Intelligence connects the dots


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As a unique partnership of specialist consultancies, we give our clients a competitive edge in the complex market environments of Asia Pacific.

The Consortium offers holistic, 360° consultancy to brands and services targeting Asia’s premium and affluent consumer. Each member sits at the helm of an established firm, recognised within its specialist field for delivering clients a clear advantage in the world’s most diverse and dynamic region.

Here, where consumption is strong, retail channels and environments complex and where brand differentiation is crucial, The Consortium offers its clients an unparalleled opportunity to harness complimentary expert perspectives. Whilst definitions and trends invariably shift, China – with its burgeoning middle class and vast spending power – still remains a key focus for any brand competing in the lifestyle and luxury sectors. Our members companies’ are each focussed on engaging this key demographic, in a region with the world’s highest concentration of high-net-worth individuals.

In a harsher and more challenging economic environment brands need, more than ever, to stand out and to be relevant. Consumers are now more mature, demanding and discriminating. Brands now need to act and adapt quickly – and to understand their consumer, to remain desirable and to better penetrate the market.

We are here to share our experiences with you…

Our Offering - The Consortium


An unprecedented means for brands
to harness thought leadership.

The Consortium’s working model allows our clients to capitalise on each specialist company’s knowledge and experience at once. Having understood the brand strategy and activity to date, we focus only the most appropriate resource on creating a bespoke, needs-based roadmap for your brand.

As leaders of successful, independent and highly specialised consultancies, The Consortium’s members are able to quickly add value by offering prompt access to an expert think tank. Clients benefit immediately by leveraging the experience of each partner via a fully converged offering, conserving valuable time and resource that might otherwise be spent exploring a range of suitable suppliers.

Agency groups often claim diverse capabilities when, in reality, they may be more proficient in one channel or discipline and often outsource. By contrast, The Consortium provides a fully synchronised, holistic service; our members’ collective expertise is focussed to give clients a clear advantage in optimising market opportunities across the region.

Our Partners - THe Consortium


• Commercial & retail advisory and market analysis
• Brand and communication planning
• Business intelligence for brands seeking to grow across regional geographies
Francis Gouten - Founding Partner
Francis Gouten
Founding Partner

Based in Hong Kong for more than 25 years, Francis has a special relationship with Asia and an unparalleled understanding of its complex luxury market, having led several of the worlds’ most prestigious high-end brands.

He specializes in strategic positioning for brands looking to invest or develop their businesses in the rapidly evolving markets of Asia Pacific, with particular focus on Greater China.

Francis’ career in began in the 70s; a key member of the team who took Cartier from owning a handful of boutiques to the international luxury marque we know today.

His tenure within Richemont took in notable remits at regional and global levels, including CEO of Piaget International, prior to his appointment as CEO of Richemont Asia Pacific in 2000.

Through his firm Gouten Consulting, established in 2006, he provides tailor-made consultancy services to business owners targeting high net- worth consumers within luxury goods, as well as commercial and residential real estate.



• PR strategy and communications consultancy
• Media relations in English and Chinese
• Brand and messaging development
• Digital & Social media content
• Creative copywriting in English and Chinese
• Sponsorship & partnership management
• Influencer relations
• Celebrity Endorsement
• Event Management
• Corporate Media Training
• CEO Interviews
Lara Jefferies - Founding Partner
Lara Jefferies
Founding Partner

Born in the UK but raised in Hong Kong, Lara delivers strategic and creative PR campaigns for prestige and lifestyle brands, from global household names to local boutique businesses.

She specialises in helping international clients define their proposition in Asia Pacific, supported by an international team that is wholly plugged into local and regional media, customs and cultures.

Lara first stepped into Public Relations with Darwall Smith Associates in London, where she worked with blue-chip global clients including Procter & Gamble and Pernod Ricard.

After returning to Hong Kong, she decided to strike out on her own in 2008 and founded Plug, an award-winning full-service PR consultancy based in vibrant Sheung Wan.

Her team is fast-paced, multi-lingual and dynamic; believing in the power of PR to deliver against their clients’ wide-ranging business objectives. Armed with a powerful network of influencers, acute consumer insight and a solid understanding of what the media want, Lara’s team offers a creative and comprehensive service, tailored to individual brands.



• Traditional and innovative research methodologies
• Market and competitor intelligence
• Brand building and value proposition development
• Customer & market data
• Workshops & Consumer Audits
Steven Altman - Managing Partner
Steven Altman
Founding and Managing Partner

A pioneer in research for the premium and affluent sectors, Steven has been responsible for establishing and leading Asia Pacific offices for noted global research organisations, with over 20 years spent in the region.

He prides himself on a close, collaborative working style, fostering a complete understanding of his clients’ business and going beyond traditional research methodologies to generate astute business insights.

Steven’s career began in his native UK, before a move to Bahrain saw him launch a Brand Health Monitoring system for the Gulf region. His move via the US to Asia in 1992 was with Nielsen, followed by NFO/TNS and IPSOS - driving regional development for the latter through growth and acquisition.

Having developed an offering in Hong Kong, Taiwan and the Philippines he established a specialist unit for the premium & luxury sector; an area on which he continued to focus on moving to IFOP in 2011 as Managing Director of the Affluent division.

Steven established inspiring-i to service an impressive client base across a comprehensive range of research methodologies and techniques. The results combine a keen knowledge of the market with actionable strategies for premium and lifestyle brands to access the affluent Asian consumer.



• CRM/digital capability building
• Omni-channel retail strategy
• Digital Infrastructure
• Customer data hygiene & segmentation
• Cloud-based platforms
Thierry Chrin - Founding Partner
Thierry Chrin
Founding Partner

Thierry provides strategic consulting across CRM and digital marketing, having spent 30 years developing and implementing information systems for a wide spectrum of globally-leading retail brands.

With long experience in multinational corporations, and supported by an agile and highly specialised team, Thierry’s clients are able harness the opportunities afforded by cloud-based platforms to transform their technology and processes.

Growing up between Cambodia and France, Thierry was immersed in rich tapestry of Asian cultures from an early age. He’s been based in Hong Kong since 1999 when he joined LVMH Asia Pacific as Chief Information Officer.

Thierry went on to take responsibility for Global Retail Operations for the LVMH fashion group and led Carrefour Asia’s commercial systems renovation before being appointed Global VP of Consumer-Facing Solutions for Estée Lauder Group in 2008.

He established Iris Consulting in 2012, providing his clients the calibre of expertise of a global Management Consultancy, with the pragmatism to implement their platforms rapidly and scale on demand. Credited with an exceptional talent for making IT understandable and relevant, Thierry leads a highly experienced team with a lean, down-to-earth offering.



Our Clients-The Consortium


A selection of our brand experience:

A selection of our brand experience



Contact- The Consortium


The Consortium is comprised of

Gouten Consulting
Iris Consulting



Please contact us at
+852 3182 7501
19/F Silver Fortune Plaza, 1 Wellington St,
Central – Hong Kong

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