Since the Open-Door Reforms of the Chinese market to foreign investment in the late 1970s, numerous Western firms have sought to enter and establish their presence as a market leader in their particular industry. Establishing a presence and generating growth in the emergent Chinese market has proven challenging for Western firms; operating effectively and efficiently in this ‘new’ market environment (characterised by significant psychographic, cultural, legal and political differences) has highlighted a number of significant research opportunities. One such opportunity has manifest in a call to develop a finer-grained understanding of the knowledge management processes required by Western hotel chains attempting to enter and establish their operations in China. This chapter presents an exploratory analysis of the knowledge management issues and processes experienced by the Marriott Group during its entry and growth in the Chinese hospitality industry. This analysis is based on a series of semi-structured interviews with senior managers present during Marriott’s entry into China. The chapter concludes with a discussion of the managerial and theoretical implications emanating therefrom.
Part of the book: Knowledge Management Strategies and Applications