LucaNet Goes East: LucaNet China Turns Ten!
When LucaNet was founded in 1999, the primary goal was to simplify the lives of accountants, controllers, and CFOs in the German domestic market with our software solution for consolidation, financial planning, and reporting. At that time, having locations in Great Britain, Singapore, or the USA was still a far-off aspiration. However, a lot has happened in the last 20 years and LucaNet offices can now be found in eleven countries. And with all false modesty aside – we are quite proud of what we have achieved over the last few years.
But with every new location that is tapped into new questions always arise: What language do we use to reach our customers better with our solution? And what does the local market situation look like on the ground? Is there any need for our FPM software at all?
Shiran Wang and Chi Zhang asked themselves these and similar questions when they returned to their home country in April 2010 to establish the LucaNet offshoot in Shanghai. But how did it all come about in the first place? What have the experiences with the Chinese customers been like? And to what extent is the COVID-19 pandemic affecting business at our Shanghai location? Take a look back with us over the last few years as LucaNet China celebrates its ten-year anniversary!
Back to the roots: a suitcase full of LucaNet
Be it financial consolidation, financial planning, or data management, Shiran and Chi were already very familiar with the LucaNet software, having worked as consultants at LucaNet AG in Mönchengladbach from 2007. Their business administration studies in Bochum provided the basis for a general understanding of enterprise-based financial processes, which ensured them a good combination of theoretical and practical know-how. And when they decided to return home in 2010, they simply took the LucaNet software with them!
“Growth at any cost is not how we do things.”
– Oliver Schmitz, COO of LucaNet AG
Oliver Schmitz, member of the executive board of LucaNet AG and responsible as COO, was optimistic from the beginning, but emphasized that LucaNet wanted to guide expansion into the new location in a sustainable way. Although the location had already been established in 2010, the actual market entry would only take place in 2011.
Dominik Duchon (member of the executive board of LucaNet AG and responsible as CSO) for whom the Chinese market holds great potential, was just as confident:
“Our mission is to set an international standard for controlling and consolidation. China is one of the interesting markets to make this mission a reality.”
– Dominik Duchon, CSO of LucaNet AG
Ni hao! We also speak Chinese!
Since Shiran and Chi originally come from China, they made short work of introducing the LucaNet brand back at home. In contrast to the German market, the Chinese market is self-contained, so that contacts are everything, especially when starting out. Shiran describes the Chinese market as follows: “Only those who know the right people really make it.” The presentation of the LucaNet software needed to be adapted to reflect this mindset. The Chinese LucaNet website is a good example of this.
To make sure that market entry was a success, a lot of preliminary work was necessary. Especially in comparison with competitors it became obvious that it would be a mistake to offer the software only in English. As a result, the LucaNet software had to be completely translated before the official founding of LucaNet Finance Consulting (Shanghai) Co., Ltd. took place on October 20, 2010.
And it was worth it! Shortly after the company was founded in 2010, Shiran and Chi were able to gain their first Chinese customer – Berlinwasser China Holdings. In the following years, the now more than 75 employees at the Chinese location can now count more than 100 companies among their customer base. Among them is the first Fortune 500 customer that our LucaNet software could win over in China.
“Going forward with partners” is the motto of LucaNet China
In addition to our customers, partners also play a significant role in the growth of LucaNet’s Chinese offshoot. These include knowledge partners such as PwC, EY, KPMG, Deloitte, Shinewing, Baker Tilly, and Dahua, as well as sales partners such as Isoftstone, Hand, and SiE. "Going forward with partners" is the motto that has spurred on the growth of LucaNet in China.
“Over the years, we have gathered comprehensive experience in accounting for Chinese companies. There, LucaNet software is primarily used to modernize financial management sustainably. Many companies from the financial consulting sector also use it as a software tool to develop suitable financial management solutions.”
– Chi Zhang, Managing Director LucaNet China
Last year, LucaNet China again acquired a total of 30 new customers and supports them in numerous financial processes – even despite these uncertain times and in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic.
How the COVID-19 pandemic affected LucaNet China
It goes without saying that the COVID-19 pandemic not only presents enormous challenges for European and American companies. COVID-19 also had a significant influence on financial planning for Chinese companies. However, Shiran and Chi managed to guide LucaNet China safely through the coronavirus crisis and even plan to hire five more consultants by the end of the year.
But strong growth also heralds change. This is why Shiran and Chi decided to bid farewell to their current office location to move into a larger space (by the way, the picture above in this article is the view from the new office!).
We wish LucaNet China all the best and are proud of its performance, our sustainable growth, and the fact that we offer significant added value for numerous companies!
“Many enterprises choose LucaNet because we provide them with capabilities in powerful data integration and flexible data processing.”
– Shiran Wang, Managing Director LucaNet China
The advantages of LucaNet’s FPM software
Nationally and internationally, the LucaNet FPM solution makes it easier for our customers to work with their financial data. More than 2,700 companies already benefit from these advantages:
- A single source of truth as opposed to several isolated applications
- 100% traceability and a comprehensive view of your financial data
- Maximum automation to make everyday business easier
- Detailed analyses that optimize the processes of the finance team
- Certified security according to ISO 27001 certification
Have we already won you over as well? You can find an overview of the LucaNet software and how all financial data are collected in one solution on our information page.