The key to translation

Malcolm Duff

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Translation the Key to Gaining and Keeping Foreign Market Share

International publishers began to establish their presence in China in the late 1990s

According to an article published in the China Daily on 28 August 2012, translated books have become an important segment of the Chinese publishing industry.

Realizing the huge market potential, international publishers began to establish their presence in China in the late 1990s.

McGraw-Hill Education has been working in partnership with more than 100 Chinese publishers since establishing its Beijing office in 1999. Penguin Books set up their offices in Beijing, Shanghai and Jiangmen in Guangdong province, in 2005. Other instances in the publishing world include Cambridge University Press.

These examples illustrate the extent to which translation is the key to accessing any foreign market, from first contacts by letter or through interpreters at international meetings, to draft agreements and contracts, and finally sales literature and user manuals.

Not only is translated sales literature a mandatory requirement in many countries in order to market goods, it also has obvious commercial benefits for the end user.

As these market moves have been made, the cost of translating sales literature has considerably decreased over the last decade, dropping by as much as 50% in some language combinations as professional translators come onto emerging markets, and easier access to their services becomes possible via the Internet.

Translation companies have reacted by expanding their services to include more language combinations, better software to include and harmonize the customers' terminology and further decrease costs, and, in some cases, apply quality control procedures so that their products and services are as inexpensive as the local offer but of better quality - the two best sales arguments anywhere.

For companies in developed nations faced with recession partially caused by lower prices driven down by competitors from the emerging and developing countries, the solution lies in translation, and in using global translation services to open the doors to foreign markets.

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Malcolm Duff is the CEO of HTT (, an ISO 9001-certified translation company located in Rouen, France, which I founded in 1987.

In 2004, HTT designed and developed Inttranews™ (, which is now the leading news service for the translation industry worldwide, with readers in 140 countries. Inttranews is also syndicated by more than 400 websites, including that of the International Federation of Translators (

In 2009, HTT designed and developed Inttrastats ( a wesbite providig real-time data on the translation and interpretation industry.

In 2010, HTT designed and developed Inttracom (, a global network of translation companies with ISO 9001 or equivalent certification.

In 2011, HTT designed and developed Kontax (, a multilingual press release site in 64 languages managed by ISO 9001-certified translation companines with offices in 165 countries.