China / English

Shanghai-Based Start-Up Promotes Green Thinking Among Chinese Internet Users

A large population, rapid industrialization and economic growth are taking their toll on China’s environment. The Shanghai-based start-up Greennovate wants to raise awareness of these ever-growing problems and promotes green thinking through a number of tailor-made projects and initiatives. Among the most long-standing ones is GECKO, a green e-learning platform aimed at developing a more sustainable lifestyle among students and businesses. Over the past five years, GECKO reached out to almost 25,000 Chinese students in 14 provinces. Greennovate employees traveled the country to promote the platform in high schools and universities.

Most Shanghai shoppers ‘unaware of pesticides in clothes’

The Shanghai-based start-up considers food and garment production a major cause for concern. Through its initiatives, Greennovate hopes to convince people to pay more attention to environmental problems. ‘There is a clear need for education among Shanghai shoppers’, says Flora Lan, Business Development Manager at Greennovate. She worries many people are primarily concerned with the price they pay in the store and unaware of the genuine labor costs, pesticides and the environmental damage caused by bleaching.

In cooperation with local businesses, such as M on the Bund, Greennovate developed action plans to educate management and staff. Flora thinks sustainability training can only be successful if everyone in the company, from the CEO down to the cleaning lady will be addressed. Greennovate’s most recent clients include the American car manufacturer Ford and the hotel management company Naked Retreats.

Social media plays key role in strategy planning

Greennovate’s tremendous success would have been unthinkable without social media. Through Facebook and Sina Weibo, China’s largest micro-blogging platform, Greennovate keeps track of clients and fans. Mihaela Hladin, Greennovate’s founder and CEO, says increasing fan and re-tweet numbers were due to seasonal content. In the two weeks prior to Chinese New Year, the Shanghai-based start-up launched a multichannel campaign against food waste, calling internet users to show more restraint during family banquets. In the near future, Greennovate wants to help companies with content management on social networking sites. Green consulting, Flora admits, has still a large, untapped potential in China.

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2 Comments

  1. I am a marketing student in Changshu (China).I hope you can give a talk about job hunting in Germany at our university as well. haha…

  2. Stephan Mayer says:

    Dear Dongmei,
    I am planning to give a speech in Shanghai about my job hunt in the coming 1-2 months. I have got your email and keep you updated!

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