GORDON CHOW


 



Gordon Chow
currently serves as President of VTech Telecommunications Canada Ltd., where he is responsible for the Telecommunication Products Business in Canada, having established the Canadian operations, VTech Electronics Canada Ltd., in 1986. Prior to joining VTech, Mr. Chow had his own Management Consulting practice, and held management positions with a real estate development company and a Chartered Accountant firm. Mr. Chow holds a Bachelor of Commerce degree from the University of British Columbia and is a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of British Columbia and a member of the Board of Governors of Crofton House School in Vancouver. Mr. Chow has served as a member of the President's Advancement Council of the British Columbia Institute of Technology and a director of the BCIT Foundation. He was also a member of the Royal Roads University - MBA Advisory Board, and a director of the Canadian Toy Association.

PRESS                                                                                                                                                                   

HOLD THE PHONE: If VTech Telecommunications Canada Ltd. president Gordon Chow's profile were any lower, he wouldn't be able to see over his two-seater Maserati's dashboard. But the former Porsche owner likes it that way, even though he elevated himself for a rare public appearance in the receiving line at Oasis Hongkong Airlines' launch party.

Chow was there because the 100-employee, Richmond-based private company he has headed since its 1986 inception is the Canadian arm of Hong Kong-based, Bermuda-registered VTech Holdings Ltd. That firm's founder, chair and CEO, Allan Wong, is an investor in, and vice-chairman of, Oasis. As the airline's plans were being formulated in Hong Kong, Wong basically said of Chow: "He's over there [Canada]. Let him help."

Chow had to offer that aid quickly after receiving the file in February and seeing Oasis start flying this month -- a scant 60 days after receiving approval.

His duties entailed housing airline operations and two Discover The World Marketing staffers in VTech's office, launching a $500,000 advertising campaign, overseeing outsourced operations, and readying packages to pitch Whistler to Kong Kong residents and China's entire Pearl River Delta region to Canadians.

Chow likely relished the change of pace. A University of B.C. commerce graduate who worked at Deloitte & Touche "just long enough to get my C.A.," he entered the entrepreneurial crucible as the Narod development firm's finance manager in 1983, "when the market was going crazy and we were paying prime-plus-one, prime-plus-two for money -- and that meant 20 per cent. When interest rates finally came down, we ran out of cash."

Narod went into receivership, and Chow went into immigration work. That's how he met Wong and VTech co-founder Stephen Yeung, who invited him to launch Canadian operations for a firm that made electronic educational toys and training aids before adding cordless telephone systems. As for the Canadian firm's performance today, he'll say only that it parallels the parent corporation's.

Not a bad parallel. The 20,000-employee group's revenues increased by 21.5 per cent to US $1.46 billion in 2007, according to results announced June 20.

Shareholder-attributable profitability set a record, too, by growing 42 per cent to US $182.9 million, and dividends rose 150 per cent to 41 cents per share. Business Week magazine rated VTech 56th among global IT companies, and 10th in profitability.

A father of three girls, Chow is a Crofton House board member who sits on the executive of that private school's current $20-million capital campaign. That bag may be easier to fill than a 359-seat jumbo jet to and from Hong Kong six times weekly.   - 2007 MALCOLM PARRY for VANCOUVER SUN

Editor's Note:   Can you believe we have known Gord since days when the two of us were Teaching Assistants one summer to academics at the School of Business  at UBC?   He the assistant to  accounting professor and me as assistant to Anti-Combines specialist.     He is the proud parent of daughters with his wife Irene.

 


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