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China Revises Taxation Rules For Imported Goods Sold Online

March 25, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
China is amending its tax rules for imported products sold online by removing a special tax, also known as parcel tax, previously imposed on such goods. Replacing the parcel tax will be value-added and consumption duties that are at present levied on most products sold in the country. According to China’s Ministry of Finance, however, the new tax will come with a 30-percent discount. In January 2016, China expanded a pilot program, which allowed a port district in the city of Hangzhou to trade imported goods at lower rates. Online sales of imported goods in China have expanded at a CAGR of 63 percent in the five-year period ending 2015 to reach 638 billion yuan, or $98 billion, accounting for 17 percent of the country’s total online retail sales, data from Mintel Group Ltd. revealed.
Daniela Wei, "China Changes Online Import Tax Rules, a Move to Help Cosmetics", Bloomberg Business, March 25, 2016, © Bloomberg L.P.
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Mobile Commerce Accounts For Bigger Part Of Ecommerce In China, Analysts Report

March 23, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
Mobile sales accounted for almost 50 percent of ecommerce sales in China in 2015, according to eMarketer. Data from Analysys International Enfodesk revealed mcommerce accounted for almost two-thirds of retail and consumer-to-consumer ecommerce sales in China in the fourth quarter of 2015, an increase of 55.5 percent from the previous quarter. In 2016, eMarketer predicts retail mcommerce sales in the country will grow 51.4 percent, accounting for 55.5 percent of retail ecommerce sales in China for the year.
"Ecommerce Turns into Mcommerce in China", eMarketer, March 23, 2016, © eMarketer Inc.
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Wal-Mart Bribery Probe Is Nearing Completion, U.S. Prosecutors Say

March 18, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
U.S. prosecutors are nearing completion of their international probe into bribery allegations against Wal-Mart Stores Inc. During the four-year investigation, which covered Mexico, Brazil, India, and China, U.S. Justice Department officials have faced various challenges, including in Mexico where results of investigation were too old to be used as evidence. In China, prosecutors saw their work hampered by the country’s disclosure rules and lack of evidence. Wal-Mart has promised to cooperate with U.S. authorities and spent almost $750 million on its own probe and on reorganizing its compliance operations.
Tom Schoenberg & Shannon Pettypiece, "Wal-Mart Probe in Final Lap With Scant China Findings", Bloomberg, March 18, 2016, © Bloomberg L.P.
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Alibaba-Tencent Rivalry Now Reaches China's Energy Industry

March 10, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
China’s largest Internet companies, Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. and Tencent Holdings Ltd., expanded their rivalry to include the country’s oil and gas industries. Alibaba agreed to provide China National Petroleum Corp., the local oil and gas production giant, with Internet-based services. Alibaba’s deal came after Tencent signed in August 2014 a collaboration deal with China Petroleum & Chemical Corp., which operates more than 30,000 fuel stations across the country, in areas including mobile payments and media marketing.
Aibing Guo et al, "Alibaba and Tencent Extend Their Web Battle to the Gas Station", Bloomberg Business, March 10, 2016, © Bloomberg L.P.
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Walmart Unveils Expansion Plans In Southern China

March 7, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
Walmart plans to build eight new stores and a distribution center in China’s south region. Following the retailer’s signing of a cooperation memorandum with the local government of Dongguan, an industrial city near Hong Kong and Macau, the planned facilities are part of Walmart’s expansion in the region. According to the retailer, the planned expansion will create more than 3,000 new jobs in the city in the next five years.
"Walmart expands in southern China", Retail Analysis, March 07, 2016, © The Institute of Grocery Distribution
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L'Oreal Sells More Cosmetics In China Than In France

February 26, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
L’Oreal SA CEO Alexis Perakis-Valat said the French cosmetics company’s sales in China grew 4.6 percent to 14.96 billion yuan, or $2.29 billion), in 2015. With sales growth driven in a large part by the local market’s multi-brand make-up boom, the company now sells more cosmetics in China than it does in France. Perakis-Valat also said the market boom is due to the growing “selfies” trend among women in China.
Xu Junqian, "Selfies help drive L'Oreal's China sales amid a beauty craze", China Daily, February 26, 2016, © China Daily Information Co (CDIC)
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L'Oreal Names Rinderknech CEO Of China Business

February 25, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
L’Oreal appointed Stephane Rinderknech as CEO of L’Oreal China. He succeeds Alexis Perakis-Valat, who will remain as EVP in charge of the Asia Pacific zone and member of L’Oreal’s Executive Committee in Shanghai. Rinderknech will remain head of L’Oreal China’s Consumer Products Division.
"New appointment L’Oréal China", L'Oréal, February 25, 2016, © L'Oréal
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Asia Leads Growth In World Market For Men's Beauty

February 18, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
In the period 2012–2014, the global market for men’s grooming products grew 70 percent and is forecast to reach $21.4 billion in 2016. Asia accounts for more than 60 percent of the market, with growth forecast at almost 10 percent. In China, for example, the men’s grooming market is expanding at 20 percent a year, while in South Korea, the category is growing 20 percent each year. Factors driving market growth in Asia include the public perception that beauty is both an entry to and marker of success and the adoption of feminized styles by leading J-pop and K-pop male artists.
Kathryn Sloane and Benjamin Chong , "Men’s Beauty Goes Big in Asia", Beauty Packaging, February 18, 2016, © Rodman Media
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Chinese Company Acquires Syngenta In Push To Ensure Country’s Food Supply

February 3, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
After Monsanto failed to secure a purchase deal, ChemChina has made an offer to acquire Swiss crop protection company Syngenta at $465 a share. ChemChina’s main businesses include materials science, life science, high-end manufacturing and basic chemicals. Syngenta’s corporate vision jibes with China’s priority to ensure the food supply for its people. Syngenta enables farmers to make better use of available resources and “to transform how crops are grown.” Industry observers say only ten percent of China’s farmland is managed efficiently after years of intensive farming and overuse of chemicals. The land has been debased and the water supply poisoned. One of Syngenta’s major functions is to rescue land from degradation, enhance biodiversity and revitalize rural communities.
Alexandra Stevenson et al., "Syngenta Board Seeks Approval of ChemChina’s $43 Billion Offer", The New York Times, February 03, 2016, © The New York Times Company
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Battered By Poor Sales In China, Hershey Girds For The Future

February 3, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
Chocolate maker Hershey’s has its work cut out over the coming years, according to Euromonitor. Though profit was satisfactory, overall sales fell slightly in 2015 – and by five percent in the fourth quarter and 13 percent in China. The company, which advanced in recent years into the international market, is struggling to keep up with competitors. The core North American market is softening as per capita chocolate volume growth slows. Americans who buy chocolate are turning to higher quality brands, and that has led to competitive pressure from Lindt and Ferrero. Over the next five years, Hershey’s is expected to focus on its non-confectionery portfolio, pushing wider distribution of Krave Jerky meat snacks and Brookside Snack Bars in 2016.
Jack Skelly , "The Fourth Quarter Caps off a Year to Forget for Confectionery Giant Hershey", Blog, Euromonitor International, February 03, 2016, © Euromonitor
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China's E-Commerce Market Grows 37 Percent In 2015, Study Reveals

January 25, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
China’s e-commerce market grew 37 percent in terms of gross merchandise value in 2015 to 3.8 trillion yuan, or $578 billion, according to iResearch. Data from the market research firm’s “2015 China E-commerce & O2O Summary Report” revealed mobile and online-to-offline markets drove the market’s overall growth. O2O gross merchandising volume rose 38 percent year-on-year in 2015, with sales reaching 335 billion yuan, or $51 billion. According to iResearch, the country’s O2O sector is forecast to grow to almost double its size in the next three years to 626 billion yuan, or $95 billion.
Casey Hall, "Chinese E-commerce Growth Continues", Women’s Wear Daily, January 25, 2016, © Fairchild Fashion Media
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More U.S. Companies Think Of Moving Capacity From China To Other Locations, AmCham China Report Reveals

January 20, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
In 2015, only 64 percent of U.S. companies doing business in China described their operations as profitable, the lowest level in the last five years, according to the American Chamber of Commerce in the People’s Republic of China. Results of the group’s 2016 China Business Climate Survey Report revealed almost half of respondents predict China’s overall GDP growth in 2016 will fall below 6.25 percent. Member companies cited economic challenges and the regulatory environment as key factors limiting their ability to invest and grow in the country. Human resources issues, including labor costs and shortage of qualified workers, are also among the top 5 problems cited by member companies. Although China remains a top 3 investment priority for six out of 10 member companies, about one-third of respondents said they are not planning to increase their investments in the country in 2016. By the end of 2015, 25 percent of respondents have either already moved or are planning to move operations outside of China.
"2016 China Business Climate Survey Report", AmCham China, January 20, 2016, © American Chamber of Commerce in the People's Republic of China
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WeChat Launches Service Allowing Consumers To Share Coupons In China

January 17, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
Mobile and web messaging company WeChat launched its shared coupons service for retailers in China. Designed to let users of the messaging service share coupons for dining, shopping, or entertaining, the service also lets consumers receive coupons at offline stores. Shared coupons will be classified based on location to let users gain access to wide range choices. Participating retailers can distribute shared coupons with consumers offline and can monitor consumers’ usage of the coupons.
"WeChat Offering “Friends-Shared Coupons” for Retailers", China Internet Watch, January 17, 2016, © Incitez Pte. Ltd.
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Chinese Parents, Fearing Contamination, Turn To Australia For Infant Formula

January 16, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
Investors in Australian baby formula manufacturers are licking their chops as they contemplate a profitable future, thanks to surging demand from China. The demand has created an underground market in Australia, where stores have begun to ration formula to prevent supplies from being shipped to Chinese cities and sold at triple the original retail price. Demand for Western-produced formula has risen since the rescinding of China’s one-baby per family rule and a rise in infant food contamination outbreaks. China has strict milk safety rules, but Chinese parents apparently don’t trust the government to enforce them.
A. Odysseus Patrick, "China’s hunger for baby formula feeds underground market in Australia", The Washington Post, January 16, 2016, © The Washington Post
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Unilever Receives Top-Employer Honors From China's Top Employers Institute

January 14, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
Unilever was named the number 1 employer in China by the Top Employers Institute. Unilever China, which has a number of initiatives aimed at meeting the challenges posed by the China market, has been implementing programs to always improve its HR strategies and policies. Its efforts to put people at the heart of its business has earned Top Employers Institute’s recognition, the company said.
"Unilever named top employer in China", Unilever, January 14, 2016, © Unilever
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Euromonitor Presents Forecasts For Markets And Consumers In 2016

January 14, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
In 2016, the migrant crisis is forecast to continue, while the working-age population in China is expected to decline for the first time, according to Euromonitor. Other forecasts for the year made by the market research firm include an increase in integration of loyalty programs with mobile wallets and the continued expansion of S-commerce, driven by social media platforms’ integration of buy-now buttons into their sites. Also, Euromonitor predicts an increase in calls for more time away from digital devices and increase in consumer demand for healthy food, with fastfood chains offering greener, healthier, and more local food products.
Carrie Lennard, "Economies and Consumers Expert Predictions for 2016", Euromonitor International, January 14, 2016, © Euromonitor
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Sephora Launches Environment-Friendly Logistics Solutions In China

December 22, 2015: 12:00 AM EST
Cosmetics retailer Sephora launched its Green City Logistics, a supply chain solution designed to be environment-friendly by using electric vehicles in delivery, in Shanghai and Beijing. Part of the company’s latest efforts to protect the environment and cut pollution, the initiative seeks to reduce the emission of carbon dioxide from logistics and transportation in fast-expanding mega-cities. Electric vehicles will be used to transport goods between Sephora warehouses and retail stores.
Patsy Yang , "Sephora taps green logistics to boost efficiency", Shanghai Daily, December 22, 2015, © Shanghai Daily
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Study Estimates Job Loss Impact Of Walmart’s China Imports

December 9, 2015: 12:00 AM EST
A study by a progressive research organization accuses Walmart of displacing or eliminating more than 400,000 high-paying American manufacturing jobs by importing many billions of dollars’ worth of products from China over a twelve-year period ending in 2013. The Economic Policy Institute says Walmart’s imports from China in 2013 alone totaled $49 billion. The U.S. trade deficit with China in 2013 was $324 billion. The lost or moved jobs represented about 13 percent of the 3.2 million total jobs lost or displaced over those same years due to the China trade deficit. Walmart criticized the data and conclusions of the study as mostly guesswork, because retailers do not disclose itemizations of imports.
Hiroko Tabuchi, "Walmart’s Imports From China Displaced 400,000 Jobs, a Study Says", The New York Times , December 09, 2015, © The New York Times Company
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Procter & Gamble Retains Crown As China's Most Popular Brand For Urban Households, Survey Shows

November 25, 2015: 12:00 AM EST
In China, there were 21 fast moving consumer goods companies reaching more than 100 million urban households during the year ending October 9, 2015, according to Kantar Worldpanel. Data from the market research firm revealed Procter & Gamble was able to keep its lead among all FMCG companies, reaching 153 million urban families, or 95.5 percent, during the past 12 months. China-based dairy companies Yili and Mengniu took the next two spots with 88.5 percent and 88.2 percent of urban households, respectively. In contrast, only 15 companies reached more than 100 million urban households in the country in 2012. Although P&G and Unilever kept their lead in the personal care and household care segments, Liby and Nice Group posted impressive gains of 5.4 percent and 3.7 percent, respectively, during the period.
"Who Are Winning More Chinese Consumers in 2015?", Kantar Worldpanel, November 25, 2015, © Kantar Worldpanel
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Olay Launches Social Media Campaign For Olay Total Effects Line Of Skincare Products In China

November 24, 2015: 12:00 AM EST
Procter & Gamble’s Olay skincare brand lunched the “Be Spendthrift No More” social media campaign for its Olay Total Effects line of anti-aging moisturizers in China. Developed in partnership with Lauyeah Production and Strategic Communications Consultants, the campaign began with an online video showing eight women testing a product, with its brand unrevealed, and then were asked to guess its price. Also featuring Facebook posts, the campaign combines online and offline elements, running simultaneously with an outdoor event at Causeway Bay.
Jennifer Chan, "Olay rejuvenates brand via aggressive digital transformation", Marketing-Interactive, November 24, 2015, © Marketing-Interactive.com
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Different Skincare Concerns Occupy Consumers' Mind In China, Japan, And Korea

November 17, 2015: 12:00 AM EST
Consumers in China, Japan, and South Korea have different concerns and issues as far as skin care is concerned. For example, consumers in China are focused on the preventative treatment of skin ageing, while Korean consumers are more reactionary, treating damage as it appears. In Japan, consumers tend to “work alongside” with the ageing process.
Michelle Yeomans, "A look at China, Japan and Korea's priorities in skin care", Cosmetics Design , November 17, 2015, © William Reed Business Media SAS
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Alibaba Sets New Sales Record On 2015 Singles' Day

November 11, 2015: 12:00 AM EST
Online retailer Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. reported sales jumped 54 percent to $14.3 billion during the 2015 Singles’ Day, compared with sales recorded in the previous year. This highlights the resilience of consumer spending in China despite the current economic slowdown, the company said. It took just half a day for sales generated to overtake the previous year’s 24-hour total sales of $9.3 billion, the company also said.
Gillian Wong, "Alibaba Smashes Singles’ Day Record; Sales Hit $14.3 Billion", Wall Street Journal, November 11, 2015, © Dow Jones & Company, Inc
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Shiseido, Unicharm Join Other Japanese Personal Care Firms To Sell Online In China

November 6, 2015: 12:00 AM EST
Shiseido and Unicharm joined a group of Japanese personal care products companies that agreed to collaborate with each other and with online retailer Askul to sell products in China via the Alibaba Group online market. Under the collaboration deal, the companies will jointly develop toiletries and cosmetics for the China market and share sales data. Also, they may offer package deals combining products from different makers and brands based on what consumers buy together. Askul will sell the products on Alibaba’s Tmall Global site for foreign companies.
"Japanese toiletry makers team up to sell on Alibaba site", Nikkei, November 06, 2015, © Nikkei Inc.
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China’s FMCG Market Growth Slows, Though Online Shopping Is Booming

November 2, 2015: 12:00 AM EST
Spending in China’s fast moving consumer goods (FMCG) market slowed in the year that ended in September, growing by only 4.7 percent, according to Kantar Worldpanel. For the third quarter, growth dropped to 2.7 percent, the lowest rate in three years, from 6.6 percent in the second quarter. Growth in hypermarkets, supermarkets and convenience stores grew only 2.4 percent in the third quarter. International retailers continued to struggle: market share slid from 14.5 percent to 13.5 percent. China’s local retailers fared much better. Sun-Art Group boosted market share to 7.5 percent, up from 6.9 percent in the third quarter of 2014. 2014Q3. Online shopping in China rose 37 percent during 2015, spurred by gains in penetration and purchasing frequency.
Jason Yu, "China FMCG market hits a new low growth", Report, Kantar WorldPanel, November 02, 2015, © Kantar WorldPanel
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Shiseido Reorganizes China Business To Revive Sales

October 31, 2015: 12:00 AM EST
Shiseido is reorganizing its business operations in China, which is partly blamed for the cosmetics company’s declining sales overseas. While Shiseido’s operating profit in Japan jumped 43 percent to 18 billion yen for the six-month period ending September 2015, the company suffered a 6.1 billion yen operating loss abroad. Shiseido president Masahiko Uotani came to Shanghai in October 2015 to meet with 140 executives at 62 wholesalers in the country to deal with the sharp drop in sales which started in August 2015. Inventory purchase and liquidation drove down the company’s operating profit by 5 billion yen during the period.
"Shiseido embarks on business makeover in China", Nikkei, October 31, 2015, © Nikkei Inc.
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China: Many Barriers To Health Food Land Of Milk And Honey

October 20, 2015: 12:00 AM EST
Health food marketers may think of China as a sort of “promised land” of sales opportunities, if a Chinese food industry five-year plan is to be believed. By 2019, health food sales in the country are expected to reach $48 billion, for several reasons: a growing overall obesity rate (up 67 percent between 2002 and 2012), a doubling of the obesity rate for children and adolescents, severe vitamin and mineral deficiencies, and mounting high blood pressure and cancer rates. Though Chinese consumers want high-quality foreign health foods, it’s still a daunting procedure for multinationals to get their products to market. It can take two to three years, and up to $15,800, to get one health food product registered under China’s blue hat system. The new Food Safety Law, now in effective, adds other hurdles.
Hua Deng, "Chinese New Regulation for Health Food Products", Natural Products Insider, October 20, 2015, © Informa Exhibitions LLC.
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Henkel CEO Disagrees With Too Harsh Assessment Of Economic Conditions In Emerging Markets

October 14, 2015: 12:00 AM EST
Economic conditions and prospects in emerging markets are not as bad as some analysts and investors claim them to be, according to Henkel chief executive Kasper Rorsted. Although the slowing growth in emerging markets is right to be blamed for the slowdown in global economic growth, economic conditions in China, Brazil, and other emerging markets are not as severe as the one that happened at the end of the last millennium. With lessons learned from the Asian crisis, currencies of most developing countries are not fixed, while governments are working hard to promote and ensure economic development. While not as robust as they were years ago, emerging markets’ economy is growing between 3 and 4 percent.
Kasper Rorsted , "Henkel Chief: Don't Be Too Pessimistic About Emerging Markets", Handelsblatt, October 14, 2015, © Handelsblatt GmbH
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LVMH Reports Weaker Sales; Sees Recovery In China Market

October 13, 2015: 12:00 AM EST
Luxury goods company LVMH reported group revenue fell 7 percent in the quarter ending September 30, 2015, compared with the 9 percent increase in the previous three-month period. In reported terms, revenue rose 16 percent in the third quarter, due to a slightly lower positive impact from a weaker euro. By region, the company saw sales decline 8 percent in Asia-Pacific, excluding Japan, which saw organic growth expand 24 percent during the period. In the previous quarter, Japan posted a 34 percent growth. Europe grew 12 percent, lower than the 14 percent recorded in the previous quarter, while the United States rose 12 percent. Shares in LVMH dropped 3.2 percent to close at €161.25 or $183.35 on the Paris Stock Exchange.
Joelle Diderich , "LVMH Sees Signs of Recovery in China", Women’s Wear Daily, October 13, 2015, © Fairchild Fashion Media
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Despite Economic Slowdown, China Remains World's Largest Market For Professional Skincare Products

October 8, 2015: 12:00 AM EST
China, Europe, and the United States are three of the largest markets for professional skincare products in the world, according to marketing research firm Kline. Data from the report “Professional Skin Care Global Series: Market Analysis and Opportunities” revealed ethnic and cultural influences are driving growth in China’s skincare market, with sales at spas, salons, beauty institutes, and physicians’ offices accounting for a bigger part of total market revenue. Chinese consumers prefer local brands, such as Amitabha, Chlitina, and Jourdeness; however, international brands, including SkinCeuticals, Decleor, and NeoStrata, are growing at rates higher than 8 percent and account for more than 8 percent of the total market. Worldwide, the professional skincare market is forecast to expand at a compound annual growth rate of almost 5 percent by 2019.
"China is a Hidden Dragon of the Professional Skin Care Products Market, and Europe Resurrects with its Highest Growth in 2015, Sees Kline", Kline, October 08, 2015, © Kline & Company
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Henkel Beauty Care Wins Retail Honors In China

October 5, 2015: 12:00 AM EST
Henkel Beauty Care won awards from Watsons, Mannings, and Nielsen for its China retail business in the third quarter of 2015. Considered the top honors in China’s retail sector, the Watsons Health, Beauty and Wellness Awards honor brands that have received wide reception among consumers. Henkel’s Schwarzkopf haircare brand won the Best of the Best award. Henkel also won the Best Supplier of the Year award from Mannings China in the Health and Beauty category for the third consecutive year. Henkel’s Schwarzkopf Freshlight Waterlily Moisture Shampoo was chosen as one of the 15 products in the hair category of Nielsen’s 4th Annual Consumer 360 Forum awards.
"Henkel Beauty Care China received various prizes in 3rd quarter", Henkel, October 05, 2015, © Henkel AG & Co. KGaA
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Wal-Mart Demands Lower Prices For Goods Made In China

September 23, 2015: 12:00 AM EST
Wal-Mart Stores Inc. is demanding lower prices from its suppliers that manufacture their goods in China. Seeking to share in the savings generated by China’s devaluation of the yuan, Wal-Mart managers in various countries have reportedly asked price cuts of 2 percent to 6 percent. Aimed at helping Wal-Mart maintain its “everyday low cost” or EDLC, the demand for cost cuts will cover mainly general merchandise, including home furnishings, apparel, and health and beauty products.
Nathan Layne and Nandita Bose, "Exclusive: Wal-Mart presses suppliers to share benefits of cheaper yuan", Reuters, September 23, 2015, © Thomson Reuters
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Euromonitor Identifies World's Top Countries With Fastest-Growing Middle Class

September 20, 2015: 12:00 AM EST
For the period 2015 to 2030, China, India, Indonesia, Nigeria, and the Philippines are forecast to have the fastest-growing middle class, according to Euromonitor International. Factors that are expected to make the middle class the “prominent consumer force” in these emerging countries include their growing size, strong income growth prospects, and a median income exceeding US$10,000 per household in 2030. According to Euromonitor, China will remain the world’s largest middle class despite its economic slowdown, while India is forecast to be among the top countries in terms of growth in median income. In Indonesia, middle-class households are expected to gain more purchasing power, while Nigeria’s middle class is forecast to reach 15 million in size by 2030. Economic growth stability and improved income distribution will drive the middle class in the Philippines to grow 41.8 percent.
An Hodgson, "Top 5 Emerging Markets with the Best Middle Class Potential", Euromonitor International, September 20, 2015, © Euromonitor International
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Unilever Opens Innovation Incubation Center In Shanghai

September 12, 2015: 12:00 AM EST
Unilever China partnered with the Shanghai Technology Entrepreneurship Foundation for Graduates to open The Unilever China Foundry, the company’s global innovation incubation program, in Shanghai, China. With Unilever investing at least €1 million per year, the Foundry project will accept business proposals aimed at helping the company in terms of smart technologies and marketing methods. Initial focus of the proposals will be on five leading requirements, including digital-enabled anti-counterfeiting technologies, smart vending platforms, and interactive packaging.
"The Unilever China Foundry lands in Shanghai", Shanghai Daily, September 12, 2015, © Shanghai Daily
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World Federation Of Advertisers Names Unilever Media Executive Porter Head Of China Forum

September 8, 2015: 12:00 AM EST
Unilever North Asia media director David Porter was appointed chairman of the World Federation of Advertisers’ Media Forum in China. Porter’s responsibilities will include supporting the WFA’s efforts to help marketers gain a better understanding of China’s media ecosystem. Launched in China in 2012, the Media Forum has held regular meetings in Shanghai. Porter, who joined Unilever in 2010, brings more than 30 years of marketing experience to the WFA job.
"Unilever’s David Porter to lead China forum", Marketing-Interactive.com, September 08, 2015, © Marketing-Interactive.com. Lighthouse Independent Media Pte Ltd
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Metro Group Partners With Alibaba To Promote Online Commerce In China

September 8, 2015: 12:00 AM EST
Retailer Metro Group partnered with Alibaba Group to promote e-commerce in China. As part of the strategic partnership, the companies will expand their e-commerce businesses in the country, with Metro Group opening a cross-border online store on Alibaba Group’s Tmall Global online market platform. According to the companies, they will also look at the feasibility of more collaboration opportunities in terms of sourcing, supply chain, and big data.
"METRO GROUP and Alibaba Group join forces to promote e-commerce in China", METRO GROUP, September 08, 2015, © METRO GROUP
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Tesco Data Analysis Unit Dunnhumby Partners With Chinese Grocery Chain

August 28, 2015: 12:00 AM EST
As British retail grocer Tesco finalizes plans to divest several of its businesses, one of the units on the auction block, data analyst Dunnhumby, has cemented a joint venture relationship with a large Chinese supermarket chain. Dunnhumby will partner with China Resources Vanguard, which operates 4,000 shops in Hong Kong and mainland China. The partnership will give Dunnhumby access to shopper data in a rapidly-expanding market that includes 20 million Vanguard loyalty card users. It also gives the company an opportunity to work with other retailers. Several industry and private equity buyers have expressed interest in acquiring Dunnhumby’s. Final bids are due in early September.
Arash Massoudi, "Tesco’s Dunnhumby sets up Chinese joint venture", Financial Times, August 28, 2015, © The Financial Times Limited
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The Macy’s Name May Not Be Magic Enough In China’s Online Market

August 24, 2015: 12:00 AM EST
If Macy’s hopes to succeed on China’s Tmall Global platform, it needs to understand the realities of Internet marketing to Chinese consumers today. Tmall enables foreign companies to advertise and sell directly to millions of China’s increasingly affluent online buyers. Macy’s is investing $25 million to tackle the Chinese online market and plans to sell $50 million worth of its premium brands in 2016 (without the brick-and-mortar stores). The key question is, why would Chinese consumers buy upscale brands like Coach and Estée Lauder from Macy’s? What value does the consumer get from a venerated old retailer? The answer: not much. The better approach would be to follow Costco’s successful Chinese marketing lead. “You’d think this is a nation of 1.3 billion squirrels, the way Costco is moving its private label Kirkland mixed nuts,” says the China Digital Review.
Sidney Sheldon, "Will Macy’s Magic Work in China?", China Digital Review, August 24, 2015, © China Digital Review
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Hot Coffee Market Share In China Grows As Tea Declines

August 17, 2015: 12:00 AM EST
Market researcher Canadean reports that 82 percent of the 1.28 billion kg of hot drinks consumed in China in 2014 was tea. But despite the fact that coffee drinking accounts for a small amount (5.7 percent) of hot drink consumption, it is the fastest growing segment of the market. Canadean says the volume growth of coffee over the next four years will be 15.4 percent. Hot coffee will achieve a market share of 8.4 percent by 2019, at the expense of tea’s market share. In terms of value, the Chinese hot coffee market – worth $2.1 billion in 2014 – is expected to more than double to  $4.5 billion by 2019.
"Tea still most consumed hot drink in China; but coffee making inroads", News release, Canadean report, August 17, 2015, © Canadean Ltd. Part of Progressive Digital Media Group Plc
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China’s App-Based Food Delivery Industry Is Booming

August 9, 2015: 12:00 AM EST
Startup food delivery companies backed by big investors like Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. and Tencent Holdings Ltd. have tapped into a vibrant market in China, as diners increasingly choose to order in. The app-based startups are providing stiff competition for struggling KFC and McDonald’s that have for years maintained armies of bike- or motorcycle-riding food couriers. New companies like Ele.me and Meituan Waimai that use mobile apps achieve economies of scale by partnering with thousands of Chinese restaurants and other food outlets. In 2014 the startup bike courier companies delivered $15.7 billion worth of food, a 54 percent increase over 2013, according to one research firm.
Laurie Burkitt, "In China, Fast-Food Fight Turns to Delivery", The Wall Street Journal, August 09, 2015, © Dow Jones & Company, Inc.
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Co-founders Of Walmart's China E-commerce Venture Resign

July 14, 2015: 12:00 AM EST
Wal-Mart Stores Inc. said the co-founders of its Yihaodian e-commerce business in China will leave the company. Citing plans to pursue new ventures, Yu Gang and Liu Junling are resigning as chairman and chief executive, respectively, of the online retailer. Wal-Mart holds a 51 percent stake in Yihaodian, which represents the American retailer's efforts to expand its online business in China. After the founders' departure, Wal-Mart is expected to expand its role in running the company, which for years has resisted the retail giant's efforts to consolidate the companies' logistics operations.
Sarah Nassauer And Laurie Burkitt, "Co-Founders of Wal-Mart’s Chinese E-Commerce Venture to Leave", Wall Street Journal, July 14, 2015, © Dow Jones & Company Inc.
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Alibaba Buys Stake In Luxury Online Store Mei.com

July 8, 2015: 12:00 AM EST
Alibaba Group Holding invested more than $100 million in Shanghai-based luxury online shopping company Mei.com. Part of Alibaba's efforts to expand its luxury business, the move will see Mei.com complementing the Chinese e-commerce giant's current selection of affordable luxury products for local consumers. Also, the move supports Alibaba's efforts to expand the luxury offerings of its online store Tmall.com.
Juro Osawa, "Alibaba invests $100 mln in luxury-focused Mei.com", Market Watch, July 08, 2015, © MarketWatch, Inc.
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L'Oreal Agrees To Connect Yichang Factory To Hydropower

July 2, 2015: 12:00 AM EST
L'Oreal signed an investment deal to expand and connect to hydropower its Yichang plant in China. Part of the strategic agreement between the company and the Yichang government, the project will help L'Oreal's factory to use clean and renewable energy. By end of 2015, the Yichang plant will become the company's first factory in Asia-Pacific to become carbon-footprint neutral. One of the company's most sustainable factories, the Yichang plant has reduced CO2 emissions by 45 percent from 2005 to 2014.
"L’Oeal Yichang plant in China to reach carbon footprint neutrality in 2015", L’Oreal, July 02, 2015, © L’Oréal
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Estee Lauder Cuts Prices In China In Support Of Government's Efforts To Promote Local Consumption

June 23, 2015: 12:00 AM EST
Estee Lauder Cos. Inc. announced it will reduce prices of certain brands in China effective July 1, 2015. Made in response to China's decision to lower import duties on cosmetics and other products to help promote domestic spending, the repricing move covers some of the company's bestselling skincare products. Brands covered include Estee Lauder, Clinique, Origins, and Lab Series.
Molly Prior , "Estee Lauder Cutting Prices in China", WWD.com, June 23, 2015, © Fairchild Fashion Media
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China's Prestige Personal Care Buyers Buy Online, Study Reveals

June 22, 2015: 12:00 AM EST
In China, 68 percent of consumers buy prestige personal care products online, according to market research firm Bomoda. Data from the report “China Prestige Beauty Blueprint” revealed about 80 percent of consumers have bought beauty products from overseas; however, around 70 percent said they use local online stores. Also, the average buyer of prestige beauty products is 31.9 years old with annual household income at $72,540. Mostly women, these consumers have full-time job, married, and 51 percent of them living in Tier 1 cities, such as Shanghai, Beijing, and Guangzhou.
Jen King, "Lancome, Estee Lauder among best known beauty brands in China: report", Luxury Daily, June 22, 2015, © Napean LLC
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Unilever Launches Online Store On JD.com's E-commerce Platform

June 15, 2015: 12:00 AM EST
Unilever plans to launch a flagship store on China's online direct sales company JD.com, Inc.'s JD Worldwide e-commerce platform. Coinciding with JD.com's major anniversary sale, the launch of the flagship store will bring some of Unilever's global brands to Chinese consumers for the first time. Brands to be featured include Dove, Ponds, Vaseline, and Lux.
"Unilever Launches Flagship Store on JD.com's Cross-Border E-Commerce Platform", GLOBE NEWSWIRE , June 15, 2015, © GlobeNewswire, Inc.
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Chinese Luxury Goods Brands Grew Faster Than Foreign Counterparts, DTT's 2015 Report Shows

June 15, 2015: 12:00 AM EST
China's luxury goods companies grew 33.4 percent, significantly outpacing their foreign rivals, according to the “2015 Global Powers of Luxury Goods” report by Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu. Data from the report revealed similar companies in the United States grew 9.4 percent, while UK brands posted 11.1 percent during the period. Of the top 100 fastest-growing luxury-goods companies, seven came from Hong Kong and China, and accounted for as much as 11.3 percent of the total sales. Leading sellers of luxury goods include LVMH Moet Hennessy-Louis Vuitton from France, with $21.76 billion in sales, followed by Swiss company Compagnie Financiere Richemont in second place and The Estee Lauder Companies Inc. from the United States, in third.
Nisha Ramchandani , "China luxury-goods firms growing fastest globally", Asia One, June 15, 2015, © Singapore Press Holdings Ltd . Co.
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China's Lower Tariff Rates Fail To Boost Local Consumer Spending

May 31, 2015: 12:00 AM EST
China's decision to cut tariff rates is not likely to result in significantly lower prices for imported consumer goods, according to Reuters. Effective on June 1, 2015, the government's move aims to stimulate domestic consumption and boost economic growth. Accounting for more than half of China's GDP growth, private consumption in the country is a laggard compared with levels in other countries, such as the United States. Retail prices of imported goods in China are about 40 percent higher than those in other countries, prompting Chinese tourists to shop for such items when they travel abroad.
"China import tax cuts no remedy for retail slowdown", Reuters, May 31, 2015, © Thomson Reuters
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Walmart China Tests Comprehensive O2O E-Commerce Platform

May 30, 2015: 12:00 AM EST
Walmart hopes to boost sales performance in China by making it very easy for smartphone customers to shop, select, pay for and pick up purchases in stores using a comprehensive “Walmart to Go” O2O (“online to offline”) e-commerce platform. The pilot program is being tested in 23 stores in the city of Shenzhen, just north of Hong Kong in Guangdong Province. Using either an iOS or Android smartphone app, shoppers can access more than 10,000 products, including fresh/dairy/frozen, grocery, health, beauty and household chemical items. Walmart China CEO Sean Clarke said the O2O program will make Walmart “the most trusted omni-channel retailer in China.”
Yoko Wang, "Walmart launches Hypermarket O2O platform 'Walmart To Go' in China", Enterprise Innovation, May 30, 2015, © Questex Asia Ltd.
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Estee Lauder Cuts Prices Of Imported Products In China

May 28, 2015: 12:00 AM EST
Estee Lauder Companies said it will cut the prices of its products in China, in support of the government's move to lower import tariffs. Although the import tariff cut is not expected to have a significant impact on retail prices, the company said it believes the new policy will help promote domestic consumption. L'Oreal SA also announced plans to reduce prices of imported products in the country.
Yang Jing , "Estee Lauder announces mainland price cuts following government’s import tariff reduction", Global Times, May 28, 2015, © Global Times
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Kao Opens Shanghai Plant For Making Shampoo And Cosmetics Ingredients

May 28, 2015: 12:00 AM EST
Kao invested 5 billion yen to build a manufacturing plant in Shanghai, which will produce key ingredients for shampoo and cosmetics. Bringing Kao's chemical production plants in China to a total of three, the facility will produce ingredients aimed at the market for environment-friendly products. With a total production area of 83,000sq m, the factory will help Kao's product development efforts for the China market.
Michelle Yeomans, "Kao further invests in Shanghai market", Cosmetics Design , May 28, 2015, © William Reed Business Media SAS
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