December 2011

Secured Sourcing; China Compliant Contracting -- Michael Sylvester

Secured Sourcing is our response to a recurring ‘Humpty Dumpty’ syndrome and the growing number of direct client requests for earlier assistance in their supply chain management than ever before.  Of course, Humpty Dumpty is a children’s nursery rhyme where ‘all the King’s horses and all the King’s men couldn’t put Humpty Dumpty together again…’   
 
For, while China is a great place to do business, it can be a very unforgiving environment when things go wrong.   So, rather than having to look across the conference table and explain to yet another client that there is no cost effective solution to put the pieces together again, we thought we would simply turn that situation around and help people get what they really needed the first time.
 

Practicing Law in China; Closing out 2011 Michael Sylvester

IMG_5856_1.JPG 

This photo is at the top of a mountain pass heading south out of the Yabuli Ski Area in north China.  To get there, just head for the North Pole and take a left just before you see Santa.   It was - 30 C or so that day and was quite lovely when the wind stopped blowing...  There is even a ClubMed up there if you want to come and are too afraid of Chinese hotel service, which can be a bit scary if you are not used to it.

 

China continues to be, once and again, a strikingly beautiful place...when you get away from the sort of crowds that those living in the West can only imagine.  And what can we say about 2011 coming to a close other than, phew!!

 

IMG_5856_1.JPG

IMG_5856_1.JPG

China's New Rich and what some of them think about themselves... Michael Sylvester

We have tried hard to describe the impact of living in a boom economy and what it makes people think of themselves...and this weekend my wife and I snuck off for a quiet beach getaway and found this article as the cover story of a magazine available in each room of the hotel.
 
The Top Percentile
 

fulcrum.jpg

fulcrum.jpg

Corporate counsel in China: Tap dancing in a mine field? Michael Sylvester

This quick post is aimed at those of us who are providing guidance as corporate / in house counsel for our multinational clients operating here in Mainland China.
 
In Mainland China, as in the West, corporate or in house counsel are charged with evaluating a proposed or actual course of conduct of their client, generally in the form of Board reports on where to draw the line between permissible and impermissible activity and risk / reward scenarios. For example, we have all heard the oft asked question, what is the downside if we get caught?
 
So, we advise what should be done and then, quite often, are overruled by the Board that chooses to carry forward some questionalbe course of conduct because of how it impacts the bottom line. And damn if that whole attorney client privilege thing prevents us from doing much other than putting our hands in our pockets and looking at our shoes as it all happens.
 

Being a small town lawyer in Shenzhen, China Michael Sylvester

 shenzhen.jpg

Occasionally we are asked what it is like living in China...chaotic, crowded & forward thinking might be a good start -- as you can see from this snapshop of a part of the city center.

 

But at base, we are just small town lawyers in the 'city' of foreigners here.  According to Chinese immigration records, there are about 700,000 foreign workers here in China with 200,000 of them being here in Shenzhen.

 

So, when you add in the family members of those ex-patriots here, you might say there are half a million of us here.  Like I said, we are just small town lawyers...

 

 

shenzhen.jpg

shenzhen.jpg

800px-Shenzhen-skyline.jpg

800px-Shenzhen-skyline.jpg