We’re in Beijing, on our way to meet Mike Chambers. He’s the PR guy for DMG, a global entertainment and media company with offices in Beijing, Los Angeles and Shanghai.
As we’re about to step out of the elevator, we find Mike waiting for us. “Don’t move,” he says as he gets in with us and presses the button for the top floor, “we’re heading up to the roof. Show you the view of Beijing from above,” he adds with a smile.
“Well I was working as a PR director for a technology company in Silicon Valley when I had a life-changing experience… I met my wife,” says Mike with a smile. “My future wife I should say.”
“She had spent some years in China, fell in love with the place and the culture, and was determined to go back. So I thought about what to do…”
“Pack your bags and go to China with her, right?” says Anouk.
“Right! First to Singapore where I worked for Microsoft and my wife for Dell. After some years, we decided to start or own PR agency. In Beijing this time. That’s where I came across DMG Entertainment.”
“Tell us more about DMG,” I say.
“What I like about the company is the East-West understanding. It was founded in the 1990s by three visionaries, initially as an advertising agency. Then in the late 2000s they started to distribute foreign movies in the Chinese market and also producing and co-producing both Chinese and foreign movies.”
“Cool!” says Anouk. “What kind of movies?”
“Let’s see,” says Mike. “The Founding of a Republic in 2009, that was a Chinese film. And then they co-produced foreign films like Looper in 2012 and Iron Man 3 this year.”
“Wow, huge movies then!” I say.
“Yeah, pretty big productions,” says Mike. “What’s interesting as well is that DMG’s involvement in Looper meant that we were able to distribute the movie in China from the time of the international premiere. That was a real change, because usually there’s a ‘blackout period’ before foreign movies can be screened in China.”
“So that means DMG is really changing the film market here in China?” I ask.
“In a way, yes,” says Mike. “The Chinese regulators did not grant Looper co-production status, but because of DMG’s involvement, it was allowed to distribute the movie as if it were a Chinese production.”
Mike looks out over the Beijing skyline. “So you guys are travelling the world to meet people and brands?” Mike asks.
“That’s right: ‘People with a vision’ and ‘Brands with a purpose’,” I say.
“And for this trip we also have a sub theme,” says Anouk. “Women. Women who shape the Next World order. We met Salma Hayek in L.A., Indra Nooyi in Mumbai…”
“That’s great,” says Mike. “Then you should really meet Wu Bing, one of DMG’s founders. I think she’ll meet your criteria: she’s a woman, she’s a visionary and she is definitely shaping the NextWorld.”
“Sounds great!” says Anouk.