Wall Street English is coming soon to Bandung (according to various job ads and Facebook pages). It will be located in the new extension of Paris Von Java Mall, Kota Kembang’s most upmarket mall. At the same time they have been expanding into “second tier” Chinese cities. Having already conquered Shanghai, Beijing, Guangzhou, Tsingtao, Nanjing and Tianjin, they are now making a concerted push into new markets. One of these cities is Foshan, a city of 3.6 million people about an hour outside of Guangzhou. They have also arrived in industrial Wuxi and lovely Suzhou, famed for its UNESCO-listed classical gardens. (At the bottom is a photo from one of their raft of new schools in the Middle Kingdom). The company has several branches in many of the larger Chinese cities and is now moving to conquer the lesser cities (which in China may still have many millions of inhabitants). They are methodically establishing themselves as a major player in the world’s second biggest economy, setting themselves up for the future.
Wall Street has demonstrated the ability for impressive expansion that TBI can only dream of. In fact, judging from their utter indolence in recent years, perhaps TBI can’t even bother to dream any more. One can only wonder how long it will take before they are utterly eclipsed by WSI when they arrive on TBI’s home turf of Bandung. Outgunned and outclassed at every turn, TBI is now set to lose the top end of the Indonesian market to Wall Street. The moral of the lesson is that there is more to being a market leader than writing fake positive reviews on Dave’s ESL Cafe and bribing a few officials at Immigration. But commonsense is wasted on TBI management and they are condemned to face a slow, steady loss of market share and be slowly eclipsed on their home ground.