Up until ten years ago, medical devices in China were mainly distributed via large government-owned establishments. Nowadays, there are more than 12,000 private medical distributors in China. Although the Chinese medical device market is rapidly expanding, the distributor search process can be quite complex and risky.
Pacific Bridge Medical can guide you through this process and help you identify the most effective and trustworthy medical device distributors for your medical device product in China.
Common Issues Related to Medical Distributor Search in China
- Private Distributor Market Size: Despite the huge increase in Chinese medical device distributors over the last decade, the number of honest and well-funded private medical device distributors is still relatively small. There are also very few existing private medical device distributors who can provide national coverage.
- Product Replication: Replicating another manufacturer’s medical device is a common and rampant practice in China. Non-patented devices are especially prone to this risk. Strong knowledge of the market and due diligence during the distributor search will help prevent your device from being replicated.
- Unqualified and Untrustworthy Distributors: Numerous local Chinese distributors are interested in Western manufactured medical devices; however, not all distributors are necessarily qualified or trustworthy.
- Business Priorities: Does the potential medical distributor in China understand critical business ideas such as “conflict of interest”? Do they share the same business philosophies as you? We ensure that these essential questions are answered to assist you in your China distributor search process.
- Country Size: Due to China’s large size and fragmented markets, multiple distributors may be required to sell your medical products to different regions of the country. A good Chinese distributor in one province or region may not have any contacts or market presence in another region. Because many Chinese distributors operate on a provincial basis, Western medical device companies often need to partner with multiple Chinese distributors in order to obtain national coverage.
- Relationships (guan xi): Relationships are the key to doing business in China. Our local connections in China can lead you to the top medical device distributor candidates. Perhaps most importantly, we can help you build a relationship with a distributor from the ground up so that it becomes a reliable and long-lasting partnership.
- Language: Can you speak the distributor’s local language or are their English abilities sufficient to communicate? The form of Mandarin Chinese spoken in each region in China can have local colloquialisms that may be a source for some miscommunication. Our local office in China has the experienced personnel to aptly carry out these medical distributor negotiations.
PBM’s Key Steps to Finding Effective Medical Device Distributors in China
- Step 1: Conduct research via our office in Shanghai to locate, qualify, and select a number of prospective medical device distributors.
- Step 2: Clearly educate potential distributors on the functionality, unique attributes, market opportunities, and competitive landscape of the device.
- Step 3: Prospective distributors will be required to submit sales proposals, which include their marketing/promotional strategy, revenue projection, etc.
- Step 4: Upon conducting an in-depth analysis of the submitted proposals, we will select the most exceptional distributors and assist you with the contract negotiation and finalization process. In addition, we can manage your Chinese distributors from our local Shanghai office.
Asia Sales Program Option for Small Medical Device Manufacturers
PBM understands that small medical device manufacturers may be hesitant about distribution expansion in China due to limited time and resources. Our Asia Sales Program is customized to assist smaller medical device companies maximize their sales in China on a sales commission basis. Small medical device companies with at least $10 million in global sales may qualify for this program based on their products, so contact us now to discuss your eligibility.
Asia Sales Program Advantages
- We provide the above services on a sales commission basis.
We are paid only when your company receives purchase orders from our Chinese distributors. There will be no upfront expenses to our clients for this Asia Sales Program. PBM will not collect additional fees for assisting you with the registration of your medical device in China.
- We will develop and support the distributor-training program.
We will help train your Chinese distributors to successfully sell your medical devices in China.
- On the ground distributor management in China.
We will manage and motivate your Chinese distributors from our China office via quarterly visits, phone calls, and emails. In addition, we will conduct visits to distributor exhibit booths at appropriate trade shows and attend some of the distributors’ meetings with key doctors.
Pacific Bridge Medical has been finding and managing the best Chinese medical distributors for almost 30 years. Whether you need product distribution in Beijing, Shanghai, or anywhere else across China, our consultants can find the reliable and effective medical device distributors.
Contact us today for a free consultation with our China distributor search experts.
Need more information?
Visit our Resource Center to view free webcasts and charts or read publications, news, and research reports on the Asia medical markets.