Craig Alvey, B '85
Consulting firm owner incorporates experience in financial services industry in Asian markets and starts his own business
January 16, 2012
International business professional Craig Alvey, B ’85, was first attracted to the University of Richmond’s suburban campus setting and its educational reputation.
“I am from the Boston, Mass. area and I went to Northeastern University for two years,” he said. “I chose the University of Richmond because of its excellent reputation and its commitment to improve the quality of its education, which I figured would be a benefit after graduation.
The Robins School of Business and the smaller school atmosphere were also appealing to Alvey when making his transfer decision.
“The feel and size of the school and the friendliness of the people I met when visiting the campus were all factors that made the University of Richmond attractive to me,” Alvey said. “Having a dedicated School of Business was a big attraction as well.”
Alvey, who completed a co-op program at his previous institution, had two years of business experience under his belt when he entered the Robins School.
“The Robins School’s curriculum was the perfect complement to that experience,” he said.
After graduating from the University armed with a business degree, Alvey recalled feeling prepared for the challenges that he embarked on in the real world of business. “The classroom education provided me with the educational base I needed and for which I'm very grateful,” Alvey recalled.
“I was fortunate to have wonderful professors and talented classmates.”
One of his most notable positions in the business world took him to Bangkok, Thailand where he worked in the insurance industry at Nationwide Life Assurance. Throughout his four years working in Asia in the financial services industry, Alvey was instrumental in ultimately selling Nationwide Life Assurance.
During that time, “one of the Asian countries we targeted for market entry when I was running Asia for Nationwide was Thailand,” Alvey explained.
“I led the acquisition effort to purchase a leading life insurer in the country, and several years later led the sale effort when Nationwide Insurance changed its strategic goals to return being solely a domestic U.S. entity.”
Alvey looks back in his time working in Asia fondly. “I loved the experience and which was even more challenging and rewarding as I was the only non-Thai person in the company.”
Upon planning his return to the United States, Alvey did some self-reflection on how he could translate his experience in financial services in Asia into a company that would operate internally.
“I wanted to stay involved internationally, but also made a commitment to my family not to move again [out of the U.S.],” he explained. “I figured that I could leverage my experience in Asia to offer consulting services (initially I helped U.S. companies define their Asian strategies) to companies.”
Thus, Alvey International was established in 2004. “Alvey International is a privately held international consulting company dedicated to helping companies develop and implement operational and strategic initiatives,” according to Alvey.
Alvey International focuses on helping businesses develop strategies for operating in the Asian market, as well as assisting organizations in promoting and distributing their goods by web-design and implementing marketing strategies.
The organization, headquartered in Marshfield, Mass., has two employees in Thailand and several contracted partners in the United States and Europe in addition to Alvey himself.
“In the work that I do, the network of people that's available to leverage to fulfill specific projects is the key to the company's success,” Alvey said.
Speaking of success, Alvey credits the education he received in the Robins School as integral in his achievements.
“I’m very grateful for my education at the University of Richmond,” he said. “I have been reasonably successful to date and as far as degrees go, I only have my undergraduate business degree from the Robins School.”