FB Observation

Keeping it in the family at CEIBS

An explosion in demand for cases about the challenges and opportunities that face family businesses in China has led to the creation of a dedicated research centre at CEIBS (China Europe International Business School). The CEIBS Centre for Family Heritage was set up as a knowledge centre committed to helping China’s family businesses sustain and go global as well as enabling foreign enterprises to better understand China’s family firms.

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Red-Star Macalline: Turning RMB600 into RMB60 billion, Going from Poverty to Wea...

Che Jianxin borrowed RMB 600 in 1986 to start his own company. Over the course of 30 years, that company, Red-Star Macalline, has evolved into China’s largest home furnishing chain. It is a household name among Chinese people and founder Che Jianxin is hailed as the king of home furnishings in China. Mr. Che, who is about to turn 50, has begun thinking about business succession, though it is not yet a pressing issue. 

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Husband-wife Business Partnership---The Couple’s Empire

When married couples become partners in business, their personal relationship can benefit their business. For some, however, it may threaten their marriage, and could even threaten the business if the marriage is dissolved. Chinese couples who have successfully co-founded businesses include LI Guoqing and Peggy YU, PAN Shiyi and ZHANG Xin, and YANG Lan and Bruno WU. Some, however, such as CAI Dabiao and his ex-wife, who were shareholders of Z-Kung Fu Restaurant, ended up divorcing and even becoming bitter enemies. When the marriage ends, personal issues may cause a severe loss to the business.

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Li Ka-shing's Magic Trick: Unlocking Billions From Undervalued Assets

Early this year another renowned Chinese impresario performed some dazzling magic, of the financial kind. Hong Kong tycoon Li Ka-shing announced a major reorganization of the two pillars of his family business empire, Cheung Kong (Holdings) Ltd. and Hutchison Whampoa Ltd. In reorganizing his companies Li is also shifting from entrepreneur to capitalist,and investors should welcome more of these acts.

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Making of a 200-Year-Old Family Business

In the ever-changing business world, people take it for granted that companies need to become more competitive, stay open-minded to changes and innovations, grasp the opportunities brought by globalization, gain access to capital in face of crisis, and be in a better position to meet challenges. In this context, we have seen a stream of M&As and reorganizations, as companies no longer choose to hold controlling interests for a long time. The change has shortened the corporate lifecycle. It is just one side of the business world. As for the other side, we have noticed the so-called family businesses can survive and thrive for centuries and that the company ownership and even management have been passed on from generation to generation.

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