Ting Zhang, the founder and CEO of Cambridge-based Crayfish.io – the unique online platform dedicated to helping Western companies do business in China – provides insight into the sectors and industries which offer the most potential for UK and international companies in the Chinese market.
Where are the opportunities for business in China?
Speaking at a recent webinar for the China-Britain Business Council (CBBC), Ting said: "Most organisations are keen to find out how to sell their products or services into China. The good news is that, no matter what sector you are in, there are some business opportunities, but some sectors offer more potential and are quicker to get into. These include:
- Artificial intelligence (AI)/Machine Learning
AI is absolutely the hottest area in China. A lot of investment has been made in this field and if you are in this sector you will find that it is a door that has already been opened in many places.
Education has also been one of the most promising sectors. In fact, there is also a lot of investment into the UK to enable Chinese students to undergo British education, with service providers including schools and technology companies.
- Elderly care solutions
As most people know, Chinese society has aged rapidly, more rapidly than people expected. The latest data says that in about 10-15 years’ time, 60% of the population will be over 60, so there are a lot of opportunities there, whether you provide infrastructure or other services for elderly care.
The Chinese economy has been growing at a speed that no other market can match, so for e-commerce companies, the opportunities remain abundant. Retailers can sell your brand to China, while logistic and transportation providers play an important role. Electronic payment methods such as WeChat pay or AliPay are now everywhere.
- Agriculture – technology and food safety
This sector has always been important, but now, particularly with the government’s determination to ensure food is safer, there is a lot government support available.
- Medical devices
This has also been one of the sectors with ongoing opportunities, but recently some regulations have made the business easier for Western companies. For example, clinical trial results for medical devices from elsewhere are now accepted, whereas in the past the trials had to be conducted in China.
Of course, setting up in China or doing business there depends on a wide variety of factors –most importantly, the ability to communicate effectively with both Chinese partners and customers. Crayfish.io, with its bank of Chinese business experts and talented bilingual freelancers, is ideally placed to help.
Crayfish.io matches talented Chinese speaking professionals with Western businesses who need help in dealing with their Chinese partners and audiences, providing a source of qualified people to undertake projects and offer information, knowledge and cultural insight.
Business users post their projects on to the site and freelancing Chinese speakers bid for the work, with the transaction carried out through the web-based Crayfish.io platform. Users pay a fee after they accept a freelancer's proposal, with payment – less commission – released on completion of the job. The Crayfish team also offers to project manage on behalf of the client for larger and more complex tasks. Find out more here
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