Zuckerberg and Kalanick in China: Two Approaches

This week, two Silicon Valley titans buttered up Beijing. Mark Zuckerberg and Travis Kalanick worked two Chinese conferences, rubbing elbows with business and political leaders in an effort to open doors here.

I heard Kalanick speak at Boao Forum—a Davos-like confab of government leaders in Hainan, where I participated in two panels with fellow entrepreneurs and “media leaders.” And I followed Zuckerberg’s talk at the China Development Forum closely from Beijing.

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As Cook’s profile in China has grown, he’s dialed up the PR. He’s posed for photos with smiling workers at Foxconn. But he also snaps photos with employees at Apple Stores, not politicians.

More than being liked in China, Apple wants to be successful. Uber does too.

Ron Finberg commented on this article.
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He was otherwise his usual intense and cheeky self. He responded to a questions about whether he ever sell or leave Uber by saying, “You’re asking a happily married man who his next wife is.” The audience laughed.