Doing business with China seminar 2022

  • 18 January 2022

This is a prime opportunity for those who may be considering "Doing Business With China".  A great lineup of speakers at this year's seminar which will be held at Trafalgar Centre Northern End on Thursday 29 September 2022, 1pm-4.30pm.

You will hear from experts in their field and also local companies speaking on their experiences including:

  • Jo Coughlan – Managing Director, Silvereye Communications
  • Franky Wang – Head of Asia Business Activation, Bank of New Zealand
  • Ethan Jones – Senior Advisor (Business), Asia New Zealand Foundation
  • Frank Witowski – Owner Hybrid Bikes Ltd
  • Dr Luca De Leonardis – Head for Australia and New Zealand at Invest Hong Kong (InvestHK)

To register please email

China Week Business Seminar Speaker Bios

Jo Coughlan – Managing Director, Silvereye Communications

Jo Coughlan is the managing director of Silvereye Communications. She has some 20 years of experience in senior public relations and communications roles including Press Secretary for the former Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister the Rt Hon Don McKinnon, helping him become Commonwealth Secretary-General in 1999.

In 2008, Jo co-founded Silvereye Communications and has subsequently worked with a wide range of public and private sector clients across diverse industries. Silvereye has a specialty in cross-cultural communications, helping Chinese and Indian companies in particular succeed in New Zealand.

Jo has held senior governance roles having served nine years as a Wellington City Councillor – six of those as Chair of the Economic portfolio. She was Chairperson of Wellington City Life Education Trust, a Board member of Positively Wellington Tourism, and a National Board member and Deputy Chair of Life Education Trust New Zealand. In 2018 she joined the Board of the New Zealand Amateur Sports Association and was appointed an Independent Director of Dairy NZ Ltd.

Franky Wang – Head of Asia Business Activation, Bank of New Zealand

Franky Wang is a strong banking professional at Bank of New Zealand with a demonstrated track record of working in the Commercial, Corporate and Institutional Banking segments across different locations in China, Australia and New Zealand.

He has managed several portfolios of influential customers over the past many years with multiple banks in New Zealand dealing directly with Asia, particularly China, from both capital inflow and trade outflow perspectives connecting offshore investors into Aotearoa. The industry expertise of his includes, Artificial Intelligence, Aviation Services, Commercialized Bottled Water Export, Dairy, E-Commerce, Education, FinTech, Forestry, Hospitality, Healthcare, Meat, Professionals and Retailing sectors. Franky holds a Bachelor of Business Studies majoring in Finance and Economics from Massey University in Palmerston North, a Bachelor of Business Studies majoring in Finance (Honours) and a Master of Finance degree from Massey University in Auckland.

Ethan Jones – Senior Advisor (Business), Asia New Zealand Foundation

Ethan first moved to China at the start of 2015 to take up a Mandarin language scholarship before moving to Shanghai for a sales role with Anheauser-Busch Inbev or ABI - the global beer company behind brands such as Budweiser, Stella Artois and Hoegaarden. He helped develop their craft beer presence in Shanghai - which at the time represented around 1/3rd of China's craft beer market.

He moved back to New Zealand mid-2019 with his partner and started a company focused on supporting regional New Zealand - in particular Northland - to better engage with International Chinese Tourism. Ethan has also worked as a freelance Mandarin-English translator and made appearances on Chinese TV and key social media channels. He now works at the Asia New Zealand Foundation - Te Whītau Tūhono as Senior Adviser in the business programme, working to support NZ business engagement with the wider Asia region. 

Frank Witowski – Owner Hybrid Bikes Ltd

Frank is a German born hard working, very driven entrepreneur who likes to take on challenges in life and business and take them to the next level. He has a proven track record of success and passion, extensive management and marketing experience in both B2B and B2C environments. He is a strategic thinker who uses his diverse experience to develop innovative solutions and strategies. He’s a qualified Engineer and has many years of Engineering & Manufacturing experience in Germany and New Zealand from Structural, Mechanical, Factory automation and Boat building.

He designs Carbon Fibre E Bikes here in New Zealand for New Zealand, Australia and rest of the Global market. His frames have twice the strength of alloy frames and sell at the mid range price point in the E Bike market. Hybrid Bikes received the highest rating of New Zealand E Bike brand at Consumer Magazine.

Frank is also Global Business Development Consultant to Changzhou Hejia Solar Energy Co.Ltd.

Frank also operates NZ China Trade Consultants Ltd with offices in Nelson and Changzhou in China.

He has considerable experience working with businesses in China in many different products and fields.

Dr Luca De Leonardis – Head for Australia and New Zealand at Invest Hong Kong (InvestHK)
The Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region

Dr Luca De Leonardis is the Head for Australia and New Zealand at Invest Hong Kong (InvestHK), the Government Department responsible for attracting and facilitating foreign direct investment into Hong Kong.

With senior management experience in both the private and public sectors, Dr De Leonardis’s work experience combines international marketing, economic and business development and investment promotion.

Prior to joining InvestHK, Dr De Leonardis spent five years as Deputy CEO of the Italian Chamber of Commerce in Australia. He also worked in New Zealand, Canada and South Africa for private companies and trade organizations and in Brisbane as Adjunct Senior Lecturer at Griffith University.

Dr De Leonardis holds a Ph.D. In Economics, a Master in Management & Strategy and a Master in International Trade from Bologna University and two advanced diplomas in Business and Management and Economics.


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