Wilson Chow, Global Technology, Media and Telecommunications Industry Leader and China Artificial Intelligence Leader, PwC China

Wilson Chow heads PwC’s global technology, media and telecommunications (TMT) industry practice. He is also the TMT industry leader and Artificial Intelligence leader for the firm’s Mainland China and Hong Kong practice. Wilson is based in PwC China’s Shenzhen office. He has been leading and supporting the PwC global network across all lines of service – Assurance, Taxation and Advisory – to provide one-stop professional solutions and services to companies in the TMT industry, as well as to clients looking for reinventing themselves through digital transformations.

Wilson has been working in the public accounting practice in Mainland China and Hong Kong for more than 30 years. He has extensive experience in providing assurance and advisory services to companies in the TMT industry, ranging from start-ups to global tech giants, for capital market transactions, assurance engagements, systems and controls advisory, and deals. He is a practising member of the Hong Kong Institute of Certified Accountants, China Institute of Certified Public Accountants, and the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants. Wilson is also an adviser to the Internet Advertising Board of Hong Kong.

Recently, in an exclusive interview with Digital First Magazine, Wilson shared his professional trajectory, insights on the future of TMT industry, the most fulfilling part of his career, pearls of wisdom, and much more. The following excerpts are taken from the interview.

Hi Wilson. Please tell us about your journey in the technology consulting industry.

I began focusing my efforts on assisting tech companies during the first global internet boom in the 2000s. I provided my assistance to Western internet and tech companies seeking to expand into the Asia Pacific and China markets. Conversely, I also helped tech companies in Mainland China and Hong Kong to nurture their businesses and operations. In 2015, I was appointed as the TMT Industry Leader of PwC China, and in 2017, I assumed the role of Global TMT Industry Leader at PwC. I lead a community of solvers within our global network to provide both Trust and Sustained Outcome services to tech companies seeking financial and operational transformation and advancements.

What do you love the most about your current role?

As the Global industry leader, I spend a significant amount of time working with our experts around the globe to serve tech hyperscalers. I provide services to them and collaborate with them to co-sell their products and services. I need to stay abreast of all tech developments and focus on the business implications of emerging technologies. I love to learn new things every day through my own efforts as well as from my colleagues and clients.

What are your predictions on the future of TMT and the rapid pace of innovation in your domain?

Without a doubt, the rapid advancements in AI, especially Generative AI, are going to reshape and reinvent most business operations and business models. The ongoing development of AI also rides on a large tech ecosystem, including the Large Language Models, GPU computing power/chips, cloud storage, and related APIs. There are different players and stakeholders in such an ecosystem, and we see numerous opportunities for our Firm to provide services to facilitate their needs.

As a leader, what approaches do you use to create a culture of experimentation and innovation within your team?

Our Firm has a well-established inclusive culture, and we embrace and allow failures, provided that our people learn from their mistakes and continuously improve themselves. For example, in view of the rapid development of Generative AI, we have set up a global taskforce with a generous investment commitment to explore various internal and external applications of the technologies to enhance and transform our service delivery models and processes. We also partner with tech hyperscalers to design various go-to-market service solutions and products to assist governments and companies in embracing these technologies.

What has been the most fulfilling part of your career?

The most fulfilling parts of my career come from several areas: the friendships and mutual trust I have built with my colleagues around the world; the appreciation from clients for our assistance in helping their transformation; and the continuous learning and knowledge I gain from the rapidly changing technology landscape.

If you could have a one-hour meeting with someone famous who is alive, who would it be and why?

I might choose the usual suspect, Mr. Elon Musk. Musk is an innovative and dedicated entrepreneur with great ambition and vision. He adopts an unconventional approach in dealing with things and people. I would like to learn from him what drives him to continuously advance and challenge himself, and what his vision is for the future world.

In your words, tell us the leadership skills that everyone should learn.

In my view, every leader is unique, and there would not be universal commonalities. However, I find that there are certain success factors possessed by many brilliant leaders: being open-minded, decisive, never be complacent, inclusive, and allowing people to make mistakes and learning from mistakes.

What is that one thing which motivates you to become better and better every day?

I have two children, and I would like to set a good role model for them by continuously improving myself. I hope they will learn from my examples.

What is a piece of career advice you have been given that you would pass on to others?

I would like to pass on a piece of advice to young people: they should live their dreams and not give up easily. The world is advancing so rapidly that they should also stay abreast of all new changes.

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