Aussie entrepreneurs find key to Asia is personal, not political

The Social Shopper

If your business currently has interests in Asia, or if you are planning to expand into this region, here’s an interesting article from Greg Earl via BRW, looking at the most important factors to consider, and where to obtain advice to help iron out any cultural difficulties.

“Australian businesses trying to break into Asia say finding the right local partner is the biggest challenge they face. But they also want government assistance to pave the way to the region.

A groundbreaking market research study of large and small businesses with Asian interests has identified China as by far the most popular offshore market, followed by Singapore, Hong Kong, Indonesia and Malaysia.

The study, to be released on Tuesday, says industry associations, ­followed by Austrade, professional services firms and chambers of ­commerce are the most common sources of information for businesses moving into the region.”

Continue reading the full article here:

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Lazy Westerners

Passport Footnotes

** Disclaimer **  I will be generalizing “Asians” as the business owners scattered throughout Asia.  Deal with it.

So I recently had the pleasure and privilege of traveling through Thailand and Cambodia.  I take a trip every year or so and I always take the DIY route. I pack a hefty backpack, a passport, a Lonely Planet guide book, some ideas and of course some money.  I roam the countries looking for attractions and things to do.. taking busses and trains to get places, staying in cheap hotels and eating the local food. Thailand was probably my best trip yet.. right up there with China back in 2001.

I learned so much on this trip.. it was an incredible eye opener.. I was already a lover of foreign cultures, especially the Asians, but now even more so. I feel the need to protect them.. to stick up for them.. to…

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Why are there no napkins in Asia?! (and other observations)

She's Doing What?!

I post this while sitting in a dark hotel room (blackout this morning) on a rainy day in Battar Bazar, Nuwakot, Nepal.  It’s where we’re staying during our build with the Fuller Center this week.  Internet is shoddy to say the least-seeing how we currently don’t have power.  I’m using a hot spot created by a friend from his cell phone with a sim card. We’re currently waiting out the rain before we determine what to do with our day.   So, here’s a post I drafted about a week ago on some observations from the first half of my trip.  More Nepal stories to come…eventually.

Halfway through this journey, it seems appropriate to reflect on and report some observations.

It’s hard to get a feel for local life and culture without seeing the inside of residents’ homes.  I really want to see the kitchen table, the bathroom, and how…

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Can Hong Kong build a ‘Silicon Harbour’? Nah, probably not

phil muncaster

hong kong skylineI might be back in London now but I’m still keeping one eye on the East. My latest for IDG Connect is a piece on whether Hong Kong can really lay claim to the title “Silicon Harbour”, given its dubious track record of under-investment and the increasing strength of rival Asian cities including Tokyo, Shenzhen, Shanghai and Singapore.

Well, as always, the jury’s still out. There are a lot of good things going on in Hong Kong, as this upbeat infographic shows. It’s politically stable, safe from most natural disaster and you can use the internet freely (unlike in mainland China). It’s also well connected internet-wise and relatively cheap, as Frost & Sullivan analyst Danni Xu told me: “enterprises in Hong Kong using 100 Mbps Ethernet Point-to-Point (P2P) per month are paying only one third the price of a similar set up in Singapore”.

“However, despite these advantages/benefits, Singapore remains…

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How Small U.S. Businesses Can Court Customers in China – Businessweek

CHINDIA ALERT: You'll be living in their world, very soon

Question: What are Chinese consumers looking for in an online shopping experience? What would you describe as the main reason websites aimed at Chinese consumers fail?

How Small U.S. Businesses Can Court Customers in China

Answer: News about Chinese tech companies making their way to Wall Street has been raising awareness about the vast potential Chinese market for U.S. small businesses. China is definitely interested in American-made goods. Here are some steps you can take to make sure your website is appealing to these new customers.

First, as I discussed recently, you need a website in Chinese. Make sure the site is created by a native Mandarin speaker who can convey the culture of your brand without a clunky verbatim translation that will fall flat, says James Chan, president of Asia Marketing & Management.

The main obstacle to selling online in China is the pervasive fear of being cheated or of buying a pirated product. “You need to find…

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Asia banks turn to ‘diplomats’ as regulatory burden bites

Financial Crime Asia

SINGAPORE (Reuters) – Banks have a new buzzword to describe their strategy in Asia: diplomacy.FCA - Singapore

Stung by regulatory probes into allegations ranging from the hiring of the offspring of senior state officials in China to rate manipulation in Singapore, and grappling with reams of new rules brought in after the global financial crisis, firms are going on a charm offensive with the region’s regulators and governments.

Executives brought in to head banks’ businesses in major Asian financial centers are now expected – by management and regulators themselves – to devote more time to building their relationships with financial watchdogs.

“Regulators have become major stakeholders – as important as big corporate clients – so firms are recognizing how key they are for business,” said Judy Vas, regulatory leader for Ernst & Young’s financial services business in Asia.

Barclays recently promoted its Asia head of tax, Li Li Kuan, to become country…

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