Archive for October, 2006

Wal-Mart Goes Shopping (for Approval)

Wednesday, October 18th, 2006

Wal-Mart is reported by the FT (and MSNBC) to be the front-runner (with US$ 1 billion) in the bidding for a big mainland (Taiwanese-controlled) China retailer, Trust-Mart (and not just because the name fits…also because it has 100 stores, sales of US$1.4 billion, and as the deal would help the Mart leapfrog Carrefour to become […]

Don’t Quote Me (On Investing)

Wednesday, October 18th, 2006

Another little gem for our noted and quoted series… Vincent Choo, strategic alliance and new business development director of Yum! Restaurants China (of KFC fame), has had an interesting ride while investing in China. His neat analysis (as reported in the Star) is as follows: “The journey is definitely tough and jerky. You are bound […]

More Due Diligence (and a Guide)

Monday, October 16th, 2006

I posted recently that Due Diligence = Sound Sleep, but the stories of sleepless / hapless businesspeople still pour in. Of course, examples abound (see: Don’t be Cheated by the Cheats and Corporate (Non) Governance) but for two very recent examples (one bad and one good) may help to underline the issue: • In one […]

A (Socialist Market Economy) Commune, and Other Hotels

Monday, October 16th, 2006

Ten or fifteen years ago, there were not a lot of (attractive) options for the business traveler to China. The Great Wall Sheraton and the Jianguo Hotel in Beijing may conjure up fond memories for some, while the Hilton in Shanghai and the White Swan in Guangzhou are also famous survivors. Now, of course the […]

National UK-China Business Conference, October 26th 2006, London

Monday, October 16th, 2006

London will offer a rare opportunity to hear from a senior official of the National Development Reform Commission (NDRC), when its Vice Chairman, Peng Sen, speaks at the National UK-China Business Conference on October 26th (see details below). China Business Services is supporting the event, and I will be speaking in two of the workshops […]

Counting the Cost of China’s Golden Weeks

Monday, October 16th, 2006

Interesting news from the China Travel Industry Blog, which refers to a China Daily article about China’s infamous “golden week” holidays (Chinese New Year, Labour Day and National Day) – which often result in confusion and frustration as millions of people migrate across the country – leaving the world’s production un-produced, and begging emails un-opened. […]

Fast Train to China Manufacturing

Thursday, October 12th, 2006

Hornby is a famous British brand that makes high-quality, model trains and cars. The China-Britain Business Council’s China-Britain Business Review (September, 2006), contained an interesting case study, by Humphrey Keenlyside, on the company’s move to manufacture in China. According to the article, Hornby found itself facing hard times as competitors moved to China. Having employed […]

Corporate Governance and a Party (Committee) in the Boardroom

Wednesday, October 11th, 2006

One of the positive things China expects from the introduction of foreign investment (and the use of overseas listings) is improved corporate governance. However, this requires a big change in the way that Chinese companies operate, as they have often been driven by dictat – with the big boss (and the Party Committee) being all-powerful. […]

Shareholding Reform (Almost) Completed

Tuesday, October 10th, 2006

Reform of the Chinese stock market has been going on since 2005 , but news is just out (from China Daily) that the majority of listed companies (1,104, representing over 90 percent of total market capitalization) have now completed shareholding reforms to convert “non-tradable” state shares into tradable ones. “Beginning Monday, the stocks of these […]

No Cap for Environmental Costs

Tuesday, October 10th, 2006

Most of the costs previously reported in relation to the environment have been…environmental ones (see more here: “Where is All the Water?”). Now, however, new regulations may help shift the cost burden to the polluters. A Reuters report notes that daily fines may be imposed instead of the current system: “Normally, fines for pollution are […]