An announcement on the website of the Dutch International Business Network (NIO) reveals interesting business developments in a relatively unknown industry in China. The message states that “Dalian Yinggeshi Botanical Garden is looking for a partner business for the further development of the Sino-Dutch Flower Exhibition” in the Chinese city of Dalian. Flower parks in China offer interesting business opportunities.
In recent years the number of flowers parks in China have increased significantly. The parks attract large numbers of Chinese tourists that like to visit to escape the bustle of the big city, for a leisurely stroll, to have a family picnic or to make happy family ‘selfies’. According to Renée Derks of the Netherlands Business Support Office (NBSO) in Dalian – she placed the announcement – “Dalian Yinggeshi Botanical Garden has the ambition to develop into one of the most beautiful flower parks in China.” She explains that the director of the park, Mr. Sun, in 2003 started the construction of the park. In April 2014, the park of 133 hectares and with more than 3,000 species of flowers and plants opened its doors to the public. Since then, more than 500,000 tourists have visited the park. From spring to autumn, one can find different types of flowers, most of which are imported from the Netherlands. The park currently employs 100 employees.
Offering new varieties
Derks: “The owner is constantly looking for new varieties of flowers and plants. He wants the park to set itself apart from other parks mainly by offering new varieties.” With the help of NBSO, the entrepreneur is keen on finding companies that are interested in a partnership that will build an attractive flower expo. This will require investment in money and expertise by a partner that specialises in floriculture and park design, preferably with experience in cooperation with Chinese partners and exports to China. “
New flower parks and expos
Dalian Yinggeshi Botanical Garden is not the only flower park that is interested in finding partners. This is one of many new flower parks and expos that have opened their doors in the past five years. Supported by funding from local governments and businesses, large flowers parks have been developed in Shanghai and Beijing, but also in cities such as Wuhan, Qingdao, Nanjing and Shenyang. Usually, the parks are located just outside the metropolitan area, but an exception is the Dafeng Holland Flower Park, that is situated in the rural north of Jiangsu Province. Besides several hectares of Dutch tulips this ambitious park offers its visitors Zaanse Schans houses, a farm, 15 mills and even a replica of a church in Alkmaar. At Chinese New Year this park attracted 100,000 park visitors a day and about 2 million throughout last year.
In search of nature
The parks are a popular destination for China’s middle class city dwellers, who have time and money to go places during the weekend. Some travel in their own car, many join full day bus tours. The ‘new local tourists’ are mainly in search of nature, a quality that most major cities lack. The large flowers parks offer many opportunities for Dutch entrepreneurs, especially growers and exports of flowers and plants. The vast majority of the bulbs are grown by Dutch companies, but also services such as park design and marketing are increasingly being outsourced to Dutch companies. For example, the Dutch company IGMPR, Flowers, Parks & More is involved in the development of various (Holland) parks. See the story on Club China about IGMPR.
The parks are primarily intended to attract tourists to the region. The business opportunities include souvenir shops, restaurants, garden centres, but also wedding related business, such as weddings, photo shoots and romantic nights. This way, flower parks in China offer ‘new business’ to creative entrepreneurs!
Interested in more information on Dalian Yinggeshi Botanical Garden? Contact NBSO Dalian, Chief Representative: Renée Derks. Deputy Representative: Yin Hang. Phone +86-411 3986 9998, e-mail: email@example.com For more information on the other large Chinese Flower Parks contact the Agriculture Bureau: email: firstname.lastname@example.org or call at: +86 10 8532 0260.