A picture taken 4 years was updated on Weibo.com (China’s Twitter), and up to today, it’s been forwarded 17,442 times and 3,276 comments has been made. It was taken when Louis Vuitton established its first outlet store in Nanjing, capital city in Jiangsu Province. The moral behind this picture is: Chinese people have gone crazy for luxury, and brands like Louis Vuitton is like veggies in a bazaar (affordable to all of us).
Statistics shows that, Chanel Beijing has generated a yearly revenue of 600 million USD from a single outlet store in Beijing, and the same is true with Louis Vuitton. Hong Kong, however, boasts the biggest sales revenue globally on a yearly basis, that’s 6 billion USD! The total sales of luxury products reached US$ 10.7 billion in 2010, 1/4 of the global market.
Here are some of the most desirable brands that people want the most in China, according to a toll: Louis Vuitton (95% of the candidates want it), Gucci (85%), Rolex (85%), Channel (80%), Prada (80%), Armani (75%), Dior (70%), Hermes (65%), D&G (60%), BMW (50%), to name the top 10. There are 2 fundamental reasons why people are so brandaholic in China:
1st, China has successfully topped Japan and become the world second largest economy. Despite the inflation that plagued the world, China still has a balanced growth in economic development. People are accumulating great wealth from high-tech based businesses like e-commerce, just to name one distinctive example. A larger volume of USDs and Euroes are flowing into China’s market, and eventually into Chinese people’s pocket. They have a greater power to purchase luxury products.
2nd, luxury brands symbolize their distinguished social status. In China, almost every celebrity has at least one Hermes Birkin, or a Patek Philippe watch, and iPhone is like a street-phone that you can see it everywhere you go. The Chinese people used to feel inferior after its door was bombed open by Western artillery, and sovereignty was partially lost. With hundreds of years of material depression, the Chinese feel now a great sense of pride, once they gain wealth through constant efforts. However, this can get into vicious competition between the rich and the not-so-rich, and the sole result is more and more people are buying luxury products to show off their wealth.
However, somehow, the trend for brands or brandaholic is a bubble that may burst anytime anywhere, without giving you a clue. Basically what I intended to say is, you need to be cautious because knowing where you stand is more important than following a tide blindly, and always ask yourself this question: is it what you really want?