News / USA

Chinese Publisher Profits From Growth of Houston’s Asian Population

Chinese Publisher Profits From Growth of Houston’s Asian Populationi
X
Greg Flakus
September 03, 2014 10:19 PM
The rapid growth of the Asian population in and around Houston, Texas, has helped make the fourth largest city in the United States one of the country’s most diverse cities. Many Asians come to Houston to fill high-paying jobs in the city’s energy and medical sectors. But many also come to start businesses in a relatively inexpensive city. And, as VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Houston, the Asian influx has helped one Chinese immigrant build an empire.
Greg Flakus

The rapid growth of the Asian population in and around Houston, Texas, has helped make the fourth largest city in the United States one of the country’s most diverse cities. Many Asians come to Houston to fill high-paying jobs in the city’s energy and medical sectors. Many also come to start businesses, though, in a relatively inexpensive city. The Asian influx has helped one Chinese immigrant build an empire.

Chinese culture is now woven into Houston’s urban fabric. And young Chinese residents also are proud to be Texans.

One of them is China-born entrepreneur Wea Lee, who founded Southern News Group here 35 years ago.

“Our friends get together here and also celebrate the 35th anniversary of Southern News Group,” he said.

Starting small

Lee’s business success started with a printing press and a newspaper for what what was then a small Chinese community in Houston.

He now has huge, modern presses, and he publishes community papers in several languages in 10 U.S. cities.

“Every hour I can print 28,000 copies,” he said.

A growth rate of 70 percent in Houston’s Asian population since the year 2000 has fueled the expansion of Lee’s business. He now prints papers in several Asian languages.

Houston’s Asian population, at about 7 percent, is small compared to Whites and Hispanics -- each with more than 40 percent -- but Asians tend to be well educated and wealthier.

Lee said his publications have helped many immigrants prosper.

“A lot of people move to Houston, move to International district. We try to help them to make it their home and make successful their business,” said Lee.

Major success

He also has expanded into television and the Internet, providing entertainment and news for the Chinese community.

Since Chinese food is popular around the world, Houston channel ITV also has a cooking show. In cooperation with a TV station in Los Angeles, it provides all-day programming.

ITV also offers an Internet news program for China, where news announcer Tongyan Zhang said there is great interest in Houston.

“People living in China want to know if Houston is a good city for investment, is Houston a great city for them to come and find a job, to go to college,” said Zhang.

“How to get into high school, how to get into the best colleges in America -- that kind of topic interests a lot of the Chinese audience,” said Lee.

Aside from his media empire, Wea Lee’s company also owns the International Trade Center in Houston’s Chinatown, and he was a major partner in establishing a local bank.

“We really appreciate this great country that gave us opportunity. Where else can you start a banking business? Where else can you start a publishing business? Only happen in America,” said Lee.

Houston’s Asian population is growing 50 percent faster than more established hubs like New York or San Francisco, and Southern News Group will benefit from that growth in the years ahead.

You May Like

Philippines, Muslim Rebels Try to Salvage Peace Pact

Peace process faces major setback after botched military operation to find terrorists results in bloody gunbattle between government forces, Moro Islamic Liberation Front fighters More

Republicans Expect Long, Expensive Presidential Battle

Political strategist says eventual winner will be one who can put together strongest coalition of various conservative groups that make up Republican Party More

Video New Wheelchair Is Easier to Use, Increases Mobility

Engineers have come up with a lever-operated design that makes use of easily accessible bicycle technology More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Yoshi from: Sapporo
September 07, 2014 8:46 PM
I am happy as one of Asians hearing that many Asian people are getting together to America and have succeeded there. I agree the US is open to legal immigrants and Asian people, especially Chinese nationals are eager to take a chance to promote themselves.

But I am sure they can not forget their mother land. They would go back home some day and play some roles in prospering their folks with help of their own carrier gotten overseas.

By the away, how about as for Japan? It is reported that the number of Japanese students studying abroad is getting fewer year by year. Does it mean we Japanese have lost eagerness to learn from abroad or we Japanese think there is nothing to learn from abroad? Does it mean Japan is no longer a developing country?

When we are satisfied with present status, we must stop progressing in everything. I hope I can have a chance to go abroad and stay there for some years to experience foreign cultures although I am about 60 years old.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grievingi
X
Benno Muchler
March 26, 2015 3:41 PM
Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grieving

Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Cambodian Land Grabs Threaten Traditional Communities

Indigenous communities in Cambodia's Ratanakiri province say the government’s economic land concession policy is taking away their land and traditional way of life, making many fear that their identity will soon be lost. Local authorities, though, have denied this is the case. VOA's Say Mony went to investigate and filed this report, narrated by Colin Lovett.
Video

Video US, South Korea Conduct Joint Military Exercises

The Eighth U.S. Army Division and the Eighth Republic of Korea Mechanized Infantry Division put on a well orchestrated show of force for the media this week during their joint military training exercises in South Korea. VOA’s Seoul correspondent Brian Padden was there and reports the soldiers were well disciplined both in conducting a complex live fire exercise and in staying on message with the press.
Video

Video Space Program Status Disappoints 'Last Man on the Moon'

One of the films that drew big crowds last week at the annual South by Southwest festival in Austin, Texas, tells the story of the last human being to stand on the moon, U.S. astronaut Eugene Cernan. It has been 42 years since Cernan returned from the moon and he laments that no one else has gone there since. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Young Filmmakers Shine Spotlight on Giving Back

A group of student filmmakers from across the United States joined President Barack Obama at the White House this month for the second annual White House Student Film Festival. Fifteen short films were officially selected from more than 1,500 entries by students aged 6 through 18. The filmmakers and their families then joined the president and a group of celebrities for a screening of their films. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video VOA Exclusive: Interview with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, during his first visit as president to Washington, gave a one-on-one interview with VOA Afghan Service reporter Said Suleiman Ashna, about his request for a change in U.S. troop levels, the threat from the Islamic State, and repairing relations with the United States and Pakistan. The interview was held at Blair House, late Sunday, in Pashto.
Video

Video California Science Center Tells Story of Dead Sea Scrolls

The ancient manuscripts were uncovered in the mid-20th century, and they are still yielding clues about life and religious beliefs in ancient Israel. As VOA's Mike O'Sullivan reports, an exhibit in Los Angeles shows how modern science is bringing the history of these ancient documents to life.
Video

Video Angelina Jolie Takes Another Bold Step

Hollywood actress and filmmaker Angelina Jolie has revealed she had her ovaries and fallopian tubes removed to lower her odds of getting cancer. Doctors say the huge publicity over her decision will help raise awareness about the importance of cancer screening. VOA’s George Putic has more

All About America

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More