen by chance. Internationalizing SMEs often focus on developed markets, such as the United States or the European union because they offer both a big market to grow the business, as well as seemingly familiar culture. But growing SMEs into business with global reach means reaching out to emerging economies. Here, the unfamiliar can feel overwhelming and the potential market more intimidating.

Concrete take-aways and added values of the program

  • better understand the business culture/consumer needs in China and learn how to do business in China
  • intense training and coaching nuggets on culture and innovation
  • learn how to innovate for your business in China
  • B2B opportunities and networking

Additional benefits

With the support of EASME and in consortium, technopolis group, Hofstede insights and icunet have developed a set of tools to help companies to become more familiar with the business cultures of various developing markets: An online library, a training and mentoring package and the learning circle in China.

Why China?

Furniture has its long tradition in China as well as its history. How to combine its traditional and modern aspects together is becoming a delicate topic in Chinese furniture designing nowadays. Maybe "made in China" can be sometimes "copied in China", but Chinese are characterized by their pragmatic and flexible way in design, which can give another viewpoint of creative work.

Your programme in China:

March 18th: Arrival

March 19th: Guangzhou - Finding the pulse of the emerging market: Guided visit to the 41st China international Furniture Fair and participation in panel discussions in the fair.

March 20th: Guangzhou - Finding the Pulse of the emerging market: Day 2 at the fair

Flight to Shanghai

March 21st: Shanghai - Experiencing the local heartbeat: Visit of Macalline Furniture Mall and a "typical" middle class home. A guided city tour to Tianzi Fang.

March 22nd: Shanghai - Idea Incubation: Speech and Exchange with a Professor at Tongji University and an Interios Editor at Sohu. Visit and networking at M50 Art Space. In the afternoon: intercultural coaching sessions and presentation about IPR in China.

March 23rd: Shanghai - Idea incubation: Coaching sessions and consultancy session.

Selection criteria and application process

Please get in touch with Maria Menzenbach ( of icunet. She will provide you with further details on the application procedure.

25% of the seats in each learning circle are reserved for EEN members and their companies. You are very welcome to get in touch with your local innovation and trade agency and ask about those specual seats.

The application procedure is open until Thursday, January 25th, 2018.


Participation is free for selected participants and includes board and lodging as well as all points on the program as well as transporation within China. Only the Visa and the flights to Guangzhou and back from Shanghai must be paid for by the participant.

Your Trainers in China:

Danting Cheng

Head of Training and Development ICUnet-Asia

+86 21 2898 6368
+86 138 1840 2019
Laura Mitchelson

Managing Director Asia

+86 21 2898 6363
+86 18512105306

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