Tat Hong's Towering Ambitions
Cultivate trusting and long lasting relationships at home and abroad
By Linus Goh
Head of Global Commercial Banking, OCBC Bank
Companies looking to expand internationally can learn from veteran entrepreneur Roland Ng and the Tat Hong team.
Over the past 30 years, Tat Hong had systematically grown into new markets across Asia Pacific. With each opportunity, Roland and team took the time to understand the market and to internalise how the group would effectively operate the overseas business.
This required a balance between localising the business with strong local talent and partnerships, and equipping the group leadership with cross-border market competencies.
Expanding overseas is increasingly an important imperative even for young businesses. The convenience of tapping into e-commerce marketplaces creates new and easier ways for businesses to internationalise. You can certainly discover customers and suppliers remotely and establish new relationships through the digital marketplace.
But this has its limits, and the experience of Roland bears it out: you still need to invest quality time in the markets and with your partners in order to cultivate trusting and long lasting relationships.