Category: Leaders

Wine in China: A Fruitful Opportunity If You Can Hit the High Notes

While the wine industry in China has been booming for years now, the industry is far from the simple gold mine that it seemed to be in the past. Those who have lived in China for some time will remember the ‘grape rush’ circa 2010, as many a Frenchman came to cities such as Shanghai, quickly opening up a wine importing / retail company, before just as quickly shutting it down as Chinese consumers were able to buy any grape under the Sun from Tmall and China’s other m-commerce giants.

A decade ago, a bottle of wine was a mere box on the checklist of middle-class aspiration – a token alongside cheese, coffee and golf – while nowadays there has been a shift to genuine enjoyment, knowledge and dare we say oenophilia (while a checklist photo of the wine glasses ‘cheers’ is still a common WeChat sight come Friday evening). Domestic vineyards are proving so bountiful that Chinese wine tourism is set to becomine a thing. Counterfeiting is finally being tackled. Trade organisations are allegedly throwing huge amounts of money at borderline unknown Chinese ‘KOLs’ to live-stream themselves drinking particular wines.

China’s cup poureth over in terms of demand, with the country set to become the world’s second biggest wine market overall by 2020, and is in fact already leading in the top-end segment, as is revealed below. But what is the state of this unique marketplace? In terms of reaching the Chinese wine drinker whether you’re a national wine group, a label, importer or restaurant/bar, what’s happening in 2018 and what should you know about the ‘grape wall of China’? Continue reading “Wine in China: A Fruitful Opportunity If You Can Hit the High Notes”

5 Questions with: Sporty Bitch at Wellness Uncovered, M on the Bund Shanghai

At the recent M Talk, hosted at M Glam on the Bund, the theme Wellness Uncovered saw entrepreneur and KOL speakers discuss the booming wellness and vegan industries in China.

One of the speakers was ‘Sporty Bitch’, the fitness and lifestyle blogger who has grown a loyal, avid readership of her brutally honest and highly informative perspectives on everything to do with getting fit and living well.

We took a moment to speak with Sporty Bitch about her success and where she sees the industries heading.

Continue reading “5 Questions with: Sporty Bitch at Wellness Uncovered, M on the Bund Shanghai”

5 Questions with: Samantha Shum, Founder of Keiki

Parenting in China is a booming business – the rapid evolution of the modern, affluent Chinese parent and family unit has led to spicy mamas and wonder dads who see no reason why luxury shouldn’t extend to all of the family.

For any baby, child or family brand looking to conceive a China strategy and thrive here, competition is fierce. In last month’s CBME Shanghai alone, there were literally thousands of such brands all hopeful to eventually grow in China, but first simply access their target consumer and tell their own brand story. Continue reading “5 Questions with: Samantha Shum, Founder of Keiki”

5 Questions with: Jens Puttfarcken, President & CEO of Porsche China

Last month saw Shanghai as the location for the World Premiere of the new Macan. This was no coincidence, as China is now the largest individual market for Porsche for the third year in a row. Of the 350,000+ Macans sold since 2014, over 100,000 are in China.

China’s passion for Porsche began long ago and the feeling is clearly mutual, with bold new projects such as the Porsche Experience Centre in Shanghai, next to the F1 International Circuit, being the first in Asia. Continue reading “5 Questions with: Jens Puttfarcken, President & CEO of Porsche China”

5 Questions with: Bamboo Zhou, CEO of 8 Continents, Luxury Chinese Travel Agency

8 Continents Travel is one of the leading ‘ultra-luxury’ travel agencies in China. Founded in 2012 and headquartered in Shanghai (with further offices in Beijing and Chengdu), 8 Continents provides customised travel for HNWI clients to all over the world, whether for honeymoons, world-tours or adventurous destinations such as Antarctica. Continue reading “5 Questions with: Bamboo Zhou, CEO of 8 Continents, Luxury Chinese Travel Agency”

5 Questions with: Barry Lin, VP of TuNiu Destination Marketing; China’s Travel Booking Giant

Founded in 2006, TuNiu is the leading online leisure travel company in China – the Nasdaq-listed platform has the largest market share (28.4%) in the online leisure and holiday market, and currently holds over 2 million holiday package SKUs. The Luxury Conversation met up with one of the most influential men in the China travel sphere, VP of TuNiu Destination Marketing Services Department, Barry Lin, during his recent visit to Shanghai. Continue reading “5 Questions with: Barry Lin, VP of TuNiu Destination Marketing; China’s Travel Booking Giant”

5 Disruptive Statements from China Connect Shanghai 2018

Sometimes the hyperbole is justified. While headline statements can be guilty of lazily inserting top-shelf buzz such as game-changer, disruptor or next-gen for their tabloid effect, the talks at China Connect warrant the provocative wordage.

An event with talks that were both interesting and presented with aplomb, China Connect Shanghai 2018 brought together experts from a broad variety of fields. Here are some of the more eye-catching statements from the day. Continue reading “5 Disruptive Statements from China Connect Shanghai 2018”

WeChat’s Next-Gen: ‘WeLife’ Previewed at China Connect, Shanghai 2018

The Luxury Conversation attended China Connect’s Shanghai 2018 edition, which featured expert speakers talking about what’s currently at the tip of the spear of engagement with China’s consumers. A wide-ranging and insightful event, attended by over 300 people, China Connect was held at The Explorium on Yishan Road.

Among the engaging talks was that by Sophia Ong, GM of Strategic Partner & Key Account at Tencent, in which Sophia spoke about the well-known (let’s go ahead and call it God-like) power of WeChat and the Tencent eco-system.

Sophia’s presentation clarified that luxury brands need to quickly maximise their WeChat adoption and adaptation in order to keep up with the expectations of the Chinese consumer. Here are the key takeaways from the talk – with a thrilling preview into the next generation of WeChat commerce capabilities: WeLife. Continue reading “WeChat’s Next-Gen: ‘WeLife’ Previewed at China Connect, Shanghai 2018”

5 Questions with: Simon Bosshart, APAC Director of Switzerland Tourism

Switzerland offers all of the key aspects desired by affluent Chinese travellers – exclusivity, adventure, sports and a WeChat-picture-perfect landscape at every turn. The third most visiting nation – and rising – Switzerland has clearly been communicating its message in China at the right places, to the right people. A Chinese-Swiss Tourism Year highlighted the rise in popularity of the destination.

So how is Switzerland achieving just the right kind of marketing, and how has this message and the country’s tourism market goals changed over the last several years?

The Luxury Conversation spoke with Simon Bosshart, who has been the Switzerland Tourism Director of China since 2006, and Director of APAC since 2014. Continue reading “5 Questions with: Simon Bosshart, APAC Director of Switzerland Tourism”

5 Questions with: Richard Li, Founder & CEO of Secoo, China’s Leading Premium E-Commerce & Lifestyle Platform

Last month, Secoo held a brand upgrade press conference, to announce their new slogan – ‘Devoted to You’ and to introduce the brand’s expansion plans. Already the leading premium lifestyle platform with over 25% market share, these bold new plans centred on customisation – unique collaborations with Chinese designers and talents, personalisation – high-end travel and personalised education packages, rental – a seven-day luxury bags and watches service, as well as partnerships and co-branding aimed at diversifying Secoo into new products and offline, social experiences. Continue reading “5 Questions with: Richard Li, Founder & CEO of Secoo, China’s Leading Premium E-Commerce & Lifestyle Platform”