Business opportunities of the post-corona era
Cash in on this unprecedented opportunity!
While the rest of the world is struggling with the corona virus, China has opened up again. Moreover, while most of the developed nations are discussing the recovery of their economies in terms of years, Chinese economy already started recovering before the end of the lock down. At the moment of updating this page (September 2020), the main obstacle for China’s economic growth is the slow recovery of exports due to the tardy opening up of the Western economies.
While China will continue to stimulate exports, the government is now aiming more attention to the development of the domestic market. It is called ‘dual circulation’, which takes the domestic market as the mainstay while letting domestic and foreign markets boost each other. After all, the strongest driver of economic growth in China already was the development of the vast rural regions. During my recent travels through remote areas in China, I have been able to observe how the increasing spendable income affects consumption. E.g., check out how I discovered Lotus coffee biscuits in a mountain city in North Sichuan, or a particular type of Mentos chewing gum in a country town supermarket in North Henan.
The time couldn’t be better for international suppliers of food and beverages to expand or start business in this market. Eurasia Consult can help you with factual information and the Chinese food industry and insight in the local culture and how that affects every aspect of your business. This blog provides only a small peep into the what we know and how we think. If you like what you see here, contact us for a tailor made advice.
Our regular services
Screening the data streams
We continuously screen information from a wide range of Chinese sources, including online social media. During our frequent visits to China, we collect first-hand information during formal and informal discussions with representatives of Chinese companies, government organisations, research institutes, etc. This blog reflects only a tiny bit of that information. We store that information for later use, but we can create a regular data stream for your company, daily, weekly, monthly, whatever suits your needs best. Moreover, we can add our analysis and recommendations.
Proprietary market studies
At Eurasia Consult, we have our own ideas about market studies. Advertisements for full-blown reports about the Chinese market for a certain ingredient or ingredient type appear regularly, but . . .
- They are laden with facts and figures, and . . . not much more. Such reports usually have hefty price tags.
- How reliable are such reports that do not include a single hiatus or estimate?
- Then there are the aspects that are usually missing in such quantitative reports, like: how do various players in the market think about a product? E.g., when talking about antioxidants, what products do Chinese users like for what applications and why?
To fill that gap, Eurasia Consult can supply an alternative type of market report. We firmly believe that market research should have an eye for the historical and cultural background; the people are at least as important as the facts & figures. Our eye for culture is reflected in this blog. As we have been involved in the Chinese food and beverage market since 1985, we are virtually part of its history.
Let us be your eyes and ears
As we are screening those information streams anyway, why not let us be your eyes and ears by compiling monthly (or at other intervals) reports on what is happening in China for products or product groups specified by you? There is no fixed scheme or protocol for a service like this. We can work completely according to your specification. Needless to add that our reports will include information that we pick during our frequent visits to China.
This is another area in which we can put our insight in culture to use. Promotion campaigns designed for Western markets cannot be expected to work similarly in China. Eurasia Consult can redesign an entire promotion campaign, making it more suitable to the expectations of the Chinese prospects.
Improve your online reputation
We can help or even manage activities around your products in the Chinese online media.
Even when your product is successfully launched in China, it is not likely that you can achieve a reasonable volume only by selling directly to end users. You will need to work with an agent or distributor. Eurasia Consult can help in pre-selecting a small number of potential agents by means, assist in negotiating a sound agency/distribution contract and make your selected connections into real partners.
Promotion in cyberspace
Another result of our constantly screening the Chinese Internet is that we are well aware of how foods and beverages should be marketed on that medium. Eurasia Consult’s Peter Peverelli has published an essay comparing the way European Early Grey tea and Chinese Pu’er Tea are discussion on the Chinese social network Weibo. Eurasia Consult can help you promote your products on the Chinese Internet in various ways.
We speak the language
Eurasia Consult speaks the language of the Chinese food industry. We do not only master the Chinese language, but are also sensitised in how a certain food, drink, or ingredient can best be promoted. A new product launch can be successful or fail by the use of one single (im)proper word.
When you intend to produce locally, is cooperating with a local partner the best option, or rather a wholly owned venture? If the latter is preferred, is it possible to buy an existing Chinese company or set up an entirely new plant? The answer to each question comes with tons of legal, political and cultural consequences. We can think along with you to craft the best strategy. Our advice is never based solely on ‘x years of experience’, but also driven by a unique methodology. That methodology is not a secret: it has been published in a very accessible book.
If cooperation with a local partner is selected as the best way to set up shop in China, the next problem is selecting a partner. Eurasia Consult can help extracting a short list of potential partners, including in-depth analyses of those companies. If you, e.g. would be interested in working with China’s top date processor, Haoxiangni (see my post on dates), we can provide a list of that company’s board members, the other companies of which Haoxiangni’s CEO Shi Jubin is a board member, and much more relevant information. We can assist in negotiating a contract that is beneficial to all parties. After signing the contract, we can help forging real strong partnerships.
So you have set up shop in China, with or without a local partner. However, things are not proceeding as expected. You could turn to us to help you with interim management of your China business. A few weeks of participative observation should suffice to put our finger on the problems and propose solutions.
We can help you implement the solutions in various ways, ranging from a continuation of the interim management arrangement or more hands-off monitoring, helping your people to put the business on track.
The core of all our services is: localisation. Your products and services need to appeal to Chinese prospects. Your local company can only grow roots in Chinese soil, if it becomes a Chinese enterprise. This does not mean that you to give up your national or corporate culture. Eurasia Consult is the only consulting firm in the field of China business specialised in creating a hybrid culture for your Chinese operation.
Contact us with your problems and questions directly, or using the following form.