Our history stretched back in the 1980s when we first started providing technology internationalisation and marketing services to multinational and local firms. Our first products were South Asian language adaptation kits for PCs.
Paddyfield was established in 1999 as the first Hong Kong based electronic bookseller and one of Hong Kong’s first e-commerce operations of any kind. The next year, it established the School Bookclub programme: regular catalogues of the best of recently-published children’s books distributed in partnership with a great many Hong Kong primary and secondary schools. An entire generation of Hong Kong schoolchildren grew up with the Paddyfield catalogue as a regular school event.
Paddyfield was also approached to help back the nascent Hong Kong International Literary Festival, which ran out of Paddyfield’s offices until 2007. Paddyfield itself established and ran the student side of the Festival, which soon grew in attendance to more than 10,000 annually. Paddyfield also brought in other leading authors throughout the school year, cooperating both with schools and organizations such as the British Council.
The Man Asian Literary Prize, which grew out of the Festival, was chaired by Peter Gordon through 2008 and, again, run from Paddyfield. Soon after, the Hong Kong Trade Development Council asked Paddyfield for assistance in developing an international visiting authors programme for the annual Book Forum. One result of this effort was the hugely popular Forums run by Sir David Tang.
Technology, consulting and international relations
Paddyfield grew of an international technology and business consulting operation founded in 1988. This included technology and technology business consulting to local firms and multinationals, a series of ventures in Russia and the former USSR for and with the Russian Academy Sciences, various agencies of the Hong Kong, Russian, Kazakh and Cyprus governments, leading banks and corporations, as well as JVs in technology transfer and chip design and production.