June 17th, 2009 by China Business Success Stories
By Patrick O. Courtois
The Beijing Olympics have had a great impact on the city of Beijing, where a large infrastructure refurbishment initiative, fresh developments and a massive English language training campaign have been some of the elements of a drastic change and an amazing source of business opportunities for both local and foreign companies. Shanghai, with its upcoming Universal Exposition in 2010 is going through the same face-list, with the replenishment of the famous bund area, the accelerated infrastructure changes much needed to ease the megalopolis congestion problem and much more. Commercial opportunities are as well rising fast toward the May opening of the Exposition; opportunities that are being seized by both for local and foreign companies.
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February 3rd, 2009 by China Business Success Stories
By Andrew Hupert
A common refrain among young entrepreneurs in Shanghai is: “If we can just get through this, we’ll come back even stronger”. I have one simple question: Why?
Sure, there are specific situations were a recession has enabled one company to leapfrog a competitor or lead an industry consolidation. Sometimes clever business leaders accidentally discover new products or methods, and sometimes market fundamentals shift to give the advantage to an existing business model. But these tend to be exceptions to recessionary economics – not rules. If you are just slogging along, hiding in the bunker and waiting for the fog to lift – you may emerge to find that your business is weakened, your model outdated and your shop is staffed badly. Furthermore, there’s a great chance that your best remaining people will leave and take better positions at other firms once the firing freeze thaws. Read the rest of “Surviving the initial downturn is not enough – Part 1″ or post a comment
January 8th, 2009 by China Business Success Stories
If there is one thing which most western companies coming into China miss out on is the idea of “trial spots”, or as they are called in Chinese 试点。
So what is it? Basically, it’s a city, place, province or region which is used to try out something experimental which has not been tried before. When China first opened up, Shenzhen was a trial spot for opening up the economy to foreign manufacturing investment.
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January 7th, 2009 by China Business Success Stories
By Hank Sheller
While organizing some old files recently, I came across notes I took in August 2007 during a visit with 韩工, an old mentor of mine, in Shanghai. 韩工 taught me much of what I know about sourcing suppliers in China. The topic of our discussion was how manufacturing costs in the Shanghai area (aka the East China Region or Yangtze River Delta) have come down to the point that they are now close to or the same as costs in Guangdong, Fujian and southern Zhejiang province. 韩工 offered the following explanations for this phenomenon:
1. Smuggling of raw materials has been curbed and brought under control in southern China.
2. Tax regulations are being more strictly enforced in southern China. For example, it used to be common for suppliers not to issue 增值税发票, but this practice has been stopped. Read the rest of “Does Guangzhou still have the upper hand over Shanghai in manufacturing cost-competitiveness?” or post a comment
December 4th, 2008 by China Business Success Stories
One of the best VCs in the world is Gary Rieschel. He started Softbank and now is EMD at Qiming Venture Partners. When I visited him in China, he took me into a taxi where he showed me one of the businesses he was investing in. Cool conversation about China enterpreneurship too.
As to China, I’m still processing our trip. It was mind bending. Lots of photos are up on my Flickr feed. But…
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