Author Joel Backaler of China Goes West: Everything You Need to Know About Chinese Companies Going Global just returned from a book tour in China. On his website he summarizes a few observations, for example the fears of Chinese companies going global.
My last speech in Beijing was at the Cheung Kong eMBA program which highlighted the Chinese side of outbound investment. The vast majority of the 80 attendees were C-level executives from top Chinese firms pursuing their MBA primarily to learn how to globalize their businesses. After a keynote speech to open up the session, I was joined on stage by a senior vice president from the Chinese firm TCL, a consumer electronics firm. We discussed the topic of outbound M&A and the many challenges that Chinese companies tend to face in the process. My counterpart from TCL described many of the challenges I wrote about in my book based on his own experience buying firms in the US and France. He expressed concerns about over-paying for acquisition targets, challenges along the management visit stage and difficulties incorporating global executives into his Chinese organization.
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