Behind the Scenes
Behind the Scenes is a combination of updates on future books, as well as comments and questions I’ve received from readers.
Latest Book Going to Press
Above is the cover of my latest book, Piercing the Great wall of Corporate China. The design department at iUniverse did, as usual, a great job in their cover illustration. I’m very grateful to my longtime editor, Sarah Disbrow, in helping coordinate this project. This is the fourth book she’s edited for me, and I’m very lucky working with someone of such immense talent. You should be able to purchase the e-book version at Barnes & Noble, Amazon, and around 30 other online book sellers in about four to eight weeks. The printed version should be available in two or so. The disparity in timing arises from the fact that it takes a while to put a book in an e-book format.
I have three more books in the pipeline. However, these are fiction novels. I thought it’d be a fun way to learn about China in a non-traditional manner. These are fast-paced reads in the vein of a Brad Thor, David Baldacci, or Steve Berry novel. Not that I’m comparing myself to these great authors, but I believe you’ll have a hard for it to put down once you start. The Archivist is the first, and I’ll provide you with excerpts in the coming months.
Author given prestigious Rising Star designation by publisher
iUniverse, a subsidiary of the Group Penguin, a trade publisher which is part of Penguin Random House, has given this author its prestigious Rising Star designation. This award is based on the publisher’s belief that Piercing the Great Wall of Corporate China is topically timely and noteworthy. The genesis for this book can be traced back to 2009 when a rash of fraudulent business practices by Chinese companies began to surface. Almost every day one could open a newspaper and find new allegations of financial irregularities, or the non-existence of significant corporate assets that previously appeared in the audited financials of a US listed Chinese company. Soon no one believed that any public or private Chinese company was honest, or that their financials could be trusted. Over the course of the next two years 50 China-based companies were delisted from US securities exchanges. The value of Chinese stocks plummeted, investors lost billions of dollars, and foreign financing for Chinese companies soon dried up. Performing forensic due diligence on Chinese companies for as long as we have, I and my co-author both knew that what the newspapers were now reporting had, in fact, been going on for a substantial period of time. We’d performed forensic due diligence on scores of Chinese companies, and managed to uncover these same types of issues over the years on a multitude of the companies that we examined. The issue was, standard due diligence practices were not always effective in unmasking problems within Chinese companies. A new set of metrics was needed. Therefore, we decided to write Piercing the Great Wall of Corporate China. The book should be available in both hard and soft cover, as well as in an e-book format, within the next month.
Author’s Latest Book Receives Award
On March 29, 2016 I was honored to be notified by my publisher that my latest book, Piercing the Great Wall of Corporate China: How to Perform Forensic Due Diligence on Chinese Companies has just received the prestigious Editor’s Choice Award from iUniverse, a subsidiary of the Group Penguin, a trade publisher which is part of Penguin Random House. This is my second such award – the first I received for The Wild Wild East: Lessons for Success in Business in Contemporary Capitalist China.
Many people have asked me why due diligence is more difficult to perform in China, than in other countries. The answer to that question is that philosophically, culturally, and business-wise Chinese companies seem to operate on a different plane than businesses in most other countries. The primary reason for this is that China has historically been an isolationist country cut off from interaction with the global business community for all but the last thirty-eight years. During this isolation Chinese society and businesses have developed their own morality, ethics, cultural leanings, and business practices. Western cultures, in contrast, developed their norms of business behavior, and an ethical and moral equilibrium in international dealings with one another, over a period of centuries. As a result, the methodology of performing forensic due diligence in China can vary widely from that performed in other countries.
What I, and my co-author David Dodge, provide in Piercing the Great Wall of Corporate China is the comprehensive knowledge base and tools necessary to delve deeper into the business and financial fabric of a Chinese company and understand the obvious, and not so obvious, factors that make performing accurate and comprehensive forensic due diligence on a Chinese company so challenging.
What have I been up to?
For the past two plus years I’ve been writing and, therefore, haven’t been adding anything new to my author web site. During that time, I finished my fourth business book, Piercing the great Wall of Corporate China: How to Perform Forensic Due Diligence on Chinese Companies. I also wrote several works of fiction. The working titles are The Archivist, The Abductions, and The Payback. I expect the first and second of these to be out this year, with The Payback being published early in 2017. I’ll publish much more detail about all these books shortly.
New Book Coming Soon
My new business book, Piercing the great Wall of Corporate China: How to Perform Forensic Due Diligence on Chinese Companies should be published by the end of March, although I don’t as yet have an exact date because it’s currently in its final edit before print. I’m very excited about its publications because I believe this is the most definitive book written on how to perform forensic due diligence on Chinese companies.
When the book was completed, I sent it to a number of professionals for review, and ensure it was accurate, to the best of their knowledge. The comments I received were extraordinary, and I wanted to share some of their comments with you.
As Managing Director of a U.S. Accounting firm with a specialty in auditing Pacific Rim companies, I can personally attest to the underlying premise and motivating impetus for this book. China is too important a market and too big an opportunity to ignore.
Negative broad-brush publicity has blackened all Chinese companies, leaving U.S investors and joint partners with only two choices: completely abandon China, or up their due diligence efforts to separate the wheat from the chaff.
Chinese companies exist in a unique financial, governmental, and business environment. As such, if you are going to participate in the Chinese market, it is essential that you understand and execute a unique due diligence methodology.
This is a book that needed to be written. It provides the tools necessary to perform forensic due diligence and evaluate opportunities.
Think of it as a Chinese tool box made in the USA.
Corey Fischer, Managing Partner, Weinberg & Company, Certified Public Accountants
This will be the Bible on how to conduct due diligence in China. The authors have done a masterful job of walking deal-makers and their advisors through the intricacies of Chinese society, which is indispensable in order to understand the cultural differences that make getting a deal done in China like no other place on Earth.
Lance Jon Kimmel, SEC Law Firm
If you want to peel back the layer upon layer of secrecy that surrounds a Chinese company and find out what you’re really getting into, buy this book. There’s no better guide on how to perform forensic due diligence on a Chinese company. The authors take their considerable experience in performing forensic due diligence in China, and have placed it in an easy to comprehend guide for analyzing a Chinese company. This book will become the new standard for performing forensic due diligence in China.
Scott Cray, Co-author of Doing the China Tango and Conducting Business in the Land of the Dragon
I have known Alan Refkin for 20+ years and co-author David Dodge for 15+ years. I have worked with both men on China Projects, one as early as 2005. I worked with Alan helping small companies develop revenue streams and with David I mentored him for many years in a small company CFO position. Both authors are talented, experienced and well-educated. David Dodge is one of the most knowledgeable SEC/SOX people in the industry.
Alan Refkin is one of the most experienced people about China in the investment community. I have read and/or reviewed all of his China subject matter books. This one is by far the most detailed and complete prescription for doing business in China, or working with Chinese companies who want to be listed on US Stock Exchanges.
This book can serve two purposes: First, as a reference book for anyone thinking about investing in China. Secondly, developing business relationships leading to an IPO with a Chinese company. It is a complete road map for either objective. All one needs to do is review the chapter headings, and the subject matter within, for a very complete education about dealing with the Chinese, particularly Chinese Banks.
J. Keil, Co-Founder Keil Partners, LLC