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Reference No. 15/005C Publication Year 2015
Author(s) Steve Yang; Xiaoquan Chen; Choi Ling Yung; Qiao Zhang
Company Xiaomi
Industry Consumer Goods, Technology Hardware, Software and Services
Geographic setting China
Functional Area Strategy & General Management, Human Resource Management


In 2014 Xiaomi was honored as one of the top three smartphone producers in China, even though the company had only a short, four-year history. Xiaomi’s rapid rise captured public attention. Its sales reports indicated that 61.12 million of its smartphones were sold in 2014, an annual increase of 227%. Revenue in 2014 was US$74.3 billion, a yearly rise of 135%. Four years after the establishment of Xiaomi, the company had earned a substantial share of the Chinese smartphone market. Some observers considered Xiaomi’s distinguished culture the essential factor to the company’s achievements. This company’s “fan culture” and “sense of involvement” triggered the interest of other companies in the industry.

Learning Objective

Students will be required to summarize Xiaomi’s fan culture and discover both how Xiaomi’s CEO developed the culture and the culture’s rationale.  Students will also be required to analyze how Xiaomi passes on this culture internally, to employees, and externally, to “fans.”

Suggested Questions:

1. What is Xiaomi’s fan culture?
2. How and why did Xiaomi’s CEO establish this fan culture?
3. How does Xiaomi pass its culture on to internal and external stakeholders?
4. What is the impact of Xiaomi’s culture on the company’s business?

This case was fully supported by a grant from the Research Grants Council of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, China (UGC/IDS12/14).