Top 10 manufacturing hubs based in Shanghai

Apple, Volkswagen, Bright Food, ABB, Tesla, Baosteel Group, Fosun Group, Yotex Apparel and General Motors - here’s our Top 10 Shanghai manufacturing hubs

This week, the government of Shanghai, a city of 25mn, ordered all factories to suspend their manufacturing during a city-wide lockdown to prevent the spread of COVID-19. 

28.7% of the world’s manufacturing output takes place in China. The north-eastern coastal city of Shanghai is its biggest hub, with over 2,000 container ships leaving the port each month delivering cars, electronics and clothes to the world.

Here’s our Top 10 manufacturing hubs based in Shanghai.


10. Fosun Group

Founded: 1992, Shanghai

Product: Technology, real estate, steel and healthcare

On the 2021 Forbes Global 2000 List, Fosun International ranks at no. 459. For three years, it has sat at the peak of China’s Top 500 Private Enterprises.

Fosun leads the customer-to-maker (C2M) ecosystem, building good quality products and services for customers across the world.

9. General Motors

Founded: 1908, USA, entering China in 1997

Product: Vehicles 

The Chinese government was instrumental in the partnership between the Shanghai Automotive Industry Corporation (SAIC), China’s largest passenger automobile manufacturer, and General Motors. 

As SAIC-GM, the manufacturing facility in Shanghai is worth US$1.5bn. It is considered the biggest automobile complex in China.

8. Apple

Founded: 1976, USA, moving to China in 1988

Product: Electronics 

Want to take a selfie? 

Apple’s Qualcomm factory manufactures the cameras used in the iPhone and iPad, including the camera algorithm, chassis, lens and the focus sensor.

Qualcomm is also pioneering the way 5G technology is used across computing and IoT.

7. Tesla

Founded: 2003, Texas, moving to China in 2018

Product: Vehicles and Tiny Houses

Growing demand for Tesla’s EVs in China (and competition with Volkswagen) means that Tesla is reportedly preparing to build a second factory in Shanghai, to double its EV production. If successful, the electric vehicle manufacturer could be making up to 2mn cars each year.


6. Yotex Apparel

Founded: 2015, Shanghai

Product: Clothing 

Endorsed by East China University of Science and Technology, Yotex Apparel Co., Ltd. was founded by a group of Fashion Design Engineers.

Self-described ‘quality enthusiasts’, Yotex Apparel manufacture active sportswear and protective clothes.

In 2020, the business boomed due to an increase in demand for activewear, which has not slowed down.

5. Bright Food

Founded: 2006, Shanghai

Product: Food

As the second biggest food company in China, Bright Food utilises modern agriculture, food manufacturing and distribution to create products loved all over the world, including Maling canned foods and Bright ice cream.

Bright Food also has six listed companies, including Bright Dairy, Jingfeng Wine and Bright Real estate.

4. Shanghai Pharmaceuticals Holding 

Founded: 1994, Shanghai

Product: Pharmaceuticals 

The vertically-integrated and diversified pharmaceutical group, Shanghai Pharmaceuticals Holding Co. Ltd. (“SPH”), provides leading healthcare services in Research and Development, Manufacturing, Distribution and Retail.

As a leader in both manufacturing and distribution in China, SPH’s 2019 revenues reached US$26.5bn, making SPH one of China’s major healthcare forces.

3. ABB

Founded: 1999, Shanghai

Product: Technology 

ABB Engineering (Shanghai) Ltd. is ranked among China’s top 100 electric enterprises and the company claims its success is due to its 105,000 employees, who are spread out over 100 countries. 

The leading technology company is pushing for a more sustainable future for all stakeholders, through balancing economic success and environmental stewardship.

2. Volkswagen 

Founded: 1937, Germany, arriving in Shanghai in 1985

Product: Vehicles 

Despite competition with Tesla, Volkswagen continues to diversify its portfolio.

“This emphasises the brand’s target of at least 50% of cars in North America and China being electric by 2030,” said Ralf Brandstätter, CEO Volkswagen.

“We will continue to improve our existing models and their variants to meet the needs of our Chinese customers,” said Stephan Wöllenstein, CEO of Volkswagen Brand China, on the growing EV market.

1. Baosteel Group 

Founded: 1978, Shanghai

Product: Iron and steel

In the construction industry, iron and steel are core ingredients. Over 2020, the value of construction output made up 25.9% of China's GDP and part of that is due to Baosteel.

As the first manufacturer capable of supplying the first, second and third generation of advanced high-strength steel, Baosteel is exported across the world, where it is used in a variety of sectors, including automobile, transportation and nuclear power.



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