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Nihao, China! Swiss entrepreneur designs app to help foreigners in China

chinadaily.com.cn | Updated: 2017-06-29 15:11

Nihao, China! Swiss entrepreneur designs app to help foreigners in China

Lucas Rondez [Photo provided to China Daily]

"You cannot plan a good product or a good business model. You can only repeatedly try and test things out, adjust where necessary and make updates in a timely fashion." That's the business philosophy of Swiss entrepreneur Lucas Rondez, who has started his own business in Hangzhou, Zhejiang province.

Born in Geneva in 1983, the young Swiss man started working at the Union Bank of Switzerland at 16. His dealings with Chinese customers at the bank sparked an interest in China that eventually brought him to live and work in the world's second largest economy.

"The bank didn't have any businesses in China, and I could not speak a single word of Chinese. But I so eagerly wanted to come to China. I handed my resignation in on Monday, and by Friday, I was on the plane to China," Rondez said.

Nihao was the only phrase Rondez knew when he arrived in Hangzhou in 2007. The language barrier was so big and seemingly impenetrable that he felt like a 3-year-old again, virtually unable to communicate with the world around him. However, Nihao was not just a starting point in China for Rondez; it turned out to be the phrase that helped launch his career.

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