Entering Malaysia in a big way

PETALING JAYA, Aug 12 (Bernama) – Qi Group, the Hong Kong-based global e-commerce company headed by entrepreneur Datuk Vijay Eswaran, is eyeing strategically-located properties in Malaysia in the leisure, hospitality and health-related industries including setting up affordable specialist hospitals in what is seen as a homecoming for the self-made multi-millionaire.

This, together with the group’s purchase of a RM60 million building in Section 8 here as its regional headquarters and ambitious plans for the Endau-Rompin resort, marks its commitment and entry into Malaysia in a big way.

The regional headquarters here would consolidate its operations in Indonesia, Singapore, Thailand, the Philippines, he told Bernama in an interview today.

Vijay, who has carved out a name for himself among renowned Hong Kong financial circles more than a decade ago, said as a conglomerate with a global reach, the group will continue to look for choice properties in Thailand, Mauritius, Maldives and Kenya besides Malaysia to expand its leisure and hospitality businesses.

Nevertheless, the current focus is on moving to Malaysia in a big way and building up a track record with financial institutions.

“We could have purchased the HQ building outright ourselves from our funds. But we went through the process of getting 60 per cent financing to build up our financial credibility and rapport locally,” he said.

Starting out in 1998 as an e-commerce outfit, the Qi Group has grown into a multinational conglomerate with six key businesses — telecommunications, lifestyle and leisure, luxury and collectibles, training and conference management, property development, and a global retail and direct sales business — with subsidiaries in 30 countries.

Vijay said the group’s continuing and increased presence in Malaysia was also underpinned by a firm belief in the country’s economic potential and the need to build up its local persona.

A massive venture Qi is undertaking in Malaysia is the Endau-Rompin resort project in Pahang covering 200 acres (about 80 hectares) at a development cost of US$250 million.

Grand plans are in store for the resort over the long-term which will showcase a marina, mixed development, villas, a boutique hotel, as well as cultural and heritage centre when it is operational in five years’ time, he said.

It was purchased for US$28.1 million (RM70 million) initially.

The group is also setting up five private specialist hospitals in the next three years with an investment of RM18-RM20 million each providing affordable medical services in various fields such as surgery, dermatology, emergency operations, general clinic, etc.

But the catch here is that affordability would come about from the hospitals being located outside urban centers such as Banting for which land has already been acquired.

The four-storey hospital with 40-60 beds is expected to be fully operational is two years’ time. Other potential sites for such hospitals include Kluang and Kuantan.

He said: “We are banking on the affordability of medical tourism in Malaysia which is a powerful incentive to lure tourists as Malaysia is a lot cheaper than Singapore. It fits into our tourism strategy.”

Vijay also revealed that the company was working with the Pahang government to rebuild Istana Pekan, which was a classic palace, built without a single nail or cement being used, and sitting on the premises of the royal palace grounds.

“Malaysia is not playing up our culture and heritage as much as we should like Bali and Thailand (and) more so with the distinctly different culture between Pahang, Terengganu and Kelantan and the west coast,” said Vijay.

Vijay, who hails from Terengganu, is passionate about spicing up the state’s culture and heritage with classical east coast Malay architecture which would offer tourists from all over the world a secondary story and not just the usual sun, sea and sand.

Once the resort is operational in five years’ time which he describes as more of a labour of love, the group also has plans to develop the legendary lake of Tasik Chini, which would add on to the 100 million-year old Endau-Rompin heritage forest area.

“We are going to preserve the mangrove swamp and backwaters on our property and build cabins on stilts so that we can preserve the ecological balance of the project,” he said.

Asked on the returns from these investments, he said what was going to be profitable was the resort itself which can be patronised by the group’s captive tourist market from its Vacation Club which has six million customers worldwide in its database.

Already, the diversified company is bringing in a whole bunch of tourists worldwide to Malaysia, Thailand, Bali and the Middle East.

To tap into that potential, the group was on the lookout for an urban hotel in Kuala Lumpur which can be a stopover for them to spend a couple of days for shopping and thereon choose to hop on to Endau-Rompin and Tasik Chini for a feel of culture.

To this end, he said the group was negotiating with two hotels, “but we may not acquire both. One is right down in Jalan Sultan Ismail in KL and another in PJ, which is stone’s throw away from Amcorp Mall” which houses Qi’s current operations.

“We are also eyeing resort properties in Mauritius, Kenya for safaris, and an island in the Maldives to add to our expansion plans,” he said.

In Thailand’s island paradise of Koh Samui where it owns the Prana Resort, he said the group was already building its second upscale hotel along the island’s Boh Put beach.

The groundbreaking for the second resort in Koh Samui is set for this month.

Vijay also revealed that the group “definitely has its eyes open for properties in Sabah and Sarawak, probably an island off Sandakan as well as in Balik Pulau in Penang.”

As to whether there would be a cap to this process (of acquiring properties), he said there was none as it’s a matter of “finding the right location and acquiring properties to meet our needs.”

When asked on the funding needs against a backdrop of such ambitious plans and acquisitions, he lamented that “it has been both our boon and bane.”

Elaborating, he said that never needing to seek external funding was a boon as funding from within the group makes life easier as everything was internal.

But it was a bane because “we have never been able to build up strong financial relations with banks as a result of which they don’t know who we are.”

That is why “we are changing our strategy to negotiate with banks for loans and hire purchase agreements rather than traditionally buying outright,” he said.

“The PJ headquarters has given us a good base as far as our credit worthiness is concerned,” said Vijay.

The company’s employees have started moving into their new headquarters in PJ8 here. It would initially house its financial, administrative, information technology and backroom audit operations to be followed by other external functions.

They include graphic works in Thailand, copyrighting (Philippines), call centres (split between Philippines and Malaysia), legal as well as travel and vacations (Singapore).

“Department by department is being consolidated because we are pretty far and quite widespread and our staff here of over 400 people now from a mere 80 five years ago will support our global operations,” he said, clearly reaffirming that Qi is in Malaysia for the long haul.

Malaysian link to F1 contender

PETALING JAYA, Feb 11: QNet, which has been involved in motorsport through its sponsorship of teams in the Formula BMW, Formula V6 and the GP2 Asia series, has now moved into the more prestigious Formula One.

This is a natural progression, ensuring exposure for QNet on a global stage in one of the world’s most prestigious sporting arenas, through its global partnership with the Marussia Virgin Racing team.

In November last year, Malaysian entrepreneur Dato’ Vijay Eswaran, the executive chairman of the QI Group of Companies, of which QNet is a flagship subsidiary, and Sir Richard Branson of the Virgin Group announced a long-term partnership between Virgin and QNet.

Since 1998, QNet has been one of the foremost pioneers of the direct-selling industry throughout Asia, distributing an innovative range of lifestyle products to millions of customers around the world through its cutting-edge e-commerce platform.

In its second decade, the company is fast-emerging as a global direct-selling brand with major operations in Hong Kong, Malaysia and Singapore, and a worldwide presence in almost 30 different countries through representative offices and agency partnerships.

In addition to its strong portfolio of exclusive wellness brands – including nutrition, energy, personal care, home care and other lifestyle product categories – QNet also offers a proven business opportunity to promote the company’s products, representing the potential for an entrepreneurial business venture through network marketing.

QNet is driven by the mission of ‘Raise Yourself To Help Mankind’ (RYTHM). This philosophy is embodied within the QI Group of Companies and its widespread educational, environmental, cultural, and disaster relief philanthropic initiatives, which are enabled by its corporate social responsibility arm, the RYTHM Foundation.

Marussia Virgin Racing made its debut as Virgin Racing in the 2010 Formula One season with Branson’s Virgin Group as the title sponsor of the team.

On Nov 11, 2010, it was announced that Marussia Motors, a Russian sports car manufacturer had taken a controlling stake in the team, thus the name change to Marussia Virgin Racing from 2011 onwards.

The team will compete under a Russian racing license, becoming the second Russian team in the sport after Midland (which later became known as Force India).

The team’s new car, which is the world’s first to be designed entirely on computers and without the use of a wind tunnel, represents a big step up from the 2010 challenger and is expected to provide a better edge for drivers Timo Glock and Jerome D’Ambrosio to earn honours during the 20 races scheduled in 2011.

The QNet logo will be prominent on the front wing and rear wing endplate of the newly unveiled MVR-02 race car. It will also be positioned on the overalls of the drivers, mechanics and team members.

The QNet brand will also be prominently displayed in Marussia Virgin Racing’s garage, transporters, motorhome, and Paddock Club suite among others.

As part of the sponsorship deal, the drivers and Sir Richard Branson will also be available at selected QNet events worldwide.

For further information please contact K.P. Waran at 013-3311670, or write to kpwaran@human-equation.com.

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Joseph bismark has a positive approach towards things

The founder of the highly successful QNET, a MLM company, Joseph Bismark has helped the company to progress and reach dizzying heights of success by opening various branches in over 22 countries across the globe. He is a leader all his subordinates love to have because he is dynamic, competent and a complete man in the true sense. His key to success is team spirit and nothing else. He believes that every individual has a lot of hidden potential in them and if this is explored they will have the capability to achieve everything and make the impossible also seem highly possible.

He believes that team work with the right spirit is the only things which can help the group succeed as a whole. He gives equal credit to each and every member of the group, however big or small their work and work profile is and says that he is only as good as any other team mate of his.

Joseph Bismark has set a standard of sorts for many as he advocates the growth of all those who work with him and around him and does not simply aim at self progress. He has put in a lot of hard work and his efforts have paid off as QNET is one of the most successful companies today. He has ensured that his employees too rise to their fullest potential by boosting their morale and encouraging them to strive hard and give their best shot.

Joseph Bismark believes that materialistic possessions are not what help you grow as an individual. You also need to nurture your spiritual side well to have a holistic approach towards different situations you face in life. This has made him a man of substance and has earned him tremendous amount of respect from family members and loved ones.

He has an optimistic approach towards life and always sees the glass half full. He inspires a number of people who idolize him and reveals the journey of his life in his book gems of wisdom. A large number of people have taken inspiration from this and have tried to model their life on similar lines. He writes a blog also with the same name and inspires those who wish to grow like him.

Hackers not Behind Website Attack, Says QNet

 

QNet has confirmed that its e-commerce portal was recently the target of a Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attack. This caused its main website to be offline for over 36 hours.

 

Petaling Jaya, Malaysia (Vocus/PRWEB) March 23, 2011

QNet has confirmed that its e-commerce portal was recently the target of a Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attack. This caused its main website to be offline for over 36 hours.

QI Group IT Director, TG Kintanar said, “As a global direct selling company with a busy trading portal, it is not unusual for QNet to become a target for such attacks, although this has never happened before.” QNet is a subsidiary of the QI Group of Companies.

 

“Let me stress that the cyber-attack on our website was not the work of hackers. The DDoS merely blocked customers’ access to our services, causing them great inconvenience. However, as QNet’s online security measures were in place, our customer database remained intact throughout the attack. Nothing was compromised.” Kintanar said.

 

He added that upon noticing the attack on March 9, the QNet IT team immediately started working round-the-clock to set up an alternate transactional website so that its customers could continue their business without interruption.

 

“We deliberately kept our website offline for some time as the volume of these attacks increased substantially and we worked to mitigate them. Hours after the initial attacks began, we were able to restore full functionality to http://www.qnet.net though we restricted access to it.

“Taking a leaf from this experience, we are working with cyber-security experts to further strengthen our systems, ward off future attacks and return to business-as-usual much faster,”

Kintanar stressed.

 

In 2009, Facebook confirmed that it too had become a victim of DDoS. However, no user data was at risk and they too restored full access to the site within hours.

A year earlier, in 2008, the CNN News website twice faced a DDoS attack. CNN fixed the attacks by limiting the number of users that could access the site from specific geographical areas.