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E-commerce in China: Gain entrance into a completely different world

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on Tuesday, 18 June 2013
in Business in China

Every minute 48,000 e-commerce transactions are made online in China

In a keynote speech at the 16th Credit Suisse Asian Investment Conference Jack Ma, founder of Alibaba, highlighted the differences between the ecommerce industry in China and in the USA. According to Mr Ma, “in the U.S., e-commerce is just online shopping. In China, e-commerce is a lifestyle.” This important distinction in the consumer perspective of e-commerce in both countries is critical to understanding the market. In the U.S. e-commerce is an additional market for companies, next to their offline main business. However, in China, where the infrastructure is not as developed as in the Western world, for some consumers e-commerce is the only way to fulfil their desires.

PTL Group CEO Zvi Shalgo was bij het Fenedex evenement “Verkopen en/of Produceren in China

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on Friday, 14 June 2013
in Next Step China

Dinsdag 29 mei jongstleden organiseerde onze partner Fenedex het symposium “Verkopen en/of Produceren in China” in het Hilton Royal Parc in Soestduinen. Het doel van deze seminar was om geïnteresseerde bedrijven een platform te bieden voor al hun vragen of zakendoen in China. Het volledige proces, van de voorbereiding tot en met de realisatie van operaties in China werd behandeld. Tijdens dit symposium konden deelnemers participeren in seminars, cases en discussies. Daarnaast vertelden de vele aanwezige ervaringsdeskundigen tijdens lezingen over hun “best practices” in het zaken doen in China.

Tussendoor was er ook nog ruimte voor persoonlijke interactie met de ervaringsdeskundigen uit China. Speed meetings gaven deelnemers de mogelijkheid voor persoonlijke interactie op een voor hen interessant gebied met de ervaringsdeskundigen.

Zvi Shalgo, CEO van PTL Group hield een lezing over praktische aspecten van succesvol zaken doen in cooperatie met Peter Rasmussen van Larive-Asia Base. Beide sprekers zijn zeer deskundig op het gebied van entree in China, door hun jarenlange ervaring op dit gebied. Onder andere de eerste export naar China en DO’s and DONT’s bij het opzetten van verkooppunten kwamen aan bod. De lezing werd gretig bezocht door de deelnemers van het evenement.

Mocht u nog vragen hebben over de lezing van Zvi Shalgo tijdens het Fenedex evenement of over PTL Group, dan kunt u contact opnemen met Hulya Kaya via This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

China’s 12th Five-Year Plan - Part 3

Posted by Tyler Kretzschmar
Tyler Kretzschmar
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on Monday, 13 May 2013
in Business in China

This is Part 3 of a 3-part series on the 12th Five-Year Plan.

Part 1 simplifies and summarises the plan, and Parts 2 & 3 will discuss the importance of the Plan for those interested in the Chinese market.

Click here for image source.

What does the Five-Year Plan mean for SMEs looking to enter the China market?

One thing that SMEs must be aware of is the rising cost of doing business in China. One of the implications of higher quality of life in China is increased wages, meaning increased production costs in the manufacturing sector. Some estimates show that the cost of labour has increased by 20 percent annually since 2008. And despite any delays in carbon tax, environmental awareness is sure to come at least partially at the expense of companies as well. These changes correspond to the shift toward high-tech manufacturing, as companies in low-end sectors will likely find it difficult to profit as they have in the past.

China’s 12th Five-Year Plan - Part 2

Posted by Tyler Kretzschmar
Tyler Kretzschmar
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on Tuesday, 07 May 2013
in Business in China

This is Part 2 of a 3-part series on the 12th Five-Year Plan.

Part 1 simplifies and summarises the plan, and Parts 2 & 3 will discuss the importance of the Plan for those interested in the Chinese market.

How has the 12th Five-Year Plan developed since its implementation?

The Five-Year Plan is not set in stone. As a drafted document to oversee social and economic development over the course of five years for the most populous country in the world, a certain level of coordination with local governments through supplementary and supporting legislation, as well as flexibility with the Plan are paramount to its success. As such, some aspects of the Plan drafted in 2011 are today, in 2013, slightly different after re-evaluation.

VIDEO: TELEPHONE TRANSLATION APP IN ISRAEL

Posted by Lily Li
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on Tuesday, 16 April 2013
in Business in China

An exciting look at how Lexiphone and its translation app are expanding in China with the help of PTL Group.

Cina, un mercato di opportunità e di rischi. Ma non cogliere l’opportunità è il rischio maggiore.

Posted by Tiziana Cantoni
Tiziana Cantoni
Ovvero io, che raccolgo, approfondisco ed elaboro quello che sento, leggo, sperimento e lo trasformo in post, ...
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on Monday, 18 March 2013
in senonCINAsci

È iniziato l’anno del serpente in Cina, ma il governo cinese prosegue sulla vecchia strada che ha come meta il portare la Cina ad essere un mercato di consumi. Facciamocene una ragione: saranno i nostri nuovi clienti. E quello che non vorremo vendere loro, impareranno a produrselo. Per poi probabilmente rivendercelo.

The Israeli robotics industry is aiming to the Chinese Market

Posted by Lily Li
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on Tuesday, 19 February 2013
in Business in China

On January 7, 2013, Mr. Zvi Shalgo the chairman of the Israeli Chamber of Commerce in Shanghai and the CEO of PTL Group was quoted during a special meeting organized by the Israeli Robotics Association as saying “Foxconn is not alone! The giant Chinese company is intending to replace its workforce by a million robots by the end of 2014. “This reflects a growing trend in China: large local companies are now investing in robotics and automation, because of the dramatic increase in wages."

He said: "Since the new regulation of labor laws in China, which led to a radical increase in salaries, many enterprises have collapsed. The Chinese industry sees robots as a solution to the diminishing workforce problem. Due to the policy of 'one child' in China, the working age population shrinks, which will naturally lose the demographic advantage. " 

Mr. Zvi Shalgo, who introduced the principles of management in China, which are very different from those found in any other market, said "Your initiative and technology is the only competitive power you have in China, so, do not share it with foreign partners." PTL Group of Companies has developed over the years under a model allowing Israeli companies to enjoy a risk reduction investment along with responsible growth in China, without giving their technology to a Chinese partner. On the other side, the partnership with the local government which is willing to spend on benefits and incentives (millions of dollars) to attract industries with unique technology does not require a technological partnership in return. This option therefore is recommended.

Another speaker was Dror Marom, CEO of ACS (Motion Control) who has been operating in China for two years. The company develops motion control systems for the electronics, semiconductor, medical scanners, and digital printing market. Until 2010, ACS had two distributors in China, but given its results, the company realized that only a local presence would achieve a successful outcome. The company now operates in China through PTL Group in order to save the investment required in establishing its own subsidiary in China. PTL Group provides a total management shell including recruitment, handling administrative matters and personnel, finance and office management, so that local workers recruited are only concerned with managing sales. Marom also mentioned, that competition in China is tough, so "as an Israeli, your advantage is the unique technology you have, which should be kept."

2012 Honorary Citizen of Changzhou

Posted by Lily Li
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on Saturday, 05 January 2013
in Business in China

On Dec 18, 2012, Mr. Zvi Shalgo, CEO of PTL Group, was bestowed the title of “Honorary Citizen of Changzhou” during an official ceremony involving a number of foreign companies, in the Changzhou Shangri-La Hotel. The Changzhou Honorary Citizen Award is the highest distinction in recognizing the extraordinary contribution made by expatriates to the city of Changzhou.

HR-Management in China – Makkelijker gezegd dan gedaan!

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on Friday, 19 October 2012
in Next Step China

Op 27 november 2012 aanstaande organiseert PTL Group samen met Adecco Group en Bonnard Lawson het seminar 'HR-Management in China'. Het seminar zal plaatsvinden in Postillion Hotel te Utrecht/Bunnik. Dit seminar is bedoeld voor HR-managers, DGA’s of managers die verantwoordelijk zijn voor China en voor bedrijven in de technologische sector die lokaal in China aanwezig (willen) zijn. Het is de perfecte aangelegenheid, waarbij drie ervaringsdeskundigen antwoord zullen geven over de aanpak van uitdagende HR-vraagstukken met betrekking tot HR-activiteiten en HR-management in China.

Tijdens het seminar komen veelgevraagde onderwerpen aan bod zoals:

  • hoe vind ik goed gekwalificeerde mensen in China?
  • hoe stuur ik mijn management in China op afstand aan?
  • hoe behoud ik mijn mensen en hoe vergroot ik hun motivatie en loyaliteit?
  • hoe ga ik om met salaris, sociale premies en secundaire arbeidsvoorwaarden?
  • kies ik voor expats en/of Chinees management?

Ervaringsdeskundigen zullen verder ingaan op de volgende aspecten:

  • Het managen van de Westerse/Chinese management interface door Zvi Shalgo, CEO PTL Group
  • Arbeidsrecht in China door Choy Yiu Chan, Nederlands advocaat en lokaal partner bij Bonnard Lawson International Law Firm in Shanghai
  • Salarissen en beloningssystemen in China door Alessandro Tiberia, Implementation and Sales Support Director van de Adecco Group

Meldt u zich nu per e-mail aan bij This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. . Mocht u specifieke aandachtspunten of vragen hebben die u tijdens dit seminar over HR in China graag besproken ziet worden, laat dit dan vóór 22 november aanstaande via bovenstaand e-mail adres aan ons weten.

Trust management, de makkelijke weg voor het starten van je business in China

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on Wednesday, 20 June 2012
in Next Step China

Het beginnen van een bedrijf in China is tegenwoordig geen makkelijke beslissing om te nemen. Voornamelijk voor de SME’s is dit lastig, dit voornamelijk door de crisis die momenteel gaande is in Europa. Hierdoor zijn bedrijven huiverig om een grote investering te doen waar ze geen zekerheid over hebben dat deze terug verdient kan worden.

Maar wat weerhoudt de ondernemer buiten de algemeen bekende angsten om zaken te doen in China? Voornamelijk de angst om te falen, het werken op onbekend werkterrein, de onzekerheid over de ‘effectiviteit’ en de time-to-market zijn onzekere factoren die ervoor zorgen dat men sceptisch is over het zaken doen in China.

Het opzetten van je bedrijf in China kan in verschillende stappen beschreven worden. Het eerste wat een ondernemer denkt te moeten doen is zijn bedrijf regsiteren in China. Dan wordt er besloten of het bedrijf een WOFE een JV of een Rep Off wordt.

Het registreren van een onderneming is slechts het begin, na het registeren van je onderneming komt de zoektocht naar een kantoor, het aannemen van personeel en het organiseren van de bedrijfsstructuur. Ook moet men beginnen met het zoeken naar een distribiteur, die de producten kan importeren of verkopen.

Het opzetten van je bedrijf in China kan in enkele maanden, echter kan men tegen bureaucratische rompslomp en andere niet ingecalculeerde problemen lopen, waardoor een registratieproces veel vertraging kan oplopen.. Dit is vaak het geval wanneer er geen volledige duidelijkheid is over hoe een bedrijf eruit moet komen te zien.

Operational Audits: Lessons for Internal Control in China

Posted by Zvi Shalgo
Zvi Shalgo
Zvi Shalgo is the CEO and owner of PTL Group. He is also a Chairman of the Israeli Chamber of Commerce in Shan...
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on Tuesday, 24 April 2012
in Business in China

In the past three decades, the technological gap between foreign and local goods provided enough of a competitive advantage to cover a serious lack of operational management and infrastructure in China-based foreign-invested enterprises, but this is no longer the case. 

China is undergoing an “operational revival” of sorts, and excellence in operational management and infrastructure has become a top priority. Today, as China’s market is the business focus for many established players and new entrants.

One of the primary drivers for operational audits in China is that language and cultural barriers prevent China-based GMs from reporting accurate and comprehensive information about on-the-ground operations to a company’s headquarters. In fact, much of the information reported is not based on multiple sources, but rather a translation of the opinions of one local manager or partner.

Furthermore, developing internal “self improvement cycles” requires an openness to constructive criticism and multidisciplinary intervention that is uncommon among traditional Chinese managers.

An operational audit can help to fill the informational void and bridge cultural barriers in China to establish checks and balances and strengthen internal control. Pure financial or legal audits to assess internal control systems are insufficient, as these audits rely on data willingly submitted by the audited company. An operational audit is a key to the accuracy of such data in the first place. 

Operational audits can uncover a variety of behaviors that can dramatically affect a company and will likely not be otherwise uncovered, including:

  • Employees who signed perfectly legal labor contracts but are not fulfilling their job description (or, even worse, labor contracts for employees who simply do not exist)
  • Production losses visible in the factory but not recorded in the books
  • Company resource usage recorded in the books that does not happen in real life

Additionally, improved interdepartmental communications and improved management confidence are all by-products of an effective operational audit.

In this article, we highlight five lessons (all gained from operational audits) for establishing effective internal controls:

  1. Ensure an Active and Accountable Knowledge Transfer
  2. Invest in Recruitment Screening
  3. Systematize Internal Processes
  4. Keep an Eye on Distribution Channels
  5. Prioritize Loss Prevention
Posted by Zvi Shalgo
Zvi Shalgo
Zvi Shalgo is the CEO and owner of PTL Group. He is also a Chairman of the Israeli Chamber of Commerce in Shan...
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on Monday, 23 April 2012
in Business in China

While China is on an accelerated path to become a consumer oriented market international companies face ever growing managerial challenges trying to keep up. Over two decades of attracting massive foreign investment and the creation of fast technology transfer mechanisms made China the world’s main manufacturing base. 2011 and the new 12th five year plan shifted the focus of the Chinese policy makers to the strengthening of China’s dynamic new homegrown companies both home and abroad. Domestic Private Enterprises (DPE) as they are called here contributed over 60% of the Chinese GDP in 2010. This is in striking contrast to 38% they contributed back in 2005. Adding to this the fact that the Chinese GDP is expected to quadruple itself (2007-2025) helps to draw a general perspective of the business threats and challenges facing Western companies in China as well as in home markets in the next few years.

The financial crisis since 2008 from one side, and the fast growing Chinese consumer market as well as the abundant wealth available for investment in China today, amplify even more the growing need to penetrate and operate in Chinese markets.

Turnaround & Transformation Triggers

China is well known for being a challenging management environment for foreign companies. There are many cultural and structural market reasons that create those unique difficulties. As the new year of the dragon begins it will be interesting to focus on two recent trends affecting manufacturing small and medium sized enterprises (SME). These are both good reasons for many European based companies to reconsider their approach towards opening a new operation in China; globalisation of supply chains and the increased threat of competition by Chinese DPE in China and within a few short years in Europe’s own backyard.

Seminar: New Models for Setting Up & Managing Operations in China

Posted by Elena Luk'yanenko
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on Tuesday, 14 February 2012
in Business in China

Three factors – the beginning of a new year; the globalization of industry and emerging trends in China - led the Manufacturers’ Association of Israel (MAI) to run a seminar themed New Models for Setting Up and Managing Operations in China.  Approximately 85 senior managers from various industries attended.  The event was held on the 16th floor of Tel Aviv’s world famous Industry House, which offers breathtaking views of the Mediterranean.

Israeli experts and business managers with a strong knowledge of China's commercial connotations, shared their experience of successfully managing industrial projects and business activities there.  Conference participants also had the opportunity to examine established Israeli companies in China and interact with Israeli business professionals who have a firm history of operating a business there.

The seminar was opened by Amir Hayek, CEO of MAI; and Jackie Eldan, Consul General of Israel in Shanghai. Both men focused on the tremendous growth and potential of the Chinese market.  They also emphasized the importance of engaging China as a trade partner.

Zvi Shalgo, CEO of PTL Group and Chairman of the Israeli Chamber of Commerce in Shanghai, gave an address titled “Strategies for Sustaining Competitive Advantage in the Chinese Market”, during which he analyzed multiple facets of industrial management in China.

Mr. Shalgo reviewed current trends in Chinese markets, most notably the rise of private companies.  In his talk, he also illustrated how the gap between Chinese and Western industry, locally and internationally, is narrowing.   He referred to different models of manufacturing solutions in China and explained one of this year’s hottest emerging trends for Chinese business: the industrial incubation model.

PTL Group wins ATTA Turnaround of 2011 Award

Posted by Elena Luk'yanenko
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on Sunday, 30 October 2011
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October 22, 2011 - Zvi Shalgo, CEO of PTL Group was presented with the ATTA Turnaround of 2011 award at the 2nd annual ATTA conference which was held in Hong Kong on October 21-22, 2011.

The annual conference included several panels discussing the expected business environment in Asia for turnaround and transformation in 2012. A lively Q&A followed with a sense that Asia could see accelerated business and financial distress in the next two years, which would lead to enhanced opportunities for ATTA memebers.

The highlight of the event was the first ATTA Awards ceremony with a key note speech by noted turnaround expert Jean Luc Perbos.

Jean Luc Perbos presents Zvi Shalgo, CEO, PTL Group with the first ATTA award for a mid size turnaround in China

Download ATTA Newsletter Issue 1 Volume 1

Zvi Shalgo speaks on setting up production in China at seminar for Dutch manufacturers

Posted by Hulya Kaya
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on Thursday, 27 October 2011
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OCTOBER 25, Zoetermeer, Netherlands – PTL Group held a seminar in co-operation with FME and EVD. The aim of this seminar was to inform Dutch companies about setting up production facilities in China. The event was attended by approximately 60 Dutch business owners and senior executives. Key note speakers consisted of  Jan Hak, president of GMV-FME, Maarten Roos, R&P China lawyers and Zvi Shalgo, CEO of PTL Group. Facilitator Harry Starren, CEO of De Baak, was in attendance as the moderator of the seminar.

To further support the seminar, a report was published on the specific topic of "Equipment Manufacturing and Machinery in China". The report focuses on the opportunities for equipment manufacturing in China and the importance of the Chinese market for the Dutch manufacturing and technological industries. The report provides tips and guidelines for setting up production in China, ranging from business structure and employment to the sensitive issues which companies must consider when operating in China.

After Harry Starren gave a brief introduction, Marije Hulshof, Director of NL EVD International, gave an update about the opportunities for Dutch SMEs in Chinese markets. PTL Group's CEO, Zvi Shalgo, discussed the history of doing business in China, emphasising that earlier foreign companies used only to source from China. These days, they don't just source or manufacture in China but also sell in the local market. Zvi Shalgo also presented current trends, such as critical timing issues and incubation support models, as well as opportunities to benefit from Chinese government funds. He suggested that Dutch SMEs should consider incubation as their first step when setting up in China, and discussed the stages of establishing a factory in China. He also presented incubation concepts and critical considerations for choosing one. Maarten Roos followed by talking about intellectual property and concerns of foreign companies.

Following the presentations, there was a panel discussion in which key note speakers, answered numerous questions from the audience. The subjects discussed ranged from HR to finance, and other issues related to setting up production facilities in China. Once the panel discussions finished, there was the opportunity for companies to engage in networking, which provided a platform for all attendees to share and discuss their ideas about business in China.

China’s Paradox of Talent: HR survival strategies

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on Thursday, 29 July 2010
in Business in China

The Chinese labour market is a paradox of talent. Despite a large workforce there is a shortage of skills. The resulting excess demand for talent has created a seller’s market. Skilled locals have more employments options and are more likely to leave current employers if they feel dissatisfied. These employees seek career advancement, new challenges and opportunities. Employee retention poses a challenge to firms, with high turnover rate of around 20.8% and 21.8% in 2009 according to Hewitt China.

Waste Management In China

Posted by Elena Luk'yanenko
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on Wednesday, 14 July 2010
in Business in China

One Man’s Trash:  China’s Growing Waste Problem

No nation has witnessed a growth in waste at the rate that China has seen in the past two decades. Industrialisation and an urban population explosion have propelled China to overtake the USA in waste generation in 2004. Urban areas alone generate 1.5 billion tons annually or 1kg per capita daily.

China’s Waste Management systems have failed to develop to manage the increasing amounts of waste. The domestic industry does not have the necessary infrastructures or expertise in efficient collection, treatment, disposal of waste nor designing and operating facilities.

Success requires Cultural Understanding and Hardwork: Ilan Maimon shares his China business experiences and insights

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on Wednesday, 14 July 2010
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PTL Group was highly fortunate to have an opportunity to talk with Ilan Maimon, CEO of Sigma Group, an experienced industrial entrepreneur and multiple business owner in China. He is also a partner in PTL Group Industrial Project Management initiative. Ilan describes himself as a businessman, who is a mechanical and electrical engineer by profession.

What brought you to China?

Ilan: I am originally from Israel, where I was a partner in a software company. With the Dot-Com crisis in 2002, I decided to quit my current position and make a major change in my life. So I came to China.  I worked as a General Manager for a few companies while starting my own in parallel.

What are the areas/current projects you are working on? Tell me more about your business and what you do?

The Art of Turning Around Distressed Entities in China

Posted by Elena Luk'yanenko
Elena Luk'yanenko
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on Friday, 07 August 2009
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PTL Group: What brings you nowadays to China?

Jan Molenkamp: Many international companies have ventured into China without taking into account the necessary preparation and analysis steps. Consequently they inevitably run into trouble some way or another. During the time that the domestic markets of these companies were on a “high”, underperformance or even loss making of their Chinese entities was accepted as a “part of the business development process.”

Now the domestic markets are less than favorable due to the global economic crisis. Due to this, more focus is put on the individual contribution of the various international ventures. After all, these were set up over the past couple of years to contribute to the enterprise’s overall bottom line. The attention to these contribution factors quickly (and in some cases finally) exposes to some unlucky international enterprises that the Chinese venture is underperforming at best.

Due to enormous pressures on profitability and cost saving a culture of decision making emerges in corporations, which previously was deemed unnecessary. Quickly the companies scramble their own analysts, reorganization- or liquidation experts, who are immediately sent to China to see what can be saved, improved or shut down.