Mark Tanner
28 November 2018 0 Comments

Here are this week’s news and highlights for China:

Chinese consumers Chinese Consumers

Dolce & Gabbana Shanghai Show Canceled, Chinese Celebs and Models Flee Furor: How did D&G manage to make such a monumental blunder, again? How China’s general public perceive D&G racism row from the Global Times.

The American Dream is Alive. In China.: Here are two 18-year-olds, one in China, the other in the United States, both poor and short on prospects. You have to pick the one with the better chance at upward mobility. The answer is startling: China has risen so quickly that your chances of improving your station in life there vastly exceed those in the United States. Chinese men born in 2013 are expected to live more than seven years longer than those born in 1990; women are expected to live nearly 10 years longer. Some stunning charts highlight the unprecedented rise of Chinese consumers which is driving their optimism.

Chinese Consumers Aren’t Spending as Much. Many Are Worried About the Future: China’s retail sales growth dropped to 8.6% growth in October, yet remains well above the United States’ 4.6%. Chinese are spending more on travel, healthcare and dining out – 37% of new openings in Beijing shopping malls in the last 12 months were in food and beverage. Sportswear and home accessories store openings were also seeing significant growth. Credit purchases are an increasingly popular ways to pay with instalment platform Fenqile’s Singles’ Day customers doubling. The post-95 generation accounted for more than 60% of the total sales that day.

Digital China

China’s 2019 Ecommerce Laws Finally Announced: After much anticipation, Beijing has released the details of the new ecommerce laws which will be implemented on 1 January 2017.

Research Highlights Class Divide Between ‘Poor’ Apple iPhone and ‘Rich’ Huawei Users in China: Most iPhone users are unmarried females aged between 18 and 34, who graduated with just a high-school certificate and earn a monthly income of below ¥3,000 yuan ($432) according to Mobdata research. They are perceived to be part of a group known as the “invisible poor” – those who do not look as poor as their financial circumstances. By comparison, Huawei phone users are generally married males aged between 25 and 34, hold a diploma or bachelor’s degree and whose monthly incomes of ¥5,000-¥20,000 ($720-$2880). The research also found that a large proportion of Huawei users own flats and cars while Apple users do not. We’re not sure how robust this research is, but a good PR campaign for Huawei nevertheless.

China’s Courier Sector Rises 20.5% in First 10 Months: China’s courier sector rose 20.5% to ¥635.04 billion yuan ($91.5 billion) year-on-year in the first 10 months of 2018. 39.43 billion parcels were delivered. Cross-border courier services increased 38.4%. Guangzhou topped parcel delivery at 3.97 billion units, followed by Shanghai at 2.76 billion and Jinhua’s 2.75 billion.

Frustrated Chinese Consumers Embrace Curated Social Media Shopping Lists Amid ‘Infotoxication’: Single’s Day shoppers took to social media to complain about the sometimes-confusing nature of the online shopping experience, citing a bloated selection of products and a user experience that has become so esoteric that it spawned an entire industry of curated shopping lists. #canIcopyyourshoppinglist was the top-trending Singles’ Day term on Weibo and Little Red Book hosted more than 241,000 individual entries on its #Double11WorthList.

 Food & Beverage

Outcry and Arrests in China Over Abattoir Pumping Cattle with Water: Police in eastern China have detained 29 suspects linked to an abattoir that pumped water through tubes into cattles’ nostrils to inflate their slaughter weight before being carved up and sold. Stills from a video clip shot by an undercover reporter showed a swollen cattle on its knees with tears in its eyes provoking outrage on social media. Why wouldn’t you buy imported meat in China? Or condoms for that matter, with another bust involving millions of fake contraceptives posing a health risk due to excessive level of bacteria and fungi.

Hema’s Shanghai Manager Fired Over Expiration Date “Labelgate”: Employees at a Shanghai Hema store were caught switching out the expiration dates on packages of carrots in order to make them seem up to five days fresher.

Industry Group to Seek Public Comment on China’s First Craft Beer Standards: The China Alcoholic Drinks Association will soon solicit public feedback on the country’s first standards proposed for craft beers. China has 800 brands increasing at 40% annually, although it accounts for less than 1% of the entire sector in terms of consumption. Craft beers currently do not come under the scope of the country’s food production licensing review.

 Health & Beauty

Chinese Selfie App Meitu Faces up to ‘Natural Look’ Beauty: Doe-eyed girls with slender faces used to be all the rage on the Chinese internet. Not anymore. It is giving way to a trend toward a more sophisticated, more natural concept of beauty among certain segments of Chinese consumers. Meitu – the app that ‘beautifies’ women worth $8 billion in 2016 – has been so popular, the results have become predictable for many. It has become boring, seeing the app introduce new features as it scrambles to keep up with the natural-look trend. The company’s total monthly active user numbers dropped by almost 16% to just over 350 million in the six months to June 2018. In the case of its Meipai app, user numbers plunged by more than 55%.

Ping An Good Doctor Blazes Trail in Developing Unstaffed, AI-Assisted Clinics in China: China’s biggest online healthcare services provider plans to build ‘hundreds of thousands’ of its telephone booth-sized, AI-powered clinics and roll these out across the country in three years.

Chinese sport Sport

The NBA is China’s Most Popular Sports League. Here’s How it Happened: The NBA has formed partnerships with some of China’s biggest tech companies and opened NBA stores and new experience concept stores inside malls. The NBA is the most followed sports league on social media with more than 150 million followers. It’s popularity on social media has changed the way that organizations like the 76ers now market themselves in China, allowing them to create content and distribute it really quickly and in a lot of different ways.

Patriot Games: How Nationalism Is Holding Chinese Athletes Back: As Suzhou Marathon competitors He Yinli of China and Ayantu Abera Demissie of Ethiopia raced neck and neck toward the finish line, two volunteers separately rushed onto the track to hand He Chinese flags. It’s another example where Chinese nationalism is affecting results.


Porsche Defies China Slowdown Thanks to Rich Millennials: In the first 10 months of this year, Porsche’s sales in Greater China grew 4% from a year ago, while auto sales in general in mainland China fell by 0.1% during the same period. The premium segment appears more resilient to the economic slowdown thanks to the younger Chinese buyers. Porsche car owners have an average age of 37 (up from 35 in 2015), compared with 40-50 internationally. In mainland China about 40% of Porsche’s cars were bought by women versus 20% globally.

That’s the Skinny for the week! See previous newsletters here. Contact China Skinny for marketing strategy, research and digital advice and implementation.

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