Dear Milad, could you briefly introduce yourself?
I am Milad NOURI from Nantes. I have been based in Hangzhou for 12 years.
Could you briefly introduce your company?
I am the co-founder and Chairman of China Consultants Int’l Ltd. A service and consulting company specialised in product development and sourcing in China. Since 2016 I have co-founded an IT company called YOOSourcing which is a mobile app for international trade.
Why not Shanghai ? :-) I am from a small town in France (Nantes). I lived one year in Shanghai but I preferred moved to the small town of Hangzhou (8 million population).
In your opinion, what France should bring to China?
Talents, creativity, processes and cheese.
In your opinion, what China should bring to France?
Speed, speed and speed. For me being a French entrepreneur in China are like driving a car. We need to use the accelerator (Chinese mindset) to go fast and time to time the brake (French mindset) to slow down, analyse, forecast… The most difficult part is to know how to use the clutch to make sure that you go fast and safe. The bottom line: To be a successful entrepreneur you need to know how to drive in Shanghai.
Would you rather be a key employee of big company of your choice or be founder of a humble company? Why?
I actually never really worked long time for a big company but I feel very good where I am as a small entrepreneur. The most valuable asset that I have is my freedom.
Would you rather work on your dream idea that nobody want to support or work on a common idea that investors want to fund? Why?
I believe that is difficult to achieve great things alone. So I like to cooperate with other entrepreneurs and investors.
Would you rather fail all your startups but have a rich social life or make your startup successful but use 5 years of your life cloistered like a hermit? Why?
I don’t think having a rich social life affect the result of my company. For me entrepreneurs should keep a good balance between their companies and social life. Sometimes it is good to go out of office to meet new people and refresh your mind. Having an extensive social network can be also a good source opportunities.
Would you rather go to your workplace wearing a Chinese tunic or go dressed like a typical frenchman (beret and striped jersey)? Why?
Well if it is not halloween, then none of these two options.
Would you rather know how to code like a boss or be able to talk decently in Chinese? Why?
Living in Hangzhou your survival can depend on your level of Chinese language. It was good for me to move to Hangzhou because I had to learn Chinese.
Would you rather get started with an awesome prototype or get started with a clever partner? Why?
Clever partner to develop a better prototype.
Would you rather spend a day in private with Jack Ma or receive 1 million renminbi? Why?
1 million RMB because I can watch him on Youku.
Would you rather live in Chongming District or share a flat with your business cofounder? Why?
Live in Chongming with a full time ayi. I can be very messy sometimes and make my business cofounder angry.
Would you rather have free Kong Pao chicken anytime for life or deprive yourself of french gastronomy for 1 year? Why?
I am a French food addict. When you see me you understand.
If you were a Chinese province, which one would you be? Why?
Zhejiang province of course. As I know it very well. We can find a very good balance between business and quality of life in Zhejiang.
Any advice in 3 words to give to those who would like to try their luck in entrepreneurship in Shanghai?
Learn, adapt and ask for help.