Guanxi May Not Be Enough

Despite his enviable connections, venture capitalist Peter Liu must tread cautiously in China

San Francisco-based venture capitalist Peter Liu calculates that since 1993, he has traveled to Beijing 64 times--and 107 times to Hong Kong. His mission: to develop the guanxi, or connections, with business and political leaders that his WI Harper Group Inc. would eventually need to fulfill his dream of pioneering U.S.-style venture capital in China. "It's very, very time-consuming," says Liu, who is about to make another mainland trip. "It's quite annoying if you don't have the patience."

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