We are delighted to feature an interview with Joanne Chen, founder and managing director of Pearl Bridge Fashion.
Why did you come to the UK in the first place?
I came to the UK to complete a Masters in international marketing management at the University of Surrey in 2001, and I have lived here ever since.
What was the biggest challenge you had to overcome when you started doing business in the UK?
The biggest challenge I faced was the cultural differences. It took time to understand the behaviour of British consumers when purchasing fashion items.
What do you most like about the UK?
The multicultural environment, the openness of British people, and the British Summer.
What do you see as the biggest opportunities in the UK for Chinese businesses?
UK is a regulated market and safe place for investment. Technology, luxury market, commercial property definitely.
What do you most want Chinese people to know about the UK?
Quirky, creative, diplomatic … these are the basic traits of British people that I think Chinese people should know and learn from.
What is the best piece of business advice you have been given?
Be innovative, persistent and collaborative.
What would be your dream job if you didn’t work in business?
I would like to be a painter.
What is your biggest extravagance?
To have few weeks off not thinking about anything.
What is your favourite holiday destination?
Too many to mention. Brazil is on the list.
What piece of advice would you give your 25-year-old self?
Everything is possible. However, determination and persistence are the vital keys to success.