Tom Manning

Lecturer at the University of Chicago Law School, former CEO of companies in China, Asia, Europe and the United States.

Travels from Chicago

Tom Manning is a Fortune 500 board director, a corporate adviser on China- related issues, and an educator who previously served as the CEO of companies in Asia, Europe and the United States.

Based in Hong Kong for 17 years, he served as the CEO of Cerberus Asia, Indachin Limited, Capgemini Asia, and Ernst & Young Global Consulting Asia, and as a partner with Bain & Company. While with Capgemini, he managed the firm’s Global Strategy & Technology business from Paris.

Earlier in his career, he was with McKinsey & Company, CSC Index, and Buddy Systems in the United States.

He is currently on the adjunct faculty of The University of Chicago Law School, where he teaches courses on corporate governance in China, private equity in Asia, U.S.-China relations, and innovative solutions in business, law, and society. He also serves as an independent board director of three publicly-listed companies: Dun & Bradstreet, the leading global provider of corporate information (NYSE), where he is also Lead Director; CommScope, a leading telecommunications technology company (Nasdaq); and, Clear Media, China’s largest outdoor media management company (HKSE).

He is an advisory board member of The Demand Institute, an affiliate partner of the Waterstone Management Group, and Chairman of The Chicago Philharmonic Society.

In 2013, he founded The China Advisory Board, a group of China-experienced executives who provide strategic assistance to corporations whose future depends on China. During the past decade, Mr. Manning also served as an independent director on the boards of the Bank of Communications, the fifth-largest bank in China (HKSE, Shanghai Exchange); Gome Electrical Appliances, a leading consumer electronics retailer in China (HKSE); AsiaInfo- Linkage Holdings, China’s primary telecom software company (NASDAQ); and iSoftStone, one of China’s top IT companies (NYSE). He was also an adviser to the World Economic Forum on its Global Agenda for China, a founding director of the Chicago-China Development Corporation, and a director of six private companies across Hong Kong, India and China.

A native of Chicago and a graduate of Harvard College (A.B., East Asian Studies, 1977) and the Stanford Graduate School of Business (MBA, 1979), Mr. Manning is a frequent speaker, commentator, and op-ed contributor on topics such as China, governance, innovation, and private equity. His contributions have appeared in diverse forums, including Chief Executive, Global Finance, Industry Week, NPR, Financial Times, WSJ, IHT, Journal of Private Equity, and Pepperdine Law Review. He speaks Mandarin and divides his time between China and the United States.

Potential topics for discussion include:

  • Why every CEO and board needs a China strategy – regardless of whether the company is operating in China
  • Chinese economic developments, including GDP growth, key trends, upside, likely rough spots, and implications for American companies
  • US-China relations, including the current state of this relationship, key factors likely to shape the future relationship in the Trump era, prospects for a trade war, China’s leadership in international organizations, China’s relationship with North Korea, and need for a long-term strategic cooperation agreement
  • Chinese companies and prospects for key sectors and leading firms
  • Chinese innovation – the rising state of innovation in China, and the implication for American companies

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