Always stay true to yourself- Meeting Jian Xu
First sight meeting with Jian Xu, his affinity and humor personality have melted my pressure and nervousness. Jian Xu is not same as those businessmen that make people feel distant; he is friendly and easily approachable just like a friend that he is very willing to share his business experiences to people.
Mentioning to Jian Xu, almost every Californian Asian might know Tournament of Roses Parade every January 1st in Pasadena. Since 2014, Singpoli has been the only Asian company sponsored this parade, which is the third largest parade in the U.S. that has successfully brought Singpoli’s name widely known by people and become the mainstream of the industry. Singpoli’s creativity of floats, such as “Flying horse”, “Fire bird”, and “Monkey king” have won the awards every year. Especially the “Lucky dragon” in 2016 combined Eastern and Western cultural harmoniously that made Singpoli win the highest award Grand Slam, which has not only opened the horizon for those American people but also raised the positive image of Asian nations in the society.
Mr. Egg: Hello Mr. Xu, hearing Singpoli company originally was a construction company, and from the start until today, your company has achieved investment legendary continuously. Can you share your experiences in this journey with us that what’s key elements helped you succeed?
Jian Xu: My father used to have a construction company in Hong Kong and mainland China, and his company has involved in many landmark buildings from conference center to hotel projects. I came to the United States in 1986 and graduate from college in 1991. No matter the experience from my father’s business or my study career has given me a stable foundation to start up my own business.
Mr. Egg: But why you transferred construction industry to real estate development industry?
Jian Xu: Based on the foundation from my father, I was thinking to expand my industry areas that I want to do not only a construction company but also a real estate development too. During the economic crisis in 1992, there were many real estate properties had been underestimated. Fortunately, Singpoli caught the timing and made the acquisition on those low-priced land, and then replan and construct it to raise its value. Finally, our effort indeed got us a high payback.
Mr. Egg: Have you keep developing in the United States only?
Jian Xu: I went to China during 2002 to 2003 because I thought it would have a larger real estate market over there. Therefore, I was traveling between China and the United States to do some investment from 2002 to 2006. But I moved my business’s core back to the United State in 2007 because I found the economic in America was in recession that created a best timing for my company to expand more in real estate industry.
Mr. Egg: What do you think is the most important thing for real estate investment?
Jian Xu: The timing you make acquisition is really important. Although a good sight is important too, if you get the wrong timing buy in that it still has a hard time to develop. Secondly, your strategy is important too. For instance, our company has a Hotel Constance project in Pasadena city, which used to be a senior apartment project. However, we found more opportunities on those young entrepreneurs and businessman group, so that we decided to change our target. Although the appearance of the building is vintage and old-school, our strategy kept its historical outlook in same but applied the modern and current technique into its interior design, such as every room has assigned an iPad or you can download its artificial intelligent app on your phone too, which allows every customer can enjoy customized service through this program that will attract those young generation to know our hotels and we did have achieved 80% reservation. The investment on every project is really depending on how you create its value to follow the current trending. Also, the finishing period and trying to satisfy customers’ needs is one of the elements to make sure the success of your project too.
Mr. Egg: What do you think is the key to run well such a big company continuously?
Jian Xu: Team work, stay passion, and following the trend. In Singpoli, we have a wide industry of business, including hotel, catering, media, finance, real estate, etc. Every industry is somehow related, so that it needs strong team cooperation in the current period. In the following era, the Internet will be the most important elements to play in business. Therefore, a successful company must have a sensitive sight to observe the trending.
Mr. Egg: There are too many companies no matter big or small coming to develop their business in the United States. If they want to get in the trending society, what is your tips and advice for them?
Jian Xu: The best way to blending into American society is to get into American community. For instance, our Singpoli company is positively interacting with Pasadena Community College, California Institute of Technology, and other community educational or unprofit organizations. In the United States, their culture emphasizes on interaction between industry and community. Remembering to pay back to the society when you earn benefit from it can make this process permanently. Of course, understanding the local culture is also a key to enter the mainstream too.
Mr. Egg: Being the first Asian company sponsored Tournament of Roses Parade, what is your reflection about it?
Jian Xu: Learning to pay back where you earn from. After Singpoli built up a good relationship between Pasadena Community College, California Institute of Technology, and other communities, committee has approved our ability and refer our company to participate Tournament of Roses Parade, and we have won the Extraordinary Award by “Flying horse” float. When you really pay effort by your all hearts, the committee invited us again in the second year. Our “Marco Polo, Eastern and Western interaction- Fire bird” float in 2015 won Protocol Officer Award, and “Lucky dragon” float in 2016 won the biggest award Grand Slam. Furthermore, “Monkey king- the way to success” float has been reported by two big page layout in Los Angeles Times.
Mr. Egg’s note: Tournament of Roses Parade is hiring volunteers every December. If you are interested in this event, please feel free to sign up on its official website!
Mr. Egg: Can you briefly describe your company’s new project the Cableway Park in West Covina?
Jian Xu: It’s glad that the municipal committee of West Covina invite us to participate in this project. They used to plan this field to become a golf course. However, this field is not allowed to use in a business or residential purpose. Considering this restriction and other reasons such as lacking water in California and there are already several golf courses around this area, we came up a plan to make this field become a cableway park, and the government approved our suggestion very quickly.
Mr. Egg: It’s really exciting to see when it’s done, can you tell us what facility will it have?
Jian Xu: We divide this part into several sections. It will have outdoor activities park, interior VR experience area which is visual game such as ski and boating, extreme sports area, and hotel and dining area.
Mr. Egg: Everyone knows you are not only a successful businessman but also your children are outstanding to. How do you balance your busy business and your family time?
Jian Xu: I think family and career are both in parts of business. Only a harmonious family can make my career even better. During the weekend, it’s my family time. I’ll keep accompany with my parents, my wife, and my children. No matter how busy is my work, those day are left for them only. Therefore, I think time management is important, and I’m continuing keep it in my mind. For instance, I’m losing weight recently that I plan my schedule to do it at home. These way can not only save the time traveling between gem and my home but also can make time to see my family more often, and I really made it to lose 2 inches on waist now!