How did you become interested in Asia?
After I graduated from college, I went into the Army and was stationed in Japan for two and a half years. My wife joined me and we traveled whenever we could get away. We particularly enjoyed trips to Hong Kong, Taiwan and Thailand. We developed a great appreciation for the people, their customs, food and the many different art forms unique to each region. From those early years of our marriage we began to collect Asian furniture and artwork.
In all of our travels, Hong Kong stands out the most. Just landing at the old airport provided thrills as you looked into buildings just off the wing tips landing from the West or landing from the East where a third of the runway jutted into the water. The view from The Peak was fantastic and remains one of the best vantage points to view Hong Kong. Even in the early seventies, Hong Kong attracted people from all over the world. It has recognized both Chinese and English as the official languages for decades. It makes it quite easy for us Westerners to get around and enjoy all that Hong Kong has to offer.
What led you to form China Business Consulting?
I had worked in the legal industry for over 30 years and was the Executive Director of Troutman Sanders for 21 of those years. During that time Troutman opened numerous offices domestically and in Hong Kong, Shanghai and London internationally. I was deeply involved in the due diligence and logistics for all. For the last 14 years I have been active in the local Asian community, as well as, organizations that promote doing business in China and Hong Kong.
CBC was organized to assist small enterprises that could benefit from doing business in China. CBC can help those organizations evaluate if a China strategy makes sense and, if so, how to go forward.
Why did you choose to focus on small businesses?
It is simply a matter of resource allocation for a small business. Most small businesses do not have someone on staff with time and knowledge to undertake such a project. Most external resources that have the knowledge to help do not cater to the small business market. Many of those external resources have overhead structure and fees that make them impractical for a small business. China Business Consulting was organized to meet the needs of those firms that need efficient, knowledgeable and cost effective assistance.
What is the value CBC brings to small businesses?
CBC has the knowledge, experience and relationships acquired over many years of involvement in the region that allows us to bring real value to small businesses. We have the ability to find and pre-qualify vendors, arrange peer to peer conversations, schedule site visits, provide translators if needed, and assist with the logistics to establish local operations. We can address a broad range of business issues and, if we can’t, we will certainly do our best to identify someone who can address that particular issue.