Both China and India represent business opportunities for small businesses and growing companies in the United States and Europe.
According to the web site Trade.gov, many U.S. companies that export have fewer than 100 employees and many more have five or fewer. Small businesses must overcome many challenges to do business in either China or the emerging market of India.
The U.S. government is promoting exports as a way to create up to 2 million more jobs domestically within the next five years through the National Export Initiative, signed by President Obama in March 2010.
International Business Resources
Start online with the Web site Trade.gov to find information related to international opportunities including India and China. On the upper right hand corner is a link that reads “Find Local Export Assistance.” Under the tab “Trade Topics” is another link to local assistance.
There is a link to the site for the U.S. Commercial Service, the trade promotion arm of the U.S. Department of Commerce’s International Trade Administration. The agency provides market intelligence, business matchmaking, trade counseling, and trade advocacy.
Long Term Plans
Companies that want to do business in India or China need a long-term plan in order to build trust and develop close relationships. Ed Fuller, president and managing director of Marriot International, spoke to a trade conference on India and said he “had 20 dinners and visited the homes of people we were doing business with, but it still wasn’t a close relationship.”
Those relationships take time to build and most American companies want results quickly. Fuller says do not expect to fly to India and start doing business immediately. Take time to learn the local culture.
Use Local Guides
In Southern California, Quanta Consulting helps companies develop a strategy for doing business in India. Clients range from freight forwarders and small aerospace parts manufacturers to companies offering telecommunication services and alternative energy technology.
Quanta is experienced in both U.S. and local Indian cultures to help businesses maneuver through local regulations in the emerging markets of India.
In Shanghai, China, D&E Trading Company, Ltd offers American and European companies a database of reliable manufacturers using its knowledge to make purchasing supplies efficient and cost-effective for its clients. They make it possible for client companies to make fewer trips to Asia and find the highest quality products for the best prices.
Company president Samantha She has previous experience as an operations manage for Kmart, JC Penny’s, and AMC. She also helped the European gardening tools company, Fiskars, set up an order management process in Asia.
“Our core business is handling the entire supply chain for U.S. and European companies,” she said. D&E Trading Company can work across industries but most of their customers are retail and consumer businesses.
“We provide total solutions related to sourcing evaluations and marketing developments,” she said.
D&E Trading Company’s fees range from $ 4,500 to $ 7,500 for its complete range of day-to-day operational services.
Why India and China
India is an emerging market as studies show that 71% of the population is younger than age 35 and up to 40% of the people will enter a middle class lifestyle in the next 15 to 20 years. India is the world’s 4th largest economy.
China is the world’s third largest economy and continues developing ties to the West economically and culturally.
Larry Flax, co-founder of California Pizza Kitchen (CPK), told an audience of the Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce in May 2010 that when CPK entered China they thought they would be the ones to introduce barbeque chicken pizza. He said barbeque chicken pizza was already popular.
While the two countries represent opportunities, having patience and using trusted local resources are necessary for business success in China and India.
Online resources used in this article:
Quanta Consulting www.quantaco.com
D&E Trading Company www.outsourcing5pl.com