category / HNWI
Apr 29 2013
Last February, I discovered Harold Parisot’s Chinese Business club, where one can meet up with the European heads of the reputed Chinese companies such as ICBC bank, Huawei, Chinese credit card Union Pay and many others. You could see it as an offshoot to the Chinese Chamber of Commerce (would this organization exist in China, which is not the case).
The concept is based on a cocktail and business lunch at the Shangri-La Paris, once every quarter. The goal : hardcore networking. The stars: the top management of large up-and-coming Chinese corporations, Chinese and Hong Kong investment funds, French politicians (former minister Michele Alliot-Marie was there in December, finance minister Pierre Moscovici may come soon), and then French companies either in luxury or in heavy industry. The idea is to emphasise parity, with as many French as Chinese …
What’s in it for the luxury companies?
- On the one hand, these top bosses are themselves rich and regularly host delegations of Chinese businessmen coming from the homeland. They are known as “great influencers”.
- In addition, the quality of attendance and surroundings make this a “branded” event that some luxury companies already use to service their major Chinese VIPs visiting from China. It is always useful to introduce your Chinese VIPs to French politicians or renowned businessmen. The Chinese love this.
- For those not yet established in China, it is also a good place to meet with investment funds and discuss establishing a presence through joint ventures
- Others will benefit from discussing Chinese strategy with native Chinese companies who are also subject to tough profitability objectives …
- Finally, and most importantly, this is a great opportunity to make Guangxi, ie business relationships. The guanxis are give-and-take/win-win relationships between individuals which result from networking. Getting the right relationship at the right time, that’s the idea …
The Chinese Business Club was founded by real estate specialist Harold Parisot, who uses it as a service to his Chinese business customers. It is an astonishing economic model … which enabled Harold to introduce high level Chinese with high level French players.
If you think your company should be represented, please let us know, we can follow up and defend your case with Harold Parisot.
Nov 30 2012
Since the launch of visas for individuals (as opposed to groups) a year and a half ago, the pattern of Chinese tourist flows to France has changed considerably.
There are now approximately 5% of Chinese tourists travelling as individuals. This maybe be a small absolute number, but it is the « creme de la creme » of Chinese travellers. In a very short time, these individuals could be seen buying dozens of Patek Philippe or Breguet watches, pairs upon pairs of Roger Vivier shoes, and so much more … These 5% are like the Arab sheiks and their petrodollars, spending lavishly and hunting out the new, limited series or products not available in China.
How can you attract them?
There are a few venues in Paris specializing in premium luxury and caring for this type of VIP. But these require having exceptional products to offer. Another solution is to open a « weibo » – which may include an online appointment system – offering a direct channel to contact and prepare the tourist. This is an excellent way to gain visibility on the internet and to promote the Chinese appeal of one’s store. Indeed, in China there will be no Facebook, no YouTube, no Twitter (all of which are blocked by censorship), while Weibo offers the equivalent of Facebook and Twitter combined.
Aug 02 2012
During the Hainan Rendez Vous where Chinese elite and money meet, Zhenji interviewed 500 participants on their expectations vis-a-vis European luxury brands, when they travel to Europe. The study was carried out with clients of a VIP travel agency, who were looking for customised travel plans to Europe. 65 % of respondents were women, demonstrating their dominant role in travel planning within the Chinese couple. Half of the interviewees resort to using a concierge or VIP travel agent to organize their trip and help them with visas. Many also look to add some tourism to their business trips.
We asked them three questions:
What do you want to do during your trip ?
What brands do you want to look for ?
What are your expectations vis-a-vis these brands ?
The discussion was carried out in an open format around these three questions, with additional questions asked to qualify the answers.
- Shopping is always a key part of the trip and whoever comes to Europe, for work or for leasure, will make sure significant time is set aside for this. Shopping should not be at the large department stores – “that’s for the middle class, we are not concerned, we prefer the service and choice available in the boutiques”.
Jun 18 2012
Maximin Berko you are the founder and the owner of SFJAF : what does SFJAF mean ?
It means Shanghai Fine Jewelry and Art Fair, it is the only fine arts and fine jewellery fair in Asia since 1995.
Who are you Maximin Berko ?
I grew up in a family of Art dealers. One branch of the family was living in Antwerp and is also related to the diamond world. I helped my family at the different art fairs around the world since more than 15 years.
I first went to China to study Chinese and do research at the Shanghai Museum for my PhD at the Sorbonne in Paris.
Between my Masters degree and my PhD, I worked 1 year at Sotheby’s in New York.
What is the story behind SFJAF ?
We were exchanging ideas with people I met through the museum, they told me it would be a good idea my parents would come exhibit their paintings in Shanghai as slowly there was demand, that was 2006. I was thinking hard about where we would organize that exhibition and slowly grew the idea that maybe other people would be interested to try the upcoming Chinese market. I made some phone calls and the enthusiasm of people was the base of our decision to start the SFJAF.
May 02 2012
I went to Hainan Rendez Vous this year as a media partner and found it to be an amazing experience.
Networking there is so intense that I was often led to do business, even against my will, and in any case got to meet all the people who matter in luxury, whether clients or brands : all were present. Exhibitors that I had invited found what they were looking for, and much much more. A luxury metalworker sold miles of hand-made, wrought iron gates to real estate developers, a leather goods company met with a crowd of interior designers and architects. An upscale travel agent made over 500 contacts … These were four days of intensely mixing business, sunshine, conferences and new relationships.
The clients are just as well B-to-C for jets, yachts, and luxury cars, as B-to-B , since the Chinese never forget to do business if the opportunity arises, be they shopping, visiting a yacht or enjoying a meal. And Hainan also provides them with a formidable platform to meet the brands face-to-face and to accelerate discussions.
Hainan is also an avenue of flashy pink felt, on the seacoast, lined on one side with the largest and the most beautiful yachts to visit from Azimut, Beneteau, and on the other side with the Royal Visun Marina complexe, where the conferences take place and which is packed with luxury boutiques. Finally, small houses with smaller booths for smaller luxury players, either B-to-C such as wines and wineries, or B-to-B very focused on interior design and decoration.
Sanya airport, just a few miles away, handles the private jets.
The Hainan RV HNWI is dressed in Dunhill style sportswear with striped polo shirts in discrete/natural colors. Meanwhile, the women shine like jewels, carrying umbrellas and panama hats to protect themselves from the sun, along with black sunglasses and sunblock. They often wear long dresses with equally long sleeves to protect their milky skin color, or wear shorts underneath light clothing and lace veil which block sunrays. Hainan is a tropical island and the avenue is pink in the sunlight. One should protect oneself and avoid tanning. The women all display completely natural style make-up – which is actually very sophisticated. Everyone is very very very much in a hurry, not only to buy, but also to grow their business relationships with the French or European Art industries, not to mention attending as many exhibitor cocktail parties as possible… a heavy schedule …