“Western Experts Did Not Distinguish Themselves” - American Firms Counseling Chinese Companies on US Acquisitions “Must do Better”

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In an article published today in China Business, global communications expert Josef Blumenfeld calls on Chinese businesses to learn from Haier and CNOOC's mistakes. Published in Chinese, Blumenfeld's article also points the finger at the American companies who failed their Chinese clients writing, "there is plenty of blame to go around."

In an article published today in China Business, Global Communications Expert Josef Blumenfeld, founder of Tradewind Strategies, calls on Chinese businesses to learn from the mistakes made during acquisition attempts by Haier and CNOOC and to adapt future efforts to the requirements of the US market. Published in Chinese, Blumenfeld also highlights the shortcomings of US firms that counseled both Chinese companies.

“There is plenty of blame to go around for this outcome and not all of it is for China – the Western advisors both Chinese companies hired share in that blame,” Blumenfeld writes.

“A great deal of prestige was squandered by these two losing efforts,” Blumenfeld explains. “Both the Chinese companies and the American firms they hired to help them secure these acquisitions lost face. As China's business community continues to recognize that it needs assistance with US efforts, it is imperative that the US companies serving that community provide the best counsel possible. While the legal and banking aspects of the deals may have been covered, these deals had no chance of winning the public relations battles that erupted – effectively ending any possibility of success.”

In China Business, Blumenfeld points to an August 3 editorial in the Financial Times that said “'surprisingly, given the importance of China to so many US companies, there was no sign of a balancing pro-China' message to counter Chevron's opposition to CNOOC's bid for Unocal.” He continues, “this was a PR failure more than anything. I'm surprised the PR and communications teams at the investment banking firms CNOOC and Haier tapped did not see this coming. Had they helped their clients weather the firestorm of controversy these bids ignited, those firms might not have lost out on millions of dollars in service fees.”

“By honestly and thoroughly assessing what went wrong in both efforts to acquire two very different companies,” Blumenfeld writes, “Chinese businesses and those they count on for advice and counsel can help ensure that the next chapter in China-US business is” successful. Blumenfeld continues, “the Chinese are recognizing that they need help in the US market, the American companies that serve China's businesses must, however, do better in helping them achieve their goals. There is remarkable talent at China's disposal – it is time for that talent to help China succeed.”

About Tradewind Strategies

Tradewind Strategies was founded by Josef Blumenfeld, a strategic communications professional with experience managing PR agencies and programs in 28 countries on six continents. As international markets continue to grow in importance, there is a growing need for experienced, global communications professionals. Tradewind Strategies is a consultancy that allows companies to identify international marketing resources and to expand their public relations and communications programs into these new and growing international markets. Clients have including global PR agencies, corporate global giants such as Wal-Mart and Philips, and smaller companies – both in the US, as well as in international markets. Blumenfeld has been quoted in worldwide press, including Fortune, The New York Times, Asian Wall Street Journal, China Business, Xinhua, Globo (Brazil), Media (Hong Kong), UPI, CMO, and Inc. More information can be found at http://www.tradewindstrategies.com

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