另一種候鳥——香港商人登陸台灣

:::

1989 / 8月

文‧劉麗真 圖‧黃麗梨


十年前,「港劇」正流行時,「楚留香」、「無花和尚」、「小龍女」一干英雄俠女,俠風掃遍台灣,就連那聽不懂的廣東話,入耳都覺得新鮮有趣。現在,電視連續劇堛漕k女主角,港星不比「土產」的少,不過,他們受歡迎的程度,卻不能和十年前相比。這其中,最主要的原因是,「港人」愈來愈多了……


據報載,中華民國駐香港簽證核發辦事處指出,北平天安門事件之後,每天申請赴台簽證的人數,增加逾倍。此外,詢問在台投資及永久居留事宜者,也由去年的一日數件增加為目前的每日八十餘件。

其實在天安門事件發生之前,尤其是最近幾年,港商來台投資的件數、金額已有明顯上升的趨勢。以香港人從事最多的服務業來說,民國七十五、七十六、七十七這三年,經濟部投資審議委員會通過港商來台投資的件數分別是四件、十一件和四十一件,總金額各為二百八十五萬、八百九十萬和一億一千萬美元,成長率驚人。

不只是市場好

「來台投資,主要是看中這邊的市場」,The Cotton Collection服飾台灣分公司負責人李敏開門見山地說,台灣自從解嚴、解除外匯管制後,投資環境較以往更開放,加上所得提高,人們消費能力增加等等,都是香港總公司決定在一年多前到台灣投資的原因。

三年多前成立台灣分公司的李奧貝納廣告公司,也是基於同樣的理由,不過台灣這個市場除了「錢多」,還有許多其他市場所無法具備的吸引力。該公司創意總監倫潔瑩在香港總公司待了九年,一年前選擇到台灣任職。她覺得除了「九七」的陰影和事業發展的考慮之外,文化背景更是其中重要的決定因素。「如果沒有相似的文化背景,我的創意恐怕得不到最好的發揮。」

去年八月才來台籌設震寰有限公司,經營期貨買賣的劉夢熊認為,與其到金融發達的先進國家「錦上添花」,還不如回到正處於經濟自由化、國際化「起飛」階段的台灣投資。

劉夢熊說,「九七」之後,長久以來扮演亞洲金融中心角色的香港,「戲份」顯然會改變,而按照台灣目前投資環境開放、游資充沛的條件看來,算是東南亞地區最有資格承接香港功能的地方。

另方面,他認為到台灣「可以在更寬廣的空間媯o展個人事業,得到一種個人事業與國家前途緊密結合的滿足感。」

記得當時「店面」小

而事實上,早自解嚴之前,甚至於十幾年前,就有不少來自香港的開路先鋒,衝進台灣來了。

那個時候,他們「相」中的又是那些優點呢?很簡單,主要的還是台灣的市場潛力。

生意人的腦筋靈活,「生意鼻」敏銳,他們「嗅」到了台灣將隨著國民所得的增加而提高消費能力。

香港貝詩美髮美容公司董事長戴東尼,回憶十年前他剛到台灣創業時,店面只有二十坪,員工八名,椅子七張,而如今分店有九家,員工總數在二百人左右。

一開始,也不是很容易打江山的。

香港詩藝髮型設計公司負責人鮑錦嘉說,十四年前他和兩位朋友來台開業,起初由於語言不通,隨身還得帶個翻譯跟客人溝通;而且當時台灣一般人,並沒有髮型設計的概念,他們花了心思為顧客造型,卻招來客人們「不按指示行事」的抱怨。

「所幸沒有多久,客人就習慣了,願意接受我們的建議,其中一位客人,還成了我太太」,或許因為妻子是本地人,或許因為生意順利,鮑錦嘉目前家在台灣,偶爾才回香港;而且在太太調教下,如今不但講話聽不出廣東腔,就連閩南語都說得很流利了。「全是給逼出來的,『沒法度』,有些生意人就是不跟你講國語。」

名侯珠寶公司負責人侯志成也談到他四、五年前初到「敝寶地」學國語的情形,「走在路上,看見每一塊招牌都張嘴大聲念,然後請旁邊的人糾正,總之,膽子要大、皮要厚。」

不按牌理出牌

膽大皮厚雖然可以很快克服語言不通的障礙,但是根據多位港商反應,膽子再大也受不了台灣若干相互矛盾的法令;面皮再厚也擋不住日益惡化的空氣汙染、交通問題。

鮑錦嘉舉例說,他剛來台灣創業時,按照規定「乖乖地」去申請營業執照。不過後來他才知道還是有不少人「不按牌理出牌」,根本不申請執照。「非法營業的人不但不用繳稅,而且也沒有受到任何法令約束,這種規定難道是在保障『壞人』,扼殺『好人』嗎?」他覺得如此一來,實在很難鼓勵大眾守法。

來台不久的李敏也表示,和台灣相比,香港的空間更狹小,工作步調更快,但是秩序卻較為井然,這顯然是香港政府用心規劃的結果,「在香港,塞車情況比台灣嚴重,但卻從來不見亂鳴喇叭、任意變換車道等違規行為。」

人情味濃厚

「不過,以工作氣氛來說,台灣給我的感覺比香港好得多」,李敏說,香港人做生意很現實,一分一毫算得清清楚楚;台灣商人交易雖也乾脆,但人情味濃厚,讓她有「賓至如歸」之感。像她剛到台灣來租店面時,房東在對公司做完「身家調查」後,覺得挺滿意就簽約了。後來公司開張,房東不但多次前來垂詢,還自行為房子添「行頭」。「在國外,合約就是合約,一切按約行事,在台灣,合約是一回事,合約上沒說清楚的,大家好商量。」

俗語說:「入境隨俗」,港人做生意的方式是否也隨俗呢?

擁有十幾年珠寶鑲工經驗的侯志成顯然不是。他認為,台灣商人做生意遠不如香港人積極,就他認識的本地同業來說,很少有人像他這麼勤快、主動爭取客戶的。

「我不在乎別人聽不聽得懂我的國語,只要我常和客戶保持聯絡,他們就會知道我夠誠意」,侯志成很多生意就是這樣跑來的。

這一點,或許是台商應該學習的。

遠來的「師父」會念經

侯志成說,國內近幾年,在消費潛力領軍下,珠寶市場擴張得相當迅速,由於需求數量加大,因此,鑲工技術「略高一籌」的香港師父,一時之間成了搶手貨。

「香港師父相繼來台,對提昇台灣鑲工技術,有很大的幫助」,宏福金銀珠寶公司公關副總經理湯夢輝,曾任珠寶公會總幹事五年之久。他說,台灣鑲工技術之所以能在短時間之內,追上泰國、日本,達到與香港平行的地步,這批「遠來的師父」功不可沒。

同時,根據瞭解,宏福公司在香港的「大老闆」周大福先生有意前來台灣開設珠寶工廠,以從事大量生產。如果因此對國內傳統珠寶業者產生刺激,或許可以像麥當勞進軍台灣一樣,產生良性競爭。

此外,港人到台灣,也造成其他方面的影響。

民國七十五月十一月,政府正式宣佈開放黃金自由進口,當時由於黃金市場封閉已近四十年,一旦開放了,業者普遍產生「適應不良」症,市場一片紛亂——不但黃金條塊訂價偏高,而且每台兩進出差價高達新台幣五百元;加上黑市大盤趁機興風作浪,搞得一般業者只有「邊看邊做」的份。

民國七十六年宏福以華僑回國投資程序申請來台設立公司,引進黃金期貨交易。他們提供國外最新資訊,依據國際金價訂定合理價位,並隨時按國際金價起伏同步調整;同時,將每台兩進出差價訂為新台幣四十元,迫使一般經營黃金現貨買賣的銀樓業者,也不得不使售價更為合理化。

此外宏福公司還租用路透社、美聯社國際線路,以便使國內消費者與投資者能隨時掌握國際金價的變動狀況,並透過國際線路,將國內黃金動態,介紹至國際黃金市場,這麼一來,使國內與國際的黃金行情,連成一線,無形中拓展了黃金交易空間。

管理高手

香港商人在管理上確是有一套,也值得人一探究竟。

「在服務業經營上,除了專業技術之外,管理制度的建立也很重要」,湯夢輝強調。

鮑錦嘉也指出,來台投資的港商幾乎是「清一色」的服務業者,不管是早期憑藉個人技藝的餐飲、珠寶鑲工、美髮業,或是近幾年以專業知識為後盾的金融、期貨、廣告代理等皆然。服務業首重人才,留住人才的方法無他,「建立屬於自己的企業文化,並透過福利、待遇,盡可能滿足員工需求。」

說來簡單,做起來呢?

李敏的做法是發給公司員工每人一本「管理手冊」,手冊婺有抽象的經營理念、具體的銷售方法等等,主要著眼是建立員工共識,「我們的目的不是把衣服賣出去,而是讓顧客真正覺得滿意,同時,還要求員工建立顧客資料,定期與顧客保持聯絡。」但這也不表示發一本書就算了,管理者還需花很多時間、心力和員工溝通。

至於李奧貝納的方式是,儘量提供員工出國觀摩機會,除了工作上出國拍片之外,還有每年定期赴總公司短期進修的名額,讓同仁在工作中可以不斷進步。

「整體的世界觀,加上新事物的刺激,對廣告這行很重要」,倫潔瑩認為錢應該花在刀口上。

此外,標榜「純剪派」的香港貝詩,則在董事長戴東尼明快的手法下,「剪」出了九家分公司的規模。

大約在六、七年前,戴東尼即定期舉辦技術發表會,作為增加知名度的方式之一;同時他和稻江商職、強恕高中等校建立建教合作關係,以保持員工來源不虞匱乏。此外,他讓員工、幹部持有公司股份,以留住好的人才。上個月,他還創辦了公司內部刊物,配合已經開設的語文、音樂、插花班,提供員工休閒活動。

統一超商經理黃惠煐指出,港商有計畫、有組織地塑造企業形象,爭取消費者信賴的做法,對本地傳統業者來說,不免造成衝擊和刺激;同時,港商為求登陸成功,莫不集中火力「搶灘」,引進為數可觀之產品,這對加速台灣現代化、國際化的腳步,助益頗大。

樹大有枯枝

不過,俗語說得好:「樹大有枯枝」,「香港經驗」固然能全面提昇國內金融、服務業水準,但還是產生了若干「副作用」。

有些業者仗著自己經驗豐富,來台發展時會「欺生」,期貨業就是一例。

震寰公司總裁劉夢熊指出,以期貨買賣而言,操盤人員在接到顧客買單時,應按照正常程序,直接投進市場堨h;但有些操盤人員不甘只賺取手續費,而根據自己的經驗估計市場漲跌,暫時將買單扣在手上,然後再「適時」出手,從中牟利。這樣一來,不但使原有之市場機能無法發揮,更因為風險增加,易於造成惡性倒閉,使顧客的利益蒙受損害。

這種甘冒風險、急功近利的行為雖然不普遍,但是「賺一票就走」的心理卻不稀奇。

針對這種心理,香港大學經濟系主任張五常,在其「賣桔者言」一書中曾經指出,由於長期置於「租借歸還」的陰影之下,使香港人產生「賺一票就走」的心態。

「有些香港人到台灣來,只是想賺錢,沒打算長住」,原先和鮑錦嘉合資開店的兩個朋友,一個已經過世,一個則在賺了些錢之後,返回香港發展。

政大國際關係研究中心邢國強教授認為,香港人普遍對台灣安全不抱太大信心,他們不願移民台灣的主要理由,是不想再「跑第二次」!

另一種候鳥

因此,他們多半拿的是英國護照,其次是加拿大、美國和澳洲護照。縱使他們在台灣有個「家」,但還是寧願一個禮拜、十天、半個月、或半年往返一次。

「不管怎麼說,對香港人來說,香港是個『天堂』」,倫潔瑩說,除了購物方便、便宜之外,香港所提供的工作機會和挑戰,也是別處比不上的,很多香港人取得歐美居留權,還是照常回香港工作,居留權對他們來說,只是一種心理保障。

當然,這種保障可不是容易拿到的,「沒辦法」的人也只有等待,想想其他的出路,而台灣正是其中一個選擇。姑且不論他們的心態為何,至少對台灣的影響可能是利大於弊。

而台灣除了接受港人來台另謀天地的刺激外,是否也該積極地化為行動?畢竟,我們沒有理由輸人!

〔圖片說明〕

P.87

(上)「生意鼻」敏銳的美容業者,算得上港商來台投資的開路先鋒。

P.87

(下)「服務」和「品質」是港商來台搶地盤的兩大法寶。

P.89

(上)武俠劇「楚留香」登陸台灣之後,不但掀起一片「港劇熱」,更帶給國內電視圈頗大的刺激。(中視公司宣傳組提供)

P.89

(下)台灣的珠寶鑲工技術之所以能進步神速,「香港師父」功不可沒。

P.91

香港銀樓業者以「最新的資訊」和「合理的價格」,作為登陸台灣的主要籌碼。

P.93

(上)相似的文化背景、寬闊的發展空間,是吸引「廣告人」自港來台的主因。

P.93

(下)台灣現有的期貨觀念,幾乎全是由香港人傳授的。(張良綱攝)

相關文章

近期文章

EN

Another Kind of Migratory Bird--Hong Kong Businessmen Come to Taiwan

Liou Lih-jen /photos courtesy of Lily Huang /tr. by Phil Newell

Ten years ago, when Hong Kong TV dramas became the rage, the heroes and heroines of the martial arts dramas became popular across the island. Even their indecipherable Cantonese seemed fresh and fascinating to the ears. Today, among TV stars, there are as many Hong Kong stars as locally bred ones. But they're not as popular as they were ten years ago. The main reason is that there are more and more "Hongkongers". . . .


According to reports, the ROC visa office in Hong Kong has pointed out that, since the Tienanmen incident, the number of people applying for visas to Taiwan has multiplied many times. And the number inquiring about investing or permanent residence in Taiwan is up from a few per day last year to today's more than 80 per day.

In fact, even before the Tienanmen incident, especially in the past few years, cases of investment and total investment volume from Hong Kong to Taiwan have risen clearly. In the service industry, the area engaged in most by Hongkongers, the number of investments from Hong Kong approved by the Investment Commission in 1986, 1987, and 1988 was 4, 11, and 41, with amounts of NT$2.85, 8.9, and 110 million, respectively.

"The main reason is the market on this side," explained Lily Lee, managing director of the Taiwan branch of The Cotton Collection (Hong Kong) Ltd. After the lifting of martial law and controls on foreign exchange, the investment environment is more open. Add to this that incomes have increased, and consumption capacity is up--all these are reasons why the parent company decided to come to Taiwan more than a year ago.

Leo Burnett Company, Ltd., opened in Taiwan three years ago for many of the same reasons. But Creative Director Kitty Lun-chan also says that cultural background was a decisive factor: "Without a similar cultural background, I'm afraid I couldn't really get the most out of my creativity."

Getting started isn't easy.

Sunny Pao of the Se-yi Hong Kong Styling House recalls that when they came to Taiwan 14 years ago, because of language problems they had to have a translator with them when talking to customers. And at that time most people in Taiwan still didn't really have the concept of hair styling: they would rack their brains to come up with a style, only to hear complaints that "you didn't do it as I asked." Fortunately customers got used to the idea, and one of them became Pao's wife. He now makes his home in Taiwan, and, under his wife's tutelage, he not only has no trace of a Cantonese accent, he's even mastered Taiwanese.

Tony Hau of the Hau Chi Shing Jewelry Company talks about studying Mandarin when he first arrived four or five years ago. "I would read aloud every sign walking on the road, and ask passersby to correct my pronunciation; it took a lot of courage and a thick skin."

But many Hongkongers respond that even with great courage they can't stand some of Taiwan's legal contradictions. And thick skin can't stand up to the ever worsening air pollution and traffic problems.

Sunny Pao says, for example, that when he came to Taiwan he went "like a nice boy" to register and get a license. Only later did he know that a lot of people just open up without licenses. "Not only do they not have to pay tax, they don't have any legal restrictions. Is it possible this is to protect the 'bad guys' and wipe out the good guys?" He feels that, given this, it's really hard to encourage people to obey the law.

"However, in terms of working environment, Taiwan gives me a lot better feeling than Hong Kong," says Lily Lee. Hong Kong businessmen are calculating. Though Taiwan businessmen are no nonsense in doing business, they are more warm and considerate too. After her shop opened, her landlord not only came to visit many times, he even provided furnishing. "In Taiwan, a con tract is one thing. If something's not in the contract, everybody can discuss it easily."

"When in Rome. . . ." it is said. Have Hongkongers adapted to local business?

Tony Hau says it's not the case. He believes that Taiwan people are far less intense doing business than Hongkongers. And, with demand for jewelry booming under the impetus of greater consumer power, the work of a Hong Kong master, with a slightly higher level of skill, is immediately embraced. Meng-huei Tang, assistant general manager for public relations at the Hung Foo Bullion Company, points out that these "wandering masters" have done much to raise the level of skills in the industry as a whole.

But the impact of Hongkongers in Taiwan does not stop there.

When restrictions on gold trading were lifted in November, 1986, the Taiwan gold market was thrown into disarray by the sudden demand, spawning an NT$500 gap between the international and domestic sales prices of a tael, as well as a black market. In 1987, after passing through the application process for overseas Chinese, Hung Foo introduced gold futures to Taiwan. Using the latest information, they were able to match changes in the international price of gold step for step. They set the home cost at only NT$40 above the international price. Traditional gold houses couldn't but rationalize prices.

Hong Kong managing also deserves a look. Sunny Pao points out that almost all the Hong Kong businesses to come here are in services, which most stress people: there's no other way to keep people than "to build a corporate culture and, through benefits and salary, satisfy worker demands as much as possible." Lily Lee hands out a "management handbook" to all employees to help build a common view. But you can't just give out a book and forget it--the managers have to spend a lot of time communicating with employees.

Tony Tai, chairman of the Hong Kong Bess Beauty Salon, now with nine shops in Taiwan, opened up cooperative relations with secondary schools to maintain the flow of new manpower. He gives his workers and staff stock in the company. Last month, he initiated an in-house magazine to go with existing language, music, and flower arranging classes, to provide employees with leisure activities.

While "the Hong Kong experience" can stimulate and elevate the local service industry, it is not without side-effects.

Lew Mon-hung, president of Solidlink Futures, Inc., says that some in his field take risks with clients' money for personal gain. While not common, the attitude of "take the money and run" is not especially unusual. Some say Hongkongers are this way because the colony lives on borrowed time. Professor Hsing Kuo-chiang of National Chengchi University says Hongkongers have little trust in Taiwan's safety; they are not willing to immigrate here because they don't want to have to run again.

Therefore, most keep British passports, or, less commonly, Canadian, U.S., or Australian. Even if they have homes in Taiwan, they prefer to go back to Hong Kong regularly. "No matter what," says Kitty Lun-chan, "for Hongkongers, Hong Kong is heaven." Besides cheap and convenient shopping, Hong Kong offers job opportunities and challenges unavailable elsewhere. Even those with residence permits abroad return to work in Hong Kong; the permit is just a psychological guarantee.

Of course, this kind of "guarantee" is not easy to get. For those who can't get it, they have to think of some other way out, and Taiwan is one path. Forget for the moment their underlying motives; at least they have more positive than negative influences on Taiwan.

Will Taiwan act in response to the stimulus Hongkongers bring? After all, there's no reason why Taiwan should lose out to anyone!

[Picture Caption]

(Above) Those in the beauty salon business showed a nose for business an d were pioneers among Hong Kong businesses in coming to Taiwan.

(Below) "Service" and "quality" are the two ways Hong Kong businesses hav e used to make places for themselves in Taiwan.

(Above) After the arrival of martial arts TV dramas, not only was there a "Hong Kong series fever," it gave the local television industry considerable stimulation. (photo courtesy of China Television advertising department)

(Below) Improvements in the level of Taiwan's jewellery industry are due in no small part to the arrival of Hong Kong "masters."

Hong Kong bullion dealers used the latest information and reasonable pric es as major assets in coming to Taiwan.

(Above) Cultural affinity and broad room for development are major facto rs in attracting Hongkongers to Taiwan.

(Below) The concept of futures now in Taiwan is almost entirely acquired from Hongkongers. (photo by Vincent Chang)

 

X 使用【台灣光華雜誌】APP!
更快速更方便!