High Tech, IT Technology and Startup Internships in Shanghai


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Industry Overview

Like most industries in China, the high-tech industry has witnessed a considerable growth in recent years. Despite China’s strong manufacturing power, its high-tech industry has lacked substantial technological innovations. The low number of high-skilled engineers and specialists, little respect for intellectual property and poor technological infrastructure weakened the industry’s growth. This gives U.S. high-tech firms an innovative advantage to enter the Chinese market. However, foreign companies should expect to see more fierce competition in the coming future. Chinese high-tech firms have been improving on innovation. IT has been one of the most popular majors in college in recent years. The Chinese government has initiated motions to set up high-tech industrial parks and offered benefits for tech start-ups and websites to jump-start their businesses. An internship in Shanghai offers any aspiring young talent a window to witness the remarkable development in one of the most fascinating counties in the world.

While most of China's startups are based in Beijing, Shanghai boasts its own fast-growing startup and tech community. Having spent much of our careers in startups in China ourselves, SmartIntern recommends those who are comfortable thinking big and working in a fast-paced environment join a startup. We believe that most should work for a startup at least once in their lives- why not do it in China?

Fast Facts

  • IT  industry revenue has been growing annually at a rate of more than six percent for the past five years, with a seven percent increase between 2013 and 2014, hitting $100 billion USD.
  • Shanghai has a large collection of venture capital firms and co-working spaces, allowing creative, entrepreneurial minds to gain support in launching new websites and business ideas
  • Shanghai is a perfect location to have a high-tech internship for its diverse pool of high-tech companies in the city’s high-tech industrial parks.
  • Shanghai is also home to a large number of prestigious universities and research institutions that are alma mater of many high-tech workers.


Current High Tech, IT and Startup Openings

Please keep in mind that the below openings represent only a portion of our total current openings! Please apply below or contact us for more details

Current Openings (Jan 2020):

Position: Front-End Web Design Intern

Intern at the Shanghai office of a leading-edge web design and development firm. Work hard play hard atmosphere with sweet office perks (coffee, foosball, even hammocks!) while building up your design and coding chops.

Who We Are Looking For: A graphic design student with experience in the Adobe Creative Suite (Dreamweaver and Photoshop specifically) and an eye for UX Design who is looking to join a high-growth tech company with offices in Shanghai.

What You’ll Learn:

  • UXD best practices
  • Wireframing and Prototyping
  • Implementation of designs onto a variety of different content management systems
  • HTML, CSS, and Javascript wizardry


Learn More About High Tech, IT and Startup Internships in Shanghai (Including Apex Minecraft Hosting)


The capital city up north may have the "Silicon Valley of China" thing going for it, but nothing beats pure commercial investment and the massive influx of foreign & Chinese innovation that happens in Shanghai. China's startup ecosystem is a tough place, but where the firewall tends to keep major foreign tech companies out, locally-based startups can flourish. Why? One reason is because there are 600 million internet users in China, with nearly 500 million mobile net users. Combine that with international markets, and the numbers are mind-boggling.

Shanghai is an interesting place to be if your goal is an IT technology internship or startup internship in China. Why does SmartIntern encourage startup internships in Shanghai? For one, you'll be part of a smaller team. Not only will you know everyone by name, but you'll be given a lot more responsibility. You'll work in the same room as the CEO, the company will have a flat management structure, and you'll have access to information and colleagues that you simply don't in a larger company.

Of course, being part of a smaller team will also mean a much wider diversity in roles. If you are the type who "likes to wear a lot of hats", are more of a generalist than a specialist, and have dreams of one day boostrapping your own startup, raising money, or pitching VCs for funding, then there are startups in Shanghai who NEED YOU. Whether you are scaling Minecraft servers for a company like Apex or working on wireframes, there is opportunity here. At Apex, you'll work to run a technology stack that allows Minecraft players to set up their own servers in five minutes or less. They have servers located worldwide and maintain lightning fast servers to reduce lag-time for players. They also offer DDOS protection for their customers.

Specialists need not be discouraged- you will do just fine in a startup. Specialists can thrive in companies large and thrive, while generalists tend to excel mostly in smaller companies.

Not sure if you are a specialist, a generalist, or something else altogether? No problem! If you are smart, hardworking, and ambitious then you will do just fine working with one of our partner companies.

Enter your internship at a Shanghai startup with an open mind and a willingness to get your elbows dirty and you will thrive. Love marketing? Great! It will help if you are also ready for business development (biz dev), maybe some basic web development (basic HTML is a great skill to have), and to learn the day's common internet marketing acroynms- whether SEO (Search Engine Optimization) or PPC (Pay Per Click) or SMM (Social Media Marketing)- as needed.

Being part of a startup team will give you firsthand experience with great entrepreneurial minds, whether they're a foreign-run company placing technology at the forefront, or a Chinese team who wants to be the next BaiDu or WeiXin (WeChat). Being part of a tight-knit startup community in Shanghai will also provide you with an ever-expanding network.

While most startups are tech-oriented, we have partner companies outside of tech as well. Startups have many roles available and we'll work hard to pair you with the best one for you and your career!

If you want a great overview of the startup scene in China, check out this writeup from our personal hero Steve Blank.