This week’s China market and marketing news:
First Day of Double 11 Shopping Festival Sets New Records, Livestreams Drive Sales Spike: Alibaba’s Double 11 (Singles’ Day) shopping festival kicked off on 21 October, with livestreaming sales on Taobao Live surpassing last year’s first day sales in the first 10-minutes. 12 cosmetic products each recorded more than ¥100 million ($15 million) sales in the first hour.
China’s Cross-Border Ecommerce, or Haitao, Grows on Search for Exclusivity and Thrift: Sales of imported beauty, fashion and health products grew more than 100% year on year on JD Global during June’s 618 promotion.
ByteDance Tests the Waters of Cross-Border Ecommerce: ByteDance is reportedly testing a cross-border ecommerce service, Fuxiang Haigou, accessible through mini-programs on Douyin and the news aggregator Toutiao. Livestreaming through Alibaba’s cross-border platform, Tmall Global, reached ¥470 million ($70.2 million) in Q3 last year, up from ¥62 million ($9.3 million) in 2018. It is likely to be much higher again this year.
ByteDance Apps Toutiao, Douyin Engage Chinese Consumers Longer than Tencent’s WeChat, Survey Says: Users of news aggregator Toutiao spent an average of 73.4 minutes on the app every day, while those on Douyin spent a daily average of 72.9 minutes. WeChat engaged its users by a daily average of 60.6 minutes. Users of Kuaishou and Xiaohongshu (Little Red Book) spent close to an hour on each app. 26.4% of China’s 904 million Internet users spend more than three hours on these platforms every day.
China set to keep up 5% growth through 2035, Xi adviser says: The Chinese economy will probably continue expanding at a roughly 5% annual clip over the next 15 years, an adviser to President Xi Jinping told Nikkei, citing a rapidly developing technology sector. China’s high-tech capabilities are advancing swiftly, seeing the country become “the world’s largest exporter of high-tech products”, according to Tsinghua University professor Hu Angang. “China’s high-tech exports have increased by an average of 7.1% a year from 2007 to 2018.” The domestic market also presents enormous opportunity for growth, in line with Xi Jinping’s “dual circulation” economic model.
China’s Billionaires See Biggest Gains Ever, Adding More than $1.5 Trillion to their Fortunes: China minted 257 billionaires over the past year – five new billionaires a week, bringing the total to 878, according to the Hurun Rich List 2020. The billionaires added $1.5 trillion to their wealth this year – more wealth than the last five years combined – bringing the total worth of China’s billionaires to $4 trillion. China’s soaring stock markets, a flood of initial public offerings and surging growth in the tech sector have all helped to fuel the country’s latest wealth boom. Jack Ma topped China’s billionaire ranking for the third year in a row, with $59 billion.
Chinese Personal Shoppers and Australian Brands Devastated by the Impact of Coronavirus: Before Covid-19, there were an estimated 150,000 daigou in Australia. The decline in overseas arrivals, particularly international students has hurt, as has a preference for products produced or stored in China due to concerns around parcels ‘contracting’ Covid during delivery. Around 1,000 specialty daigou brick and mortar stores are dotted across Australia, but an estimated 30% are now closed temporary or permanently. One of the biggest logistic providers for daigou shoppers — Blue Sky International Express — went bankrupt in May.
Young Chinese Bemoan Rat Race With Tongue-in-Cheek Memes: China’s pandemic-addled workforce is finding solace in self-deprecating humour, which have created buzzwords on social media such as dagong zai (“migrant worker”), ban zhuan (“brick movers”), shechu (“corporate cattle”), and jiaban gou (“overtime dog”).
Dairy Company Fined $45,000 Over ‘Incorrect’ Map of China: Chinese brand Bright Dairy has been fined ¥300,000 ($45,000) for a video advertisement published on the company’s website. A map in the video had failed to show China’s “complete and correct territory.” China enforces strict regulations for maps published within its borders, requiring them to be submitted for review by the relevant authorities. In August last year, 29 Fortune 500 companies had taken down maps it had called out as “problematic.”
Impossible Foods Launches in Asian Grocery Stores as it Aims to Move into China: Impossible says it launched in about 200 grocery stores in Hong Kong and Singapore last week as it vies to bolster its presence in Asia and before entering the potentially lucrative mainland China market. Impossible is still awaiting regulator approval for its key ingredient, heme, made from genetically modified yeast.
Alibaba Shops for Hypermarket Chain Sun Art in $3.6 billion Deal: Alibaba will invest $3.6 billion to acquire a controlling stake in hypermarket operator Sun Art Retail, hoping to further leverage its digital presence to support Sun Art’s 481 RT-Mart and Auchan hypermarkets in China.
Chinese Food Manufacturers Face Pressure: 87% of consumers in China are more concerned about food safety than they were just a year ago. Food hygiene was the biggest food priority among 82% of the respondents, followed by nutrition with 73%. When asked about their chief concerns, 56% said it was finding foreign objects, such as metal or plastic, in their food. 92% admitted that they thought food waste is a problem. Just 18% were ‘very confident’ that food labelled as organic is truly grown or reared in such conditions.
Nutrition and Beauty in China: Formulas and Active Ingredients the Key Purchasing Factors – Swisse Research: Chinese consumers are most concerned with dark facial spots when buying beauty products. The key determining factor for buying a product lies in the formula and active ingredients used. Other concerns include skin dullness, dry skin, wrinkles, sagging skin, enlarged pores, pimples, oily skin, and skin redness and sensitivity.
39 Chinese are Thailand’s 1st Foreign Tourists in 7 Months: 39 Chinese tourists flying to Bangkok from Shanghai on the “Special Tourist Visa” have committed to a staying at least 30 days. They were issued 90-day visas that can be renewed twice. After arriving, they must stay in government-approved quarantine at a hotel or hospital for 14 days and prove they have long-term accommodation. They must have special insurance policies, undergo pre-departure testing for the virus and download an official coronavirus-tracking application for use during their stay. At least two other flights from China are expected later this month.