By Elaine Dunn

Luxury electric car manufacturer Tesla Motors’ entry into China has not been exactly smooth.  And it is not for lack of orders.  In fact, quite the contrary!  

April deliveries were delayed, sparking protests and much negative online chatter.  As part of the protest, a disgruntled new owner took delivery of his April-promised car on June 27 and smashed its front windshield within minutes to show his anger and displeasure at Tesla!  

The reason for the delivery delay to areas outside of Beijing and Shanghai, as presented by Veronica Wu, general manager of Tesla China, was, “the lack of after-sales service centers and charging stations. Tesla needs to ensure that every single customer has a charging station within reach to deliver the perfect driving experience.”

Tesla had strong orders, but inadequate infrastructure.  Build-out of charging stations was slow and the need to have a charging outlet at the non Beijing-Shanghai car owner’s  residence is problematic.  Apparently, the new GM, Wu, had not thought through her 4P’s of marketing (price, product, promotion and place)!So what’s feeding the current online chatter?  The URL for Tesla’s Chinese website –  

Tesla does not have an official Chinese name either for its brand or for the site, i.e., it does not have equivalent Chinese characters for it, so Web users have been having a field day giving it one!  

China shaking off stereotype perception of poor quality

ASIA PACIFIC, March 6, 2014 – China ranks #9 overall in research conducted by FutureBrand, Interpublic Group’s global brand consultancy, into the reputation of countries of origin with consumers worldwide. In this inaugural 2014 “Made In” report, three Asian countries

Currency is fast becoming a key topic of conversation for bankers, reports Diao Ying in London.

The fashionable youths in hot pants flocking to high-end department stores in London and bankers in dark suits walking in and out of skyscrapers in the financial district have one thing in common, a growing interest in the Chinese currency.

During the recent holiday to celebrate the Diamond Jubilee of Queen Elizabeth II, Harrods, a department store known for its ties with the British royal family, launched its own Sina Weibo, a popular Chinese social media platform, to attract more Chinese customers. Shoppers can find "the very latest, limited edition and exclusive products", with Hermes, Chanel and Louis Vuitton among the most popular brands, according to the store's spokesman.

Minnesota exports of agricultural, mining and manufactured products grew 1.2 percent (up US$64 million) between the second quarters of 2011 and 2012 to US$5.4 billion. That broke the previous quarterly record of US$5.3 billion, set in the second quarter last year. U.S. export growth was 5.6 percent during the quarter.

Among all states, Minnesota ranked 20th in exports. Among the 20 largest exporting states, only Massachusetts experienced decreased exports during the period (down 18 percent).

Minnesota manufactured exports were up 3.4 percent to US$4.9 billion in the quarter, while U.S. manufactured exports increased 7.5 percent.

Katie Clark (far left), Executive Director of Minnesota Trade Office, with students from Carlson Consulting Enterprise from the Carlson School of Management at the University of Minnesota.By Greg Hugh, Staff Writer

The Minnesota Trade Office, supported by a grant from the McKnight Foundation, commissioned and guided a study by a team from the University of Minnesota’s Carlson Consulting Enterprise to determine how Minnesota can best benefit from an EB-5 program and to identify the best practices for establishing and operating EB-5 regional centers.

The EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program has been promoted as an economic development tool that offers U.S. residency in exchange for direct investment, often targeting rural and distressed areas.

The EB-5 visa for immigrant investors is a United States visa created by the Immigration Act of 1990. The Regional Center provision of the program is currently scheduled to end on Sept. 30, 2012.  This visa provides a method of obtaining a green card for foreign nationals who invest money in the United States.  To obtain the visa, individuals must invest US$1,000,000 (or a minimum of US$500,000 in a "Targeted Employment Area," i.e., a high unemployment or rural area), creating or preserving at least 10 jobs for U.S. workers excluding the investors and their immediate family.  Investments can be made directly in a job-generating commercial enterprise (new, or existing - "Troubled Business"), or into a "Regional Center" - a third-party-managed investment vehicle (private or public), which assumes the responsibility of creating the requisite jobs. Regional Centers may charge an administration fee for managing the investor's investment.

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