"They entered the Chinese market at a venture."

Translation:De gick in på den kinesiska marknaden på vinst och förlust.

February 12, 2015

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I agree with the above, "on a venture" certainly isn't in common usage, at least in American language. I think a strict translation of "for profit or loss" would be better, or for something more idiomatic, "for better or worse," or "come what may." As it is, as a native English speaker, I've had to learn "on a venture" as the idiomatic answer to this Swedish sentence.


I just wanted to chime in to say that I very much doubt this sentence will make the next tree version. It's hardly a common phrase, nor one you very much need to know, so it's not a great fit for the course given how hard it is to translate well in brief into English.


I've been reading a lot of your comments as I go through the course and they're really helpful. Just want to say thank you for all your hard work!


Thank you! That's very kind of you. I'm glad they're helpful.


From the many years old mistakes I see going uncorrected for years despite much feedback and frustration, I'm guessing this won't be changing in this lifetime despite being one of the most totally meaningless garbage translations yet. (currently early 2022 for whoever is reading this in 2026 wondering how long it has been this way)


I'm not entirely sure what the last phrase means in Swedish, and the English translation isn't helping. Can someone please clarify?


Well, "venture" apparently means risk, spekulation, chansning in Swedish. And that is what the fixed expression "på vinst och förlust" means as well. Literally, it is "for profit or for loss".


I've never heard anyone say "at a venture" before. "On a venture," maybe, but it still sounds weird. Maybe people in business think that makes sense? I see what the Swedish is saying, but I just can't think of a good English version of it.


Sorry, I didn't realize that you actually speak Swedish. Did you know about the expression "på vinst och förlust" before? Hopefully someone else can help out when it comes to the English phrase :).


In business, people often say "on spec" (spec being short for speculation). A lot of people who have not hung out with businesspeople probably haven't heard that phrase either, but I reckon it would be a lot more common than "at a venture" in modern English.


I think on spec is pretty widely used and understood — certainly more so than on/as a venture.


I'm only like 25% a native Swedish speaker. Hence why I'm here to improve! I hadn't heard that Swedish phrase before - it makes sense once I know the base words, but like some Swedish phrase, I can't translate it neatly. I just know I don't like the current English translation listed - it sounds very weird. Hoping another native English speaker will jump in.


I'm another English speaker who has not encountered "at a venture" in this context before.

I would suggest:

"They entered the Chinese market as a speculative venture"

"They took a chance / took a punt on entering the Chinese market"


I have now informally surveyed a couple other English speakers in my life and no one thinks "at a venture" makes sense. I really think a more direct translation would be better. "For profit or loss"


I'm an English speaker with a son who studied economics in college (and talked about it a lot) and I've never heard the phrase "at a venture" before either. I'm trying to figure out what you'd say. "On a venture" ? "As a venture"? They're a little better, but no, not really. Sorry I'm no help here.....


For some reason I can't reply to coreopsis, so going here: it's just not a phrase that has a great equivalent in English. Wondering if "for better or for worse" is any better than "on a venture?" Actually, "for profit or for loss" would be a better translation than "at a venture," imo.


Just checked out Anrui's site. The word "venture" does not appear on the page for vinst at all. Hwever the phrase, "jag gick dit på vinst och förlust" is translated as "I went there on the off chance."

I have never heard the phrase "at a venture" before. So I just reported it as an incorrect translation.


Canadian native English speaker here... as per wiktionary.... take a flyer...

(idiomatic) To invest against odds. (idiomatic) To make a choice with an uncertain outcome; to take a chance. Synonyms (take a chance): roll the dice, take a gamble, take a risk


My first language is American English and I'm over 60. I never ran across the phrase "at a venture" before--so I doubt it's a common idiom. I checked a few dictionaries and only definition for the idiom in the Merriam-Webster Unabridged dictionary and a few other places (that I could find) is "at a venture (adverb): at hazard or random : without seeing the mark or foreseeing the issue." It wouldn't be something I'd want to see on company's prospectus.


"They ventured into the Chinese market" suggests the speculative nature of the investment, albeit obliquely. I vote strongly for "as a venture" to keep the sentence structured as is.


Yes, as a venture if we really must, but never at a venture. That simply makes no sense.


FWIW, at a venture does appear in Chambers Dictionary ("At hazard, random").

  • 1475

Does marknaden have the same range of meanings in Swedish as in English? In English it can either mean a small store (most usually a food store), or in an economic context it could refer to a general area of goods or services (either a geographical area where trade is carried on, or a category of goods). As a non-economist, the first thing that popped into my mind was walking past a small Chinese specialty food market and on the spur of the moment deciding to go in and see if they had something interesting to incorporate into my dinner. From the majority of the comments I am seeing here, it seems that it is the other meaning of the word that most people are imagining.

  • 2643

I also thought it was a store.


Could Duo please just banish "at a venture" from the English to Swedish version of this question? It's clear that English-speakers are unfamiliar with it. Maybe Duo mistyped "as a venture" but even that is not very clear.


Please refer to my reply to the top-level comment. While I am not a contributor any longer, I imagine my successors will agree with the sentiment. That said, removing a sentence from a current tree causes bugs that are worse than keeping the sentence, hence why it hasn't been deleted already.


As an English speaker I would say the best translation for 'på vinst och förlust' is 'on a whim'. It's not the most direct as 'whim' implies not thinking about the consequences, but it feels the most idiomatic to say.


Why is på needed after gick in? I can make sense of de gick in den, they entered the... But the på throws me off...


You need a second preposition with in, ut, and similar words when they mention a destination.

So it's de gick in but de gick in i huset.

It's de gick upp but de gick upp på taket.

As for why you go in på a market as opposed to in i, I have no idea. I suspect it's just prepositions being arbitrary.


Thank you; I didn't understand why "in i den..." was marked wrong.


Just to add to the voices here, I'm a native English speaker and a specialist financial translator (DE/FR-EN) with over 20 years experience in the field, and I've never come across the expression "at a venture' either! I like the "ventured into the Chinese market" suggestion above as a meaningful rendering, albeit not very close to the structure of the Swedish.

  • 1475

Perhaps the Americans would be happier with an English translation ....as a speculation. (or even as a gamble, though financial advisors don't seem to like gamble so much).


'On spec' sounds by far the best suggestion so far to me, although it is perhaps more informal than 'på vonstatten och förlust'.


I agree. "As a speculative venture" may also work.


Is "at a venture" a British phrase? I've never heard it in the US or Canada.

"They ventured into the Chinese market" might work better.


No, "at a venture" is not a British phrase. Judging by the discussion elsewhere in this thread, it is not an idiomatic phrase in any variety of English anywhere in the world. This sentence ought to have been removed from the course long ago, but it's still here and still causing distraction and confusion to learners.


The English makes no sense


I have no idea what the English sentence means. The Swedish sentence gave me a clue that it has to do with selling on a foreign market not having any idea if it will profit them or not. But how do you get that out of "on a venture".


The Dutch woyld have say ze hebben de chinese narkt betreden in de vorm van een joint venture


Nope, this is not about a joint venture, it's about taking uncalculated risk: "ze hebben de Chinese markt betreden op goed geluk" would be closer


Their venture into the Chinese market may result in profit or loss


Does it mean that the Chinese market is risky? As a man living in Hong Kong, I cannot really get what it means in both versions.


Why would I enter a market for a loss? Is this a known set phrase meaning something else?


I'd just like to say it's a very good phrase and it's good to learn set phrases like this. I certainly have heard it before. I was more interested in the word order of this sentence because I wrote på and den in the wrong order!


What function is gick in and på ? The site says entered is gick in, so why is på needed? This sentence construction makes no sense to me


As per devalanteriel's comment earlier on this page...

You need a second preposition with in, ut, and similar words when they mention a destination.

So it's de gick in but de gick in i huset.

It's de gick upp but de gick upp på taket.

As for why you go in på a market as opposed to in i, I have no idea. I suspect it's just prepositions being arbitrary.

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