Runckel & Associates

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Our company's homepage: www.business-in-Asia.com


Our Asia Consulting Services

On the Ground Support

Creating a company in Asia

Building and Operating Plant in Asia

Site Selection, Logistics, Licenses

Sourcing Products

Business Information Collection

Visit Facilitation

Organize seminars and events overseas

Investment Service: Feasibility Analysis
Market Intelligence

Product Information Research

Recommendations on Options for Sales

Due Diligence, Merger and Acquisition

Information and Asset Protection

Legal Consultation

E-Commerce and Website Promotions


Assisting Executive MBA Programs and Business Groups


Our Team


We have experienced English-speaking associates on the ground in China, Vietnam, Thailand, Cambodia, Laos and other countries in the region


In the News


Our company and principals on:

The Forbes Magazine | CBS News |
Vietnam Economic Times | Wire Journal | The Oregonian | The Business Journal | China Daily | Selling Power | The Entrepreneur Magazine | The Purchasing Magazine | The Inbound Logistics | Portland Monthly | and more...




We have experienced English-speaking associates on the ground in China, Vietnam, Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, Philippines and other countries in the region.  Most of these associates have been working with us for 6-10 years during which they have performed a wide variety of projects with us.  This gives you and your company experience, knowledge, a trusted partner and an advantage helping you in all aspects of your new endeavor in Asia.

  Christopher W. Runckel, President and Principal of Runckel & Associates. Mr. Christopher W. Runckel, President and Principal of Runckel & Associates. Mr. Runckel has had a long association over his career with Asia. He worked in President Ford’s White House as Deputy General Counsel of the Presidential Clemency Board, which recommended clemency for Vietnam era draft deserters and evaders. In 1994, he was assigned to Hanoi as the first permanently assigned U.S. diplomat since the Vietnam War. In 1997, Mr. Runckel was recognized for the breadth of his contribution to U.S. - Vietnam relations by being awarded the U.S. Distinguished Honor Award, the highest U.S. Award for diplomatic service. In addition Mr. Runckel has served in foreign assignments in Hong Kong, Fiji, Thailand (two tours), London and in China. Mr. Runckel continues to advise Federal, State and Local government on a wide range of issues. He is a specialist in foreign trip planning and has served the last seven U.S. Presidents in this capacity. He is an advisor to the Shanghai Discovery Children’s Museum. He also is Honorary Chairman of the U.S. Vietnam Business Council and an active speaker on Asian and business subjects to community, State and National groups plus works with many Universities and Colleges. Mr. Runckel works extensively on projects all over Asia.  His languages include Vietnamese, Thai, Chinese (Mandarin), French, German and Spanish. 

  Soraya Runckel, co-founder and Vice President. Born in Thailand and a graduate of the prestigious Chulalongkorn University in foreign languages and with a Master's degree in Technology in Education, Mrs. Runckel is noted for her language skills and computer expertise. Before co-founding Runckel & Associates in 1999, Ms. Runckel operated her own computer consulting and training business in America, Europe, and in Asia. In addition to other duties, Mrs. Runckel heads the IT department of Runckel & Associates and creates successful websites, including Runckel & Associates' www.business-in-asia.com and www.asia-art.net, plus those for many other organizations and corporations. Mrs. Runckel taught and has been involved in international education for almost 20 years.   She possesses unique experience and insights in cross-cultural education particularly with Asia.   She is also an accomplished artist and has exhibited her work around the world. Mrs. Runckel is fluent in Mandarin, Thai, Vietnamese and several other languages and continues her lifelong passion for Chinese brush painting as well as other Asian art projects.

  Dr. Charles Runckel, Chief Technology Officer. Dr. Charles Runckel received his BA in Genetics from Dartmouth College before earning a doctorate in Molecular Biology (PhD) at the University of California, San Francisco under Dr. Joseph DeRisi, with a focus on cutting edge biotechnologies including deep sequencing and synthetic biology. Prior to his work at Runckel & Associates and NPEC, Dr. Runckel served as Director of Research at Delphi Health Services, Ltd, a Bangkok, Thailand-based human genetic testing firm where he registered Thailand's first human genetics patent. As Chief Technology Officer, Dr. Runckel brings a background of state-of-the-art technologies to enhance our company's portfolio of biogas and biofuels projects, with a particular interest in flexible designs that will allow retooling of various facilities as new biofuels technologies mature.

  John Muller, Consulting Business and Security Expert, Southeast Asia. John Muller has a lifetime of work and experience in Southeast Asia. A Political Science graduate of the University of Washington and a Seattle native, Mr. Muller has headed major U.S. and local companies in the airfreight, airline and helicopter services, security and other fields in Thailand, Cambodia and other Asian locations. Mr. Muller’s involvement with security first started in 1969 in the U.S. Army in Vietnam and then continued on with a private investigator firm in Seattle before he returned again with U.S. government security from 1975-77. Mr. Muller then worked for such famous names as Flying Tigers, Evergreen International Airlines, Circle Freight International and several security firms in Thailand where he headed up operations.
Mr. Muller is a world renowned expert in VIP protection, security, business in Southeast Asia and is often consulted on due-diligence and other business-security issues. Mr. Muller has numerous commendations from the U.S. Embassy, U.S. Department of State, the FBI, Thai, Cambodian and other nation’s police on his work throughout the years in the region. He is Chairman of the Security Committee of the American Chamber of Commerce of Thailand and the Overseas Security Council of Thailand respectively, a Member of the American Society for Industrial Security, the International Bodyguard Association and the US Special Forces Association. He is also an Honorary Member of the Royal Thai Special Forces.

  Tina Zhang, Senior China Associate. Ms. Zhang heads Runckel & Associates operations in Shanghai, China and has had a relationship with our company for many years. Coming from a background in consumer products design, manufacture, quality control, sales and marketing, Ms. Zhang has gained deep understanding of what it takes to do business in China today. She daily puts her skills and expertise to work for clients in outsourcing, OEM, market focus studies and many other facets of our work for clients. She is particularly knowledgable in the plastics and consumer sales industry and maintains a wide range of contacts throughout China. These have been extremely helpful to Runckel and Associates in projects as diverse as business plan development and research, factory and office site selection, factory and office lease, recruitment, trip planning and facilitation for both small and large groups plus many other activities. Ms. Zhang is China based but has travelled extensively to the U.S., Europe, Japan and throughout Asia in support of her past work.

  Dang The Truyen, Senior Vietnamese Associate, Hanoi. Dang The Truyen is Runckel & Associates and www.business-in-asia.com ‘s exclusive representative in Hanoi, Vietnam. Truyen has had extensive experience in senior national government, international organization and commercial business. He was a former Senior Assistant to the Prime Minister; worked with the UNDP in early studies looking at restructuring Vietnam’s Economy; served as Permanent Member of the Board of Management of Vietnam Airlines: served as a member of the Prime Minister’s Research Commission plus has served as a researcher and a consultant on many educational, business, developmental and cultural studies for European and other bodies. Mr. Truyen is also a highly successful business entrepreneur with experience in management of companies involved in the foreign investment consulting, travel and tourism industry. He helped to set up the very first American Consulting Firm – VATICO in Vietnam in 1992. He served as consultant to the World Bank in Washing ton D.C, Directors of two Technical Assistant projects for Vietnam funded by Swedish DIDA and Canadian CIDA. Currently he provides consultancy to various World Bank, Asian Development Bank projects in Vietnam, Mr. Truyen’s present positions include Head of Section for Political and Social Studies of Western Europe of the Institute for European Studies of the Vietnamese Academy of Social Sciences plus Advisor to the Prime Minister’s Research Commission, specializing in national economic performance, business regulations and institution building. Academically Mr. Truyen’s accomplishments are equally impressive including a Ph.D. in Economics from the Institute of Economics, Vietnam Academy of Social Sciences, Hanoi and a Master in Public Administration (MPA) from the Kennedy School of Government Harvard University, and a BA from the Australian National University.

  Nguyen Thi Nhu, Senior Vietnamese Associate, HCMC  Nguyen Thi Nhu was Runckel & Associates and www.business-in-asia.com 's first international associate. She has worked with Runckel & Associates for over ten years.  Ms. Ngyen is active in assisting foreign Universities and other groups in environmental, educational and other development projects throughout the country. Ruby has traveled extensively to the U.S., Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore and many other countries. Ruby speaks and writes fluent English.

  Nguyen Cao Van, Vietnamese Associate, HCMC  Van has worked extensively in the travel and tourism sector and is known for his excellent English and his wide and ranging knowledge of Vietnam and its culture, history and geography.  Van has worked extensively with many cruise lines in Vietnam and is routinely sought out as an interpreter, travel guide and general resource for many VIP and other visits to Vietnam.  In addition to the above, Van also has extensive sourcing experience and is well experienced in finding suppliers and recommending Vietnamese companies for key projects.  With a BA in English and Tourism Management from the Ho Chi Minh City University of Foreign Languages, Van both writes and speaks in excellent English.  He brings these skills to his work for Runckel & Associates which has won accolades from many of our clients. Van also owns and runs his successful travel company, Vietnam Alive Travel (www.vietnamalive.com).

  Bui Truong Minh, Vietnamese Associate, HCMC   Minh took the course program of IT at CITD, Vietnam from 1999-2002. During this time, he also worked as a freelance technician to set up and design LAN networks for home and small companies. In 2005, he obtained the CCNA certificate of Cisco Academy then got a scholarship to work for CISCO Vietnam as an Intern for 5 months. During this time, he also studied some modules of CCNP.  From Nov. 2005 to 2008, he worked for Hong Co Ltd. Co as a Presale and Sales Assistant for 2 years, then as Sales and Deputy Manager in the Project Department for the next 3 years. He also worked as Product Manager of Fujitsu’s branch for 2 years.  In 2008-2009, he worked for BKT Ltd. Co. as a Sales Manager then worked for Amigo-Tech (southern branch) Company as a Technical Leader and Presale Engineer in the Service Department in 2009. During this time, he did many projects to set up networking systems (including to provide IT equipment) for some organizations such as Thai Nguyen University, Can Tho University, Prudential Vietnam, Sacombank, Saigonbank, RMIT University and many International schools.  Minh has worked for some of Ho Chi Minh City's largest IT companies.  He is very experienced in the IT field and also has worked in sourcing and other work that involves non-IT related functions.  He has travelled extensively in the South and has both initiative and focus in completing all his work for our clients.

  Alfredo Ramos, Senior Representative for the Philippines.  Mr. Ramos heads Runckel & Associates operations in the Philippines and is based in Manila.  Mr. Ramos has a Master of Business Administration degree for the University of Santo Tomas in the Philippines and has done advanced studies in Chicago, Illinois, USA.  Mr. Ramos is a retired Philippine military officer with over 20 years of service in which he rose to the rank of Lt. Colonel.  Mr. Ramos has worked for many large Philippine corporations holding the position of Vice President plus earlier Manager of Human Resources and is helping Runckel & Associates to better market the Philippines as a site for investment and doing business.  

  Kundan Singh Bajetha, Associate in New Delhi, India is a self-motivated and innovative business professional with extensive experience in working in both a range of leading Indian firms plus with firms involved in China.  Kundan pursued basic Chinese language from Bharti Vidhya Bhawan Jawaharlal Nehru Academy of languages for 06 months and then further extended this exposure with a one year intensive Advanced diploma in Chinese language from Delhi University in 2004-05 followed with work in Shenyang, China before returning to New Delhi and working to help support numerous Chinese business and other delegations.  Kundan has traveled and worked extensively through India and is an expert in supporting the requirements of both Senior Level visitors and large business delegations.

  Sothy Phan, Senior Representative for Cambodia, Phnom Penh. Mr. Phan heads Runckel & Associates operations in Phnom Penh, Cambodia and has worked with our company on projects in Cambodia for nearly five years. During this time Mr. Phan has worked on projects involving agriculture, economic development, humanitarian demining plus many other business related studies and due diligence projects. He also serves as Advisor to the President of the National Assembly of the Kingdom of Cambodia and also as Executive Director of the Assiaance to Demining Service (TADS). Additionally he is Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Cambodian Researchers for Development (a Cambodian Non Governmental Organization - NGO). Mr. Phan's languages include Cambodian, English and French and he has travelled to both the U.S. and Europe for previous projects.

  Sihattha RASPHONE, Co-Senior Representative for Laos, Vientiane. Sihattha and his brother Xanbandith head Runckel & Associates’ team based in Vientiane, Laos where they are the Exclusive Representatives of R&A. Sihattha is the first Lao to graduate from the prestigious School of Electronics in Tokyo and further obtained his Master degree in Information Systems from the Japan Advanced Institute of Science and Technology, Hokuriku, Ishikawa Prefecture of Japan. Sihattha and R&A currently are marketing to others the opportunities in the following business fields in Laos such as: Savan-SENO Special Economic Zone, international business consulting, tourism and travel, agriculture business development, energy and mining, investment promotion, trading, sourcing and other mutual business projects. 
Shattha is has been a Correspondent for the Japan External Trade Organization in Laos (JETRO) since 2000, and he serves as the first stop for Japanese investment into Laos. He has assisted and coordinated the establishment of garment, shoe and hats and sewing factories and the first ever Korean Hotel Restaurant in Laos ‘COSMO’. Due to both his experience and his range of connections, Sihattha is a key counselor to all interested in developing business in Laos. He is a member of the Lao Chamber for Commerce and Industry and in 1999 Sihattha linked Vientiane City with Ishikawa Prefecture of Japan to be partners and Sinter or Partner cities in development and peace. Sihattha is active in community activities such as assisting the Central Lao Buddhist Fellowship Organization (CLBFO) to mobilize external assistance and fund raising for school building, renovation of temples and education for the poor. Sihattha has traveled and lived extensively throughout the world including Japan, Korea, China, Southeast Asia, European and Scandinavian countries, Germany, Belgium and the U.S. He speaks fluent Japanese and working English.

  Dr. Xaybandith RASPHONE, Co-Senior LAO Associate, Vientiane. Dr. Xaybandith has lived extensively overseas including 6 years in the Ukraine and eight years in North America mostly in Canada. He obtained a B.Sc./M.Sc. in Computer Science from the Ukraine in 1990. Later he added an M.Sc in “Informatique de Gestion” from the Université du Québec Montréal and then his Ph.D. in Management of Information Systems from Concordia University in 2000. As a former member of the Science, Technology and Environment Agency (STEA) under the Prime Minister Office in Laos, Dr. Xaybandith has analyzed, designed and developed management software as well as provided technical support and assisted the needs of government organizations undertaking information management and computer implementation. His main responsibilities while in Canada were in presenting specific technology cases, performing market surveys, preparing feasibility studies, elaboration of work documents on a prospective opinion about technology evolution (including the electronic superhighway) as well as the impacts and needs of city government in information technology and telephony infrastructure. He has conducted advertising campaigns of products, design and developed search engines for queuing activities, management software for sale and services, quotation and inventory system used for software & hardware availability search engines inside company, integrated newly introduced internet/intranet with the present local area network and many others activities. Xaybandith has served as Vice-President and consecutively President/CEO of Champa Lao Development Consulting Co., Ltd. (CLDC) based in Vientiane, Laos since the beginning of 2000. Most of CLDC works deal with the sector of trade, investment, marketing, project development and management, agricultural and industrial development, information technology, accountancy, insurance, eco-tourism, services and other industries. The company serves as a "Think Tank" by bringing together highly specialized and skilled personnel in a local Consultancy Organization supported by the Government of Lao PDR and funded by private organizations. Xaybandith is also Managing Director/Owner of Champa Lao Garment Manufacturing Co., Ltd. an apparel manufacturing company specialized in producing sportswear, pants, shorts and women items for export mainly to the EU. He is also the Secretary General of the Association of the Lao Garment Industry (ALGI) and a member of the Lao National Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LNCCI). Xaybandith is fluent in English, French, Russian and Thai.

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