Student to entrepreneur.

After moving from China to study in Adelaide, Nicho Teng fell in love with South Australia and chose to stay here and build a business, which is now a thriving success.

While Nicho had intended to return to China once he’d completed his studies in Adelaide, he felt Adelaide’s unique way of life and opportunities to build a business were too good to leave behind.

After completing high school and university, Nicho decided Adelaide was home.

“Adelaide attracted me because there are many people from different countries who live here,” Nicho said. “It offers the same attributes as other cities such as Melbourne and Sydney, but is much more relaxed and friendlier. It is not another Shanghai or Beijing but quite a traditional western city.”

Nicho stayed with a host family while studying at Glenunga International High School and believes this personal experience gave him a valuable and unique ‘local’ perspective that led him to love Adelaide as he does now. He remains in touch with the host family today.

“Staying with families as part of the homestay program during my high school years provided me with a greater knowledge of South Australia and being part of an Australian family. I was included in all their activities and it allowed me to experience the South Australian lifestyle.”

After studying a Bachelor of Commerce (Accounting) at Flinders University, Nicho went on to start his own business, Haneco Lighting, in 2011. Adelaide’s community and industry bodies have been hugely supportive in developing his business, which now employs 70 South Australians. 

“A lot of my employees are from the automotive industry,” said Nicho. “They have brought many skills which have easily transferred to the energy and lighting industry. I have found access to, and working with key people in the South Australian Government easy and quick. Processes are more simplified and streamlined than our dealings in the other states, and Adelaide is a very affordable place to do business. It provided me with the opportunity to start my own business in a relatively quick time.”

Nicho has since taken on the role of Managing Director for property developer Greaton and is involved in a number of business and networking groups, including the Australia China Business Council and the Hong Kong Australia Business Association SA, further facilitating beneficial ties between his two home countries of China and Australia.

For others considering making the move to South Australia, Nicho believes that the state is the best place to get a quality education.

“When you study here you get the opportunity to sit back and enjoy more of what life and the state has to offer. South Australia offers a good balance in studying, working and being able to enjoy life.”


Who: Nicho Teng

Visa Category: International student, Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme

What do you love about Adelaide? “Adelaide is a very accessible and convenient city to live in. It offers a wonderful climate and allows you to enjoy all four seasons. People who live here are more humble and kind.”

Find out more about the Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme here.


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