Category Archives: books

What’s the deal with Alibaba’s new retail? – Tom Doctoroff

Supermarkets in China (and where not) have been unfriendly for innovation – to put it mildly. But Alibaba’s HEMA’s supermarkets, starting the so-called “new retail”, are causing a revolution, writes marketing guru Tom Doctoroff in AdAge. 25 Stores are functional and dozens more will be open soon.

In China, politics is crucial for business – Shaun Rein

China has become a politicized society, and countries and businesses can only ignore politics at their own peril. That is one of the key messages of political analyst Shaun Rein’s book The War for China’s Wallet: Profiting from the New World Order, and at the China Economic Review, he explains how that – in his view – works.

Location is key, also for economists – Shaun Rein

Chinese New Year is ahead and economists have their predictions about the country’s economy ready. Much of their gloomy prospects (Over-investment, too much debt, bubbly markets, faked data, Ponzi-like financial structures) depends on their location, observes business analyst Shaun Rein, author of The War for China’s Wallet: Profiting from the New World Order, according to Bloomberg. Those located in China tend to get the uptick in the economy better than those observing China from afar.

Mao killed more than Stalin or Hitler – Ian Johnson

Who killed more, Hitler or Stalin, is a question often asked. Journalist Ian Johnson, author of The Souls of China: The Return of Religion After Mao, argues – 60 years after the Great Leap Forward started – that Mao Zedong is often wrongly excluded from this debate. But he opts for a nuanced approach in The New York Review of Books, although in numbers Mao beats both Stalin and Hitler.

Lifting branding to a new level – Tom Doctoroff

Deep insight in consumer behaviour is what marketing should offer, writes branding guru Tom Doctoroff, author of What Chinese Want: Culture, Communism, and China’s Modern Consumer, on his LinkedIn page. Cluttering that insight with “exaggerated faith in algorithms, programmatic efficacy and hyper-personalization,” is not helpful he adds. And: “Insights are not observations.”

Old trade warrior Robert Lighthizer leads the US fight against China – Arthur Kroeber

May last year Robert Lighthizer was sworn in as US trade representative. He is the key person to watch when a trade war between China and the US is developing, says leading economist Arthur Kroeber, author of China’s Economy: What Everyone Needs to Know®, in the South China Morning Post.

Our left-behind children – Zhang Lijia

Millions of migrant workers left behind their children in their home villages, developing mostly unheard problems. Author Zhang Lijia, who earlier published Lotus: A Novel on prostitution in China, is now working on a book on this hidden drama, including epidemic suicide, and she started publishing their stories in the South China Morning Post.

China “New Belt’ program ready for renovation – Harry Broadman

When China’s president Xi Jinping baptized his edition of the former silk road, he called it “One Belt, One Road”. That idea and its name went against the idea of the old silk road, which was an organic set of trade routes, says Harry Broadman, former PwC Emerging Markets Investment Leader, in the Gulf News. The centralized approach by Beijing does not appeal to all stakeholders, he says.

You need to understand religion to understand China – Ian Johnson

Journalist Ian Johnson, author of The Souls of China: The Return of Religion After Mao, explains what five books you need to read to understand China in a Five Books interview. Not surprisingly, those five books also focus on religion, just like Ian’s own bestseller. The search for a moral framework.

What if your customers cannot pronounce your name – Shaun Rein

Chinese brands like Huawei and Xiaomi have not only legal problems to enter the lucrative US market, says business analyst Shaun Rein, author of The War for China’s Wallet: Profiting from the New World Order. It would also help if potential buyers would be able to pronounce the name of the product they are expected to purchase, he tells the South China Morning Post.