Our Consultants


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Ilan Alon, Ph.D.

Dr. Ilan Alon is George D. and Harriet W. Cornell Chair of International Business and Director of The China Center at Rollins College, and Visiting Scholar and Asia fellow at Harvard University.

Dr. Alon has developed and taught franchising courses in China (Fudan University & China Europe International Business School, CEIBS), Italy (MIB School of Management), Germany (Jacobs University) and India (Integrated Institute for Learning and Management, IILM), and lectured extensively on the topic in various professional associations, including the International Franchise Association, International Society for Franchising, and the Academy of International Business.

Dr. Alon has also consulted USAID on franchising development in emerging markets. In Croatia, he aided in the development of the field of franchising through education to bankers, business consultants, and lawyers and support for budding home-grown franchisors. He has also consulted international franchisors, such as Darden (USA), Duhan (Croatia) and illy (Italy), to develop their national and international franchising systems.


Mark T. Ray

Mark T. Ray, MBA – External Advisor

Mark is currently one of the Directors at JLJ, a boutique consulting firm located in Shanghai China focusing on assisting foreign firms enter and grow in the China market. Mark has more than six years of market entry and consulting experience and has assisted more than 200 clients with their China market needs, including top brands such as Cartier, Tempur, Pinkberry, and Costa.

Mark regularly speaks in Shanghai’s business community on various topics and has been a guest lecturer at Fudan University in Shanghai. Mark was recently invited to speak at the Rhode Island and Vermont World Trade Day events to speak on opportunities for US companies in the China market.

Prior to joining JLJ, Mark worked at several leading US companies and government agencies including Freddie Mac, Countrywide Financial Corporation and the US Department of Commerce – International Trade Administration.

Mark holds an MBA from American University’s Kogod School of Business, located in Washington DC, with emphasis on Finance and International Economic Policy, and BA in History (emphasis on Asia) from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville.