Kiwi Chamber sponsor Nowak & Partner facilitates soft landing for Korean market entry
Elias Peterle, Representative Director, Nowak & Partner Korea
Entering international markets can be a daunting task – and the Korean market is no different. Finding the right partner to assist one’s endeavors in market entry is imperative and setting the right strategy and approach to succeed in a new market comes only through due diligence and receiving proper guidance and support to navigate the obstacles.
To get that level of support, one must look no further than Nowak & Partner, a firm which was established in 2009 and has been assisting companies from all over the world to succeed in a challenging Korean market – including well-known Kiwi firm Shott Beverages – which Nowak and Partner helped with market entry support, office hosting and executive search. From A to Z, they offer a range of services such as market research to more enhanced turnkey solutions which includes legal support, office search and set up and staff recruitment, while fielding all inquiries to ease clients’ minds.
Chatting with New Zealand Ambassador to Korea Philip Turner
“Over the years, Elias Peterle and the Nowak & Partner team have helped us to recruit several staff for our firm – all of whom ended up being long-term employees,” said Eric Thorpe, a Managing Partner of Edge Communications. “They also managed our office remodeling project a few years back providing layout and design, and construction service recommendations making our office a better environment to work. Their knowledge and professionalism across a range of services is what sets them apart.”
“At Nowak & Partner, the customer relationship is of utmost importance when working together clients,” mentioned Jeffrey Bohn, a Managing Partner of Edge Communications. “They are a get things done-style company with a strong emphasis on quality of service. I would recommend them without hesitation.”
Enjoying The Kiwi Chamber 2013 Year-end Grand Hui
A long-standing sponsor of The Kiwi Chamber, Nowak & Partner has been a stalwart supporter of all chamber events and have played an important role over the years in New Zealand business-related events.
“Nowak & Partner has been a strong supporter of all Kiwi Chamber activities over the years and Elias and his team have been regular participants at all our events,” noted Dr. Tony Garrett, Chairman of the Kiwi Chamber. “They have even gone the extra mile by providing market entry presentations to visiting Kiwi firms at our previous New Zealand Tech Roadshow event on the benefits and difficulties of the Korean market, and on what it takes to succeed.”
Participating in 2019 New Zealand-Korea Tech Roadshow
To get the full scoop on Nowak & Partner, the Kiwi Chamber – as part of its Inspire with Innovation Series – caught up with Elias Peterle, Representative Director, Nowak & Partner Korea to hear more about their business operations, Korean market entry and the secret to success.
Please tell us about the history and vision behind Nowak & Partner? When and why did you set up operations in Korea?
Nowak & Partner was setup 2009 by Mr. Joachim Nowak, and in his role as a foreign legal consultant working for Korean law firms, he has supported countless businesses with their legal needs. He also realized that support for market entry and operation of an entity in Korea was frequently needed. This was the starting point to establish Nowak & Partner to support foreign companies with non-legal support services. Mr. Nowak and I met in 2008 working in a customer-client relationship on a large construction project which had taken some unfortunate turns before our participation. From that time on, we had quite a productive relationship which lead me joining the company in 2012 as Representative Director (CEO).
Your offering is quite diversified with key focus areas in market entry, executive search and interim management. Please explain these services and what differentiates your firm from competitors?
Our services are very much aligned with the needs companies have when entering and in later operations in Korea. From very basic services like market research and background checks on companies, to more elevated services like turnkey setup – where we facilitate all tasks, including office search and setup, personnel recruitment, IT setup and interim management, Nowak & Partner offers a full range of services. For companies which are well established, we are a trusted partner for their recruitment needs and engage in troubleshooting beyond their daily business scope, which can be a specific project such as relocation, green field business extension or an M&A.
The Nowak & Partner team
Our core differentiator is that we don´t consider ourselves as “consultants” who like to tell others how to do the task better. We instead roll up our sleeves and give direct support. Along with the execution, we also provide the knowledge and guidance to be sustainable and independent afterward. Coupled with my 15 years of working experience in Korea and especially our strong team at Nowak & Partner, our clients benefit from our extensive experience with multinational companies across almost all industries in Korea.
How would you rate your brand awareness in market? What growth strategies do you have in place?
We are a boutique service provider at Nowak & Partner and don´t want to be in the spotlight. We value organic growth and train all our talent in-house. It may take time, but it ultimately provides sustainable results to our valued clients where quality of service is the essence.
Meeting a visiting delegate at the 2019 New-Zealand-Korea Tech Roadshow
How has the pandemic impacted your business and how do you see the Korean market for growth opportunities over the short and long term?
The pandemic hit hard on our market entry business and HR services as companies stopped their expansion and recruitment. Along with to the development of the pandemic the overall environment for manufacturing businesses has reached a point where I wonder if there is anyone who will benefit, or if it will turn into a lose-lose situation for all local participants and the winners will be abroad.
Personally, I expect that the pandemic will continue to have an impact for many years. Still, the most significant tasks are lying ahead of us, and with every challenge, there comes new opportunities.
As an expat businessman who has spent a lot of time in Korea, please tell us about yourself, and your roles prior to Nowak & Partner. What has changed since you first came here?
I think I could write a series of books about it. In a nutshell, I came to Korea in 2007 and worked for a German company in renewable energy which established a local joint venture. It was a young setup but with an experienced team where everybody was very passionate about success. Back then, very long working hours and social events as a kind of equalizer were very common. Korea was and is very dynamic, and a lot of changes happen continuously. The most significant change is in business agility. The business environment was much more agile before but has now slowly become more bureaucratic. People seem to be more concerned about protecting their position than sharing the mutual interest of the business parties. I believe that this is only a passing phase and Korea has great potential.
Why The Kiwi Chamber? As a long-time sponsor what connects you to the chamber?
Great people and great events – what more can I say! I feel generally connected to the region and love to support foreign businesses with their first steps in Korea, and with the limited resources The Kiwi Chamber operates with, the Chamber is doing a fantastic job.
Enjoying the 2016 New Zealand Wine Festival with family
We know you have a fun car. Please tell us about it and why you like it.
I discovered that the Renault Twizy in Korea received the same discount as other EV cars. Therefore, it was very affordable, especially since I bought it used. The Twizy is not a full-size car; it is more like a tricycle, but compared to scooters or motorbikes, it is not subject to weather, and you can jump in with a suit and without the need for a helmet.
I would describe it as ultimate driving machine for big cities like Seoul. It’s small, nimble, and fast. It has space for two adults and an environmental footprint of around 7 KW/h per 100km, which translates to less than 1L of gasoline for every 100km. It can be charged with any standard house plug and can be fully charged in about three and a half hours. The major point is that nobody usually drives in the city more than 60km a day, so charging is really no issue at all. People need to realize that suddenly there are plenty of places in Korea where EVs can plug in, so they should overcome their hesitation towards electric vehicles.
I will soon reach the 10,000km mark and have no desire to trade it for another car for city driving.
Nice ride! – The Twizy
Is there anything else you would like The Kiwi Chamber members to know about Nowak & Partner?
Please don´t be afraid of reaching out to us. We are always happy to listen to your needs and problems and seek practical and cost-effective solutions.