The Hong Kong & China Gas Company Ltd.: Negotiating Joint Ventures in China

Case Solution

James K. Sebenius, Michael Shih-ta Chen, Medha Samant
Harvard Business School ()

To conduct 56 large new Chinese joint ventures a year, Hong Kong China Gas executives began to learn cross-border negotiation lessons from its 80 existing Chinese joint ventures. President Alfred Chan and CEO Peter Wong knew that HKGC’s growth strategy required significant continental expansion by negotiating joint ventures to operate gas and water distribution systems in various urban and rural areas of mainland China, often against strong local interests that could block power. Discussions with the negotiation teams at HKGC showed an increasingly sophisticated approach to negotiation, from identifying objectives and assigning parties to “social mapping” and guanxi development to creative contract design and tactics for address issues of justice, management control, territory and exclusivity. .

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