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Jonathan Bell, President of Jeffrey Manufacturing, Inc.

Let me tell you a story about a guy named Howard. Howard Wu to be specific. My name is Jonathan Bell, and I am the president of Jeffrey Manufacturing Inc., located in south Florida. Our company builds machinery and also produces metal products. Like all manufacturers, we are constantly looking for less expensive raw materials to produce out products without sacrificing quality. I began to do some research on China using the computer. Through various search engines, I was able to find many aluminum suppliers. They had names like Sally, Lucy and the like. They also had phone numbers half-a-mile long, and I had to get up in the middle of the night in order to speak to them. When I talked to them, some of them spoke English, but when you were dealing with technical matters the communication must be perfect. Culturally, I had no idea who I was dealing with or how to deal with them. Also, having never done business with Chinese partners, I had many apprehensions about just sending someone named Sally a very large check and hoping for the best.

Even if I had somehow found the perfect manufacturer to produce my material, I would then be faced with how to ship the product across borders. Which shipping line? What are all those shipping terms? What do they mean? We had to find some way to answer the many questions I possessed. I knew there were many agents who would bring in products for you, but I felt that I wanted more.

Finally, quite by accident, I was introduced to Howard Wu through a common friend. We had several telephone conversations and hit it off right away. Less than a couple of weeks after our initial meeting, I found myself on a plane with Howard, headed for China. On the ride over, he gave me an in-depth understanding of the Chinese people and the methods of importing. Howard knew all the in's and out's of shipping procedures, since he actually worked in that industry at the beginning of his career. It was a total and complete education. I felt like I had just attended the Harvard Business School on international trade. Howard is one of the most organized and detailed-minded people I have ever met. He insists on everything being done correctly, and that also fits my viewpoint on business practices.

When we arrived in China, the manufacturer that picked us up at the airport took us to lunch and then to their factory. Howard has had years of experience of negotiating at the factory level. He imported as many as 600 containers a year in with various products in them. At any rate, when we finished with one manufacturer, another would pick us up and take us to his factory. This all occurred on what seem to be effortless on Howard’s part. The last manufacturer of the day would take us to a very nice hotel. At times, another manufacturer would be waiting for us at the hotel to show us his product. This same process when on for two weeks, with very little time that wasn't business-oriented. We even ate lunch with mayors of cities with a population of more than 10 million people. We did the equivalent of driving from Maine to Florida in the United States and flew four different times to get situated in different parts of the country. We stopped in to visit with Howard’s very nice family and were treated with warm hospitality. We saw so many factories and I saw so much of China. Meanwhile, Howard and I formed a very good business relationship and are also now personal friends.

I would wholeheartedly recommend Howard and his company to import your products. Howard is honest and very trustworthy, while my product came in without a hitch and with no surprises. You won't go wrong, trust me.
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