Reverse Innovation and the Advantage of Leveraging China’s Ecosystem – Gululu Featured at “Cannes Lions Festival of Creativity”

CANNES, France, June 22, 2017 — Gululu, the world’s first interactive water bottle that keeps kids hydrated, was honored to be featured at “Lions Innovation“, as part of the – “2017 Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity”. Mr. Alvin Chiang, Founder and CEO of Bowhead Technology that created Gululu was invited to address the audience of innovators on the theme of “Recalibrating the Definition of Innovation”. Mr. Chiang shared his own journey of how he started as an internet marketer for some of China’s most innovative and progressive startups, and turned into a tech entrepreneur and startup founder who was able to leverage China’s emerging innovation talents with its highly advanced and efficient manufacturing ecosystem to bring Gululu to life and impact kids hydration habits worldwide.

Mr. Chiang is no stranger to Cannes Lions. In 2013, he was invited to be a Lions Festival Cyber Juror, a lifetime honor, and was inspired by the power of creativity of over 1000 innovators from across the globe. Mr. Chiang continued to participate in the festival annually and in 2016, was able to harness user feedback from the festival’s network of delegates to refine Gululu’s final prototype before pilot production in 2016. 

With over 60 years of history, Cannes Lions was established to be the world’s most prestigious festival that celebrates traditional advertising, but has evolved to showcase a wide-range of marketing and brand creativity; digital, mobile, health, and entertainment innovation; and an even broader range of tech-infused and data-driven ingenuity. In 2017, the Lions “Innovation” category alone hosted more than 15,000 delegates from over 5000 companies representing 90 countries.  China has steadily become a more significant presence in the festival.  As an innovative Chinese entrepreneur, Alvin Chiang was honored to share the same Inspiration Stage with other cutting edge startups such as Olly Robotics, and tech savvy celebrities such as Halle Berry and Casey Neistat.

Mr. Chiang attributed much of Gululu’s progress to his team and partners in China, including Foxconn, a premier contract manufacturer used by some of the greatest tech companies in the world, such as Apple Inc. .  Mr. Chiang noted, “Not only does China have the world’s biggest advantage in manufacturing resources and speed of development, it’s also growing a new generation of Chinese entrepreneurs who are demonstrating increasing confidence and ability to navigate uncharted territories, instead of copying from the West like their predecessors. This “Reverse Innovation” is a growing trend in which companies from the West are learning from and modeling themselves after companies from the East”. 

Here at Cannes, Alvin also talked about his views on how transformational technologies are changing humanity and merging with human bodies biologically and neurally, in a documentary and book project called “Merge” spearheaded by PHD, a futuristic-thinking media agency under the Omnicom Group, in collaboration with Ray Kurzweil, the founder of Singularity University and a world renowned inventor, author and futurist.       

“Cannes Lions is all about celebrating creativity, after all” Mr. Chiang added. As per his secret sauce for creativity, he believes more creativity and innovation will come from a cross-over or hybrid of two different genes, but those who will survive and thrive will be the ones who really solve a problem leveraging the new trends and managing to cross the gap between early adopters and the mainstream market.    

Gululu also created a campaign at Cannes Lions that generated user social shares, examples attached.

About Gululu

Gululu is an interactive water bottle and app that helps children and parents keep up with hydration by caring for a virtual pet. The learning-through-play mechanism is powered by smart technology as well as social interaction. Designed for ages 3+, the bottle is shockproof, health-focused, and kid approved. Since its launch in summer 2016, news of Gululu has traveled to over 20 countries, and has been featured in USA Today, Vogue, and Buzzfeed, among others. Forbes magazine named it 1 of the 5 coolest water bottles worldwide. Gululu is available on Amazon Exclusive, and was recently launched exclusively on Alibaba’s Tmall, China’s most trafficked and premium online shopping site. The company has branches in California, Tel Aviv, Shanghai, and Taipei, with founders hailing from Alibaba, IDEO, HP, & Intel. Gululu recently closed its series Pre-A investment round, led by a new fund established by Jonathan Lu, the former Alibaba Group CEO.

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