|Young entrepreneur shares the African dream|
Updated: 2011-12-09 08:10
By Zhou Siyu (
After graduation, He Liehui's ambition was to become a judge. But nagged by his father, he took a flight to
Still in his early 30s, He is too young by Chinese standards to be termed successful. His company, Touchroad International Holdings Group, has more than 500 employees and operates in more than 20 countries in
He bases his assumptions on a decade of hard work and dedication. He first went to
His business gradually picked up. But the decisive point for his "take-off" came with a huge amount of compensation payment to a client. A Nigerian client had ordered clothing worth $700,000 under a deal signed in the early spring of 2001, which he regarded as an auspicious omen for more successes in the coming year.
He knew little about clothing, but soon contacted some Chinese factories and started production. However, with no details of technical requirements stipulated in the contract with the Nigerian client, he could only give the producers a vague description of what he wanted. As a result, the quality of products varied from one factory to another. At last, unsatisfied with the clothing, the client requested a compensation of $200,000.
The amount was too much for He to bear at that time and he could have dismissed the client on contractual grounds. But he did not. Instead, he negotiated with the client and decided to pay the amount in installments.
"African clients are different from clients in the
The Nigerian client was touched by He's sincerity and they became good friends. He then introduced many friends to He, and that put his business on a track of fast development.
"Compared with businessmen from the
The opening-up of
Now with ties between
"Many industries in African countries are booming without being noticed, such as modern services sector and tourism. These opportunities are very precious," he said. "But above all, you should go and be there. If you have never been in