วันอาทิตย์ที่ 9 ตุลาคม พ.ศ. 2554

Simon Lichtenberg: the Founder and CEO of Trayton Group based in China by S. Lichtenberg

24 years ago, Simon Lichtenberg, arrived in China with the set conviction of doing trade. After working in timber trading in Malaysia, he established his first group with his US $30 000 that a friend lent him in 1993. Unluckily, his first trade efforts did not pay off the first time. After attempting to trade in many various commodities types, he gained his first commission from trade of African timber to Chinese Plywood makers. Lichtenberg, in his early twenties, was about resign and decided to leave China permanently when he joined hands with Danish furniture-maker firm, BoConcept, begin retailing its products in China. For Lichtenberg that was a beginning of his triumphal activity as entrepreneur. Simon Lichtenberg established his company, Trayton Group, in Shanghai in 1995. At first, with Lichtenberg possessing the license from BoConcept, his firm distributed only BoConcept-imported furniture all over Shanghai's furniture shops and shopping centers. Trayton Group's first-year sales were enormously profitable, with revenues amounting US $3.6 million. And that was mainly thanks to the contemporary and innovative designs of BoConcept's furniture which instantly attracted many young urban middle-class families who recently started purchase or lease habitations.

With US $6 million sales income in 1997, Simon Lichtenberg founded his own furniture factories. Then, he also began to sell his goods in other Chinese provinces like Beijing, Guangzhou, Hong Kong and Dalian. Now, Lichtenberg's Trayton Group has a business axis on modeling, labelling, manufacturing and supply of upholstery furniture and lifestyle goods. With its home base in Shanghai, the Group manufactures upholstery products in China and retails products to all over the world including the Chinese market. Trayton possesses 2 manufacturing plants in Shanghai and Zhejiang and it brings around US $100 million revenues and hires about 2 000 individuals. In 2010, the firm introduced the Danish first-class jewelry label Georg Jensen in China.At the same time, Lichtenberg also encountered some legal problems, namely concerning counterfeiting and nonpayment business. Starting 1997, Lichtenberg engaged himself in a extended and difficult legal fight against the proliferation of BoConcept fake goods, which he succeeded in the end. In 2005, Zhenjing Leather Factory accused Trayton Group for non-payment of products. After discovering the poor quality of Zhenjing's leather, Trayton checked the charges and returned the goods. Consequently, Trayton Group had some of its assets frozen for some time. Now, Simon Lichtenberg is a venerable public figure in China. In 2006, he obtained the Shanghai Magnolia Silver Award. He chairs the Shanghai Minhang Association of Enterprises with Foreign Investment, and the Fudan University Alumni Association for International Students; he is part of YPO and a board member of the Danish Chamber of Commerce in China. Lichtenberg is also a dynamic member of the Teachers association known as "Tvind".

About the Author

Simon Lichtenberg was brought up in the Danish Tvind Schools and spent several years in Africa as an adolescent. After achieving Chinese language and Sinology studies at Fudan University, in Shanghai in 1988, Simon Lichtenberg returned to Denmark to complete his studies.

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