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Gaining a Supply Chain Edge

Chinese Consumers Crave 'Affordable Luxury' in Apparel & Accessories

With China currently boasting the #1 apparel and #2 accessory markets in the world, there's no doubt that the fashion industry there is enjoying an explosive phase.

In fact, Michael Zakkour, a principal at Technomic Asia (a wholly owned subsidiary of Tompkins International) recently spoke at a Fashion Institute of Technology event in New York about China consumers' growing need for luxury and "affordable luxury" brands.

Michael noted in his presentation that many China consumers have the desire to show to others they are living the good life now, hence the affordable luxury factor. And this market is increasingly driven by young females. China's growing middle and upper middle class -- with 300 million consumers -- is also driving the growth in the luxury goods market and the need for more "affordable luxury."

So with all these consumer preference changes, the modern supply chain of China is now the nexus of China. While Chinese consumers only spent $100 each on clothing in 2009, they are poised to spend much more now, especially for affordable luxury. Chinese consumers love for brands is prevalent in Shanghai and Beijing, and the opportunities and new territory is in the interior of China.

Likewise, Michael comments in this China Business Blog and Podcast about the essential research that is necessary before entering China with your product line or marketing strategy. He also lists some fun factoids to keep in mind.

China's different markets and consumer preferences need to be well understood before developing a business or entry strategy. Companies that want to win a bigger share of this growing market need to be aggressive -- but opportunity is well worth the risk.

Michael once again shared his insights on China's consumer retail, and fashion markets and trends at a well-known conference in New York City. I guess this shows that business leaders are just as hungry for information on Asia business strategies as the Chinese consumers are for finer apparel and accessories.

Tompkins Inc.

TAGS: Supply Chain
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