The city of Taichung in central Taiwan is a county-sized municipality that is home to nearly three million people. Its urban cluster hosts a major seaport and service economy, while its rural areas are agricultural and industrial. Aside from the seaport, the backbone of its industrial economy consists of 1,500 precision machinery makers and tens of thousands of SME suppliers.

Precision manufacturing offered growth potential in an advanced economy like that of Taiwan. The question was how to unleash it – and city government hit on a unique solution. By sharing the costs of software licensing, Taichung's government enabled manufacturers to bid and win jobs with major corporations that were previously out of reach. They also reduced their own purchasing costs while gaining a competitive edge on smaller vendors in other cities.

How did Taichung do it? Find out.

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