We get a number of hare-brained foreigners that have requested advice on the opening of some peculiar businesses. Here are a few businesses that we do not advise opening in Korea.
- Farming. Prohibited for foreigners and foreign companies. For example, the growing of rice and barley is prohibited for foreigners. The farmers don’t even want to be in this business. Stay away.
- Publishing & Broadcasting. Prohibited for foreigners to own 50% or more of a publishing company and totally prohibited in the case of radio & TV. The industry is, also, saturated and the few foreigners operating as a minority shareholder in the publishing industry have faced difficulties in recent years, because of fierce competition for advertisers.
- Raising Dogs for Consumption. I, actually, had a man call me about this one. Ignoring that this may be a prohibited business for foreigners, you will, likely, have a few protestors that will make it very difficult to do business. If you love to eat or watch others eat dogs, we suggest considering a planet that doesn’t have animal protection societies.
- Any Business that is in Direct Competition with the Big Boys. SHHH. Samsung. Enough said.
- Did I Mention not Competing with the Big Boys?
I was motivated to write this post by my friends over at China Law Blog. They wrote an article entitled: 4 Chinese Businesses to Avoid that was motivated by an article entitled: Keep Away from the Unicorns: 4 Chinese Businesses to Avoid.
Sean Hayes may be contacted at: SeanHayes@ipglegal.com.
Sean Hayes is co-chair of the Korea Practice Team at IPG Legal. He is the first non-Korean attorney to have worked for the Korean court system (Constitutional Court of Korea) and one of the first non-Koreans to be a regular member of a Korean law faculty. Sean is ranked, for Korea, as one of only two non-Korean lawyers as a Top Attorney by AsiaLaw.
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