Symbiosis | Sharing | Harmony

2013 Speakers

Greg Hundley


Greg Hundley BCom(Hons) University of Western Australia, MA, PhD University of Minnesota is Professor of Management, Krannert Associate Dean for Global Programs and Initiatives at Purdue University, and Director of Purdue's Center for International Business Education and Research (CIBER).

Topic: How Leadership, Innovation, Human Resource Management Sustain the Family-Owned Business

Family businesses frequently face specific challenges stemming from lack of scale and scarcity of talent that can provide diverse inputs and new ideas for sustained innovation, to assure sustainable business success in today's rapidly changing markets. We explore how long-term success can be assured by paying attention to how family businesses can gain from the application of insights in three areas of management thought and practice: (1) innovation (2) human resources, and (3) leadership.

Dr Lee Oi Kum


Dr Lee Oi Kum, eldest daughter of the founder of the Malaysian family business group "Taiko", Tan Sri Lee Loy Seng. Assets of the Taiko Group include two listed vehicles on the Kuala Lumpur stock exchange. Group activities range from palm oil plantation cultivation, property development and palm oleo - chemicals production to chemicals and fertiliser manufacture.

Alex Ng, eldest son of Dr Lee. Alex has been based in China since 2006. As China General Manager for the Taiko Group, he is responsible for risk management and structuring of agri-commodity trade flows between China and Southeast Asia.

Topic: Exploring Generational Change

Generational change in family businesses is a highly complex process and often constitutes a balancing act for everyone involved --- family, company and owner. Resolving issues is both emotionally led as well as practical: alongside fiscal, legal and financial questions are the very personal aims and values of the family members and, in particular, the views and ambitions of the next generation of family business owners.

Alex Bluestein


Alex Bluestein is part of the 5th generation to work within Oscar Winski Company, Inc. He lives in West Lafayette, Indiana with his wife, Candace and two sons, Oliver and Dylan. Alex earned a degree in Management from Indiana University in 1999. He moved to Chicago and pursued a career in Internet Marketing with the then startup company, Performics Inc. After five years with Performics, Alex joined the family business that included his father Michael, uncle Steve and older siblings Marla and David.

Topic: Family Ties - How Oscar Winski Reached the Century Mark and Beyond 

The 100-plus year-old company is named after its illustrious founder, Oscar Winski. From infancy to its fifth generation, the company has always been on the go, making the most of local as well as international opportunities. While the second World War propelled significant growth of Oscar Winski's recycling business, future generations have ventured into steel processing, value-added fabrication services, warehouse logistics and electronic recycling as the basis for future expansion.

Throughout the company's history, it has continually adapted to market-changing circumstances as well as refined the corporate culture. Family businesses have their own unique considerations in addition to the normal day-to-day challenges of business, such as: Are we honest with our employees and ourselves? How do we separate personal and professional? What is the right balance between the needs of the company and the needs of the owners?

Fei-Peng Ho


Fei-Peng Ho is a well-known publisher in Chinese world. Ho has co-founded Cité Publishing Group, PChome Publishing Group, Business Weekly Magazine, Manager Today and Golf Magazine, etc.. In addition, he has established over 20 publishing houses and over 30 magazines.

Topic: Analysis of Different Ways of Succession in Taiwanese Family-owned Businesses 

As the Chinese saying goes: "Keeping a business going is harder than starting a business." Institutionalization of family entrepreneurship in China is a fairly recent development. Today, a number of the family businesses which have contributed significantly to the development of post-modernization China are facing a critical succession problem. This is what we are here to explore and explore, [Geraldine – should there be another word here instead of “explore”?] how to ensure the sustainable survival of a family business.

In Taiwan, for a family business to further develop, it must break out of the dual “bottleneck” of “professionalism” and “standardization”. A sustainable family business must be able to attract and absorb a large number of professionals to the core of its management rank.

Dr. Paul S.C. Hsu


Dr. Paul S.C. Hsu is chairman of Taiwan Institute of Directors. He received his Ph. D degree in Business Administration from the University of Michigan in 1974. He is also the first one who had earned a MBA degree from the same university and thus, one of the pioneers in management education in Taiwan. He had taught many universities in Taiwan and abroad, including as the founding dean of two business schools in Taiwan, National Taiwan University and Chan Gung University.

Topic: Chinese Businesses Succession Planning 

Family entrepreneurship within the context of Chinese culture is steeped in historical heritage and rich in cultural substance. But, the influence of western management culture has brought about changes requiring clear answers to the differentiation between family and enterprise, both in the organizational structure as well as management system. Family entrepreneurs began to bring forward the training of their respective successors, and attract non-family members to join the ranks of top management. The curse of “Wealth does not last beyond three generations” must be broken. It is hoped that Chinese family entrepreneurs will plan their succession with an open heart and a visionary outlook so as to ensure the sustainability of their businesses.

Dr. Liping A. Cai

cai-lipingDr. Liping A. Cai is Professor and Director of Purdue Tourism and Hospitality Research Center and Associate Dean of the College of Health and Human Sciences at Purdue University. Professor Cai also directs Purdue University China Center. He is a governor-appointee to the Tourism Council of the State of Indiana and current Emerging Leadership Fellow of American Council on Education.

Xiaoxiao Fu is a Ph.D. candidate and research assistant at Purdue Tourism and Hospitality Research Center. She received her Bachelor of Liberal Arts from Beijing University and Master of Science from Johns Hopkins University. Ms. Fu’s research portfolio consists of both demand and supply sides in tourism and hospitality.

Topic: The Characteristics and Success Factors of Family Businesses in Tourism 

The sustainability of family businesses has emerged as a major concern, both for the founding entrepreneurs at the micro-level and the communities large or small at the macro level. Such concern is in particular acute in China where and when the first-generation of family business owners are reluctantly searching for successors to carry their torch in a variety of economic sectors. In the tourism system, the increasing access to rural and remote destinations has inspired a new crop of family business starters to capitalize on the growth opportunities. The notion of sustainability may not be on the top of their immediate priorities. This speech draws on the discoveries and case studies reported in over 40 academic articles.

Dr Rumintha WickramaSekera

RuminthaWDr Rumintha WickramaSekera is the Coordinator one of the largest international business programs in Australia with more than 2000 students enrolled per year - Global Business at the Queensland University of Technology (QUT) Business School. His research is focused on identifying the dynamics of the internationalization process of small to medium sized enterprises, including his PhD research, which examined the internationalization of the Australian wine industry. Recently he has expanded his research to examine factors behind the longevity of family firms in Australia.


Topic: Long–lived family firms within the Australian wine industry

In countries such as Australia and New Zealand, the average life span of a person is around 80 years. In contrast the life span of a firm is much shorter - around 40 years. For many small to medium sized enterprises, mortality comes within the first decade. During the global financial crisis, the rate of failure increased even further. However, there are firms that go on to prosper and thrive for centuries despite being plagued by a multitude of crises. The oldest company in the world, Kongo Gumi Construction, is one such company that has survived for over 1400 years.