Business / Companies

Johnson & Johnson has the right formula for growth in China

By WANG HONGYI (China Daily) Updated: 2015-01-16 09:58

Johnson & Johnson has the right formula for growth in China

J&J aims to rely on innovation to make sustained gains in the Chinese market

Unlike most of its peers, Johnson & Johnson believes that it has the right formula for growth in China, notwithstanding the unique macroeconomic challenges particular to the region, including the country's sluggish economic growth.

No one knows this better than Jesse Wu, the chairman of Johnson & Johnson China. As the first local chairman of the US-based diversified healthcare giant, Wu has the formidable task of shepherding the company onto the path of sustainable development and achieving business expansion in China, amid complex challenges.

Wu admits that it is indeed a formidable challenge. "The Chinese economy has undergone enormous changes over the past two decades, and the fast-changing market as well as rapid shifts in consumer behavior are closely linked to the macroeconomic developments," he said.

The key to the Chinese market lies in building close connections with consumers and in constant innovation, says Wu, who has been working and living on the Chinese mainland for over two decades and has witnessed the rapid changes.

J&J is a household name in China because of the popularity of its baby care products like tear-free baby shampoo and other common household items like Band-Aids.

"During the past few years, J&J has focused on these aspects and strived to bring more innovative products to the market by listening to customers and by frequently upgrading technology. It is important that we understand the changes by reaching out and bringing in consumers as it gives a clear perspective of the diverse needs of various customers," he said.

To illustrate his point, Wu cites the examples of young mothers in China who have become very discerning and intelligent when choosing baby products. That marks a major departure from the trends seen during their mothers' generation decades ago, when babies were bathed with just a bar of soap.

"On the other hand, today, young mothers have a range of products and brands to choose from."

Even after two decades, Wu believes that his decision to join J&J China in 1994 was the best career decision he has made. "The China experience had a profound impact on my business outlook and in career development," he said.

"The experience of working in a rapid growth market provided me with the optimism that 'everything is possible.' I have matured and developed a more comprehensive perspective on leadership," he said.

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