Taiwan's Bland Choices

It is interesting to see that Taiwan has so many businesses opening and closing before a clock strikes twelve.

Everywhere I go, there seems to be the same business on a repeating cycle down the street: Drink shop, cafe, small restaurant, clothing store, sales property office, hair salon… What the hairball is going on here? Do these people not think outside the box to improve every day life with some other decision making??? Foreigners do the same here as well…cafes, restaurants, and bars.

I know everything is about the market demand, but if these businesses are not successful, then why open a new one under a different name, or create a new store next to the other 10 stores that are selling the same things?

This makes me question the passion and development of Taiwan. Are many people here too lazy to think outside the box? Are they mostly skilled in one area which inhibits growth in other areas? Are they afraid of failure? Are they just trying impress people with status? Do they just want to not work for other people? Something is just not seasoned well here in Taiwan.

Maybe I see things differently, but I wonder how much Taiwan can do if this country sets limits to establishments being made and demands documentations about what are the owners’ intentions on how to benefit society. If a block could see a dojo next to an after school daycare next to a buxiban next to a skill learning center next to a park next to a dancing studio next to vet office next to a import/export store, etc., people could develop differently as a society and a nation. The way we use applications is how we think the app works which gives us a norm, so the same applies to economic growth and diversity.

What’s my point? Why have not the Taiwanese changed to improve the economy? What are your thoughts?

There’s a thing here where similar shops tend to cohabit the same streets or areas, it looks a bit strange at first but it seems to work for the retailers and restaurants to attract the crowds.

Taiwans urban environment is very dense so it could be that it can support more stores of a similar nature , most of the shops and cafes are very small and relatively low overhead.

I agree if you go to any town in Taiwan they tend to have the same (local) chains stores , often clustered together, so many towns look and feel very similar. Maybe it’s a feature of consolidation in the retail industry and brand recognition.

If you think there’s a lack of choice now should have come years ago when there were no coffee shops and only McDonald’s and a few places for western food, there’s tonnes and tonnes of food choices but of course Asian cuisine predominates.

As for opening of more variety of business models well yes there is always a lot of copy catting , due to the faddish ways of Taiwanese it can make sense to jump on the latest trend when it is hot. The profit horizon is shorter and the business cycle very quick here.

As for your example of the ideal block above, I know plenty of areas that have a similar mix , places like gongguan, Xindian, tianmu, shilin, Zhongshan, panchiao…not sure what’s the problem there.

Hey thank you for the insight.

That way madness lies. You really want self-important fuckwits in quasi-governmental organisations deciding how businessmen should be allowed to invest their money? There are countries that do stuff like that. India springs to mind. I agree it would be nice if the government would encourage socially-useful enterprises (like Gogoro), but there are other ways that might be done.

Yes, it’s wasteful to have mediocre businesses endlessly starting up and shutting down, but hey, that’s capitalism. At least it keeps the interior decorators in employment.

Depending on the area, I would add, there’s a somewhat high chance of shops just being a hobby to the owner. Once boredom sets in, they get rid of it and they cycle begins anew.

I am down for limitations , so that way other people have opportunities in creating new businesses which means new skills for employees and a new market for consumers and a steady income for the owners. My post is only to see how Taiwan is viewed by others and themselves. @M.Ando that’s one of my points…no passion. In this case, confusing )

My experience with Taiwan is completely the opposite actually. I’m always amazed at how many convenient businesses there are all around us. I’ve lived in about a dozen different cities in the last couple decades and Taiwan is definitely number one as far as diversity of businesses that you see right next to each other. Sure they fail quite often, but is that any different than where you’re from? I think the standard 50% of small businesses fail number probably applies pretty much around the world.

I remember writing an article on my blog years ago about the convenience of Taiwan. The gist of the article was illustrating what is available for easy living within a 5 minute walk in any direction of my apartment.

There were schools, a hospital, the MRT station, several grocery stores, video stores, hair salon, a million restaurants of all types, a couple pubs, a few auto repair shops, my gym and yoga studio, a traditional street market, a night market, tennis and basketball courts, office buildings, blah blah blah. I could go on and on. Literally everything a person could ever need within a 5 minute walk of my apartment.

And it’s not like it was anywhere particularly special in Taiwan. It was at the corner of Roosevelt and Heping at Guting MRT station. There’s a million places in Taiwan just like it. Businesses of all types everywhere around us.

I was born and raised in a fairly densely populated area of Calgary and there literally wasn’t a single business within 5 minutes walk. You had to drive 5 minutes just to hit the first 7-11.

Set up your own shop to make the shops diverse?

I wonder how many out of the box ideas the op has realised himself? Let me guess? Zero… :notworthy: