On the second day of the retreat, we engaged in fascinating conversations at BYD Company to learn about the staggering growth of Shenzhen, which made it the leading technology city in the world. This was followed by another brilliant talk hosted by 2007 EOY Winner Liam Casey. Liam showcased to us the very best that China has to offer, and it’s a lot!
Later that afternoon I met with our Malaysian supplier for our modular business mac Skystone. Their team had flown in to meet me, being a traditional asian business the meeting was conducted in Chinese & English, the patriarch of the family attended and they were very interested in why I was in Hong Kong given we have just signed a 2 year production agreement with them ! I assured them I was only window shopping !
Day 3 was spent at Hong Kong University where we listened to the world’s leading lecturers in their fields. Topics such as Asian Economics, the newly developed US Trade Dispute, and the many opportunities between China and Ireland. It was an inspiring day of executive education and I thoroughly enjoyed the entertaining and informative presentation from Professor Zhigang TAO. I think the take away from the presentations was very clear, the local Asian market has scant regard for IP/patents and the professor confirmed they operate a CASE (Copy and Steal Everything) mindset, basically if you have use a local supplier your product would be copied, they would improve it, make it cheaper but expect to see it on the market branded under another name within 6 weeks ! A few of our product CEO’s were considerably shocked !
Read the first instalment of the EOY Series here.