Three main trends from the CBBC China Business Conference 2013–


1. Urbanisation: Liveable Cities

Around 300 million people have moved into cities over the past twenty years in China and by 2030, more than one billion people will live in Chinese cities. Urbanisation is a major driver of economic growth but also creates many social and environmental challenges. Sustainable cities have been moved to the front of the policy agenda of the government and more awareness has permeated local communities. Issues such as air pollution, food safety scandals, intense traffic congestion and a lack of green space have made this an issue for the everyday consumer. As a result, demand is growing for more sustainable products and healthier lifestyle brands.

*Follow-up post here.

2. Consumer Trends: More Savvy Consumers

Chinese consumers have developed over the past few years and out-grown the mass desire for status brands. With the internet, increase of international travel and more disposable income, the average Chinese consumer has become much more informed about brands. It is estimated that a consumer will spend an average of 2 weeks researching a large purchase before buying and 80% of all purchases will be researched on social media sites. For these reasons, it is imperative that the Chinese global message aligns with the global brand message, acknowledging the sophistication of the new consumer. In addition, local brands that are acutely aware of consumer needs are beginning to challenge some of the more dominant global brands.

*Follow-up post here.

3. Outbound Investment: Chinese Brands Go Global

Many Chinese companies are in the stages of becoming global businesses. Strongly encouraged by the government, many have taken their first step of investing in foreign markets. Due to a disconnect in management practices, legal systems and regulations, some of these brands are partnering with native companies in foreign markets for local operations. It is the access to new markets and varying regions of expertise that inspire collaboration between eastern and western brands.

Look for more detailed posts on each of these trends in the coming week as we explore in-depth the market changing elements of China.