Even though the emergence of Chinese luxury brand is considered a potential risk in the industry, the Walpole 2005 meeting entirely dedicated to this topic concluded that they would not enter the global market soon. In fact, they are still quite absent in France, where only Shanghai Tang and Qeelin have shyly found their small corners. How can Chinese luxury brands potentially reach the saturated French market?
First, we will focus on the difficulties for Chinese luxury brands to enter the French market. Then, we will study further the qualities of current Chinese luxury brands to better estimate their potential and finally, we will focus on the evolutions required for them to come in the French market.
First of all, people usually link luxury to the Occident, and more especially to France and Italy, which seem to have the monopoly in the sector. If we look at the top 15 of luxury brands in 2008, one is from the USA, one is from the United Kingdom, two are from Switzerland, five are French and six are Italians. These countries have had the monopoly of the luxury industry for years and luxury is not a market that evolves quickly at all.
One of the determinants of luxury we have seen in class was "outstanding brand image". Entering the market for any brand is a challenge. And in addition of not having a luxury Chinese brand renowned worldwide, China is even not considered as a country made to produce luxury.
[...] Qualities of Chinese luxury brands that will facilitate entry into the French market Strong tradition and ancient History This is among the determinants of luxury, and it is totally representing China as much as the other countries currently leading the luxury market. Cultural roots in China are even more present than in Occident. Actually, the traditional knowledge is a real strength to produce luxury brands. The new Chinese brands, as Shanghai Tang for example, work on giving a new reputation to the “made in China” in order to link it with the Chinese roots, the great know-how appreciated in handcrafted products and the use of noble materials. [...]
[...] All of that is among determinants of luxury, and good elements to bring something new to compete against the cashmere and the pashmina. Actually, this example introduces the fact that China is among the countries with the most natural resources for fine materials. They are numerous, but they are also very various: porcelain, bronze, cashmere, silk And when the resources come from your own country and were exploited by your ancestors, you can afford to be the master of using them the best possible way, as required to produce luxury. [...]
[...] The new Chinese luxury brand . Retrieved July 2011 from Influencia.net: http://www.influencia.net/fr/actualites1/nouvelle- marque-chinoise-luxe,31,1075.html What are the strategies of large groups for a "Made in China" luxury brand? (2011, May 4). Retrieved July 2011 from Luxe 2.0 : http://luxe20.wordpress.com/category/chine/ Vulser, N. (2010, October 22). Chinese luxury brands display their international ambitions. [...]
[...] Entering the market for any brand is a challenge. And in addition of not having a luxury Chinese brand renowned worldwide, China is not even considered as a country made to produce luxury. Perception of luxury and perception of Chinese products The country suffers from a reputation which is totally at the opposite of the one required for luxury. Chinese products in France are often referred as cheap products that break easily, with very low quality, produced for the mass market. [...]
[...] The emergence of Chinese natural upmarket products in France, through the brand Herborist distributed by Sephora for instance, is the beginning of the evolution of Chinese products sold in France that could make the image of the country evolve. It is not yet luxury, but it is kind of the closest thing to it. Also, brand names in luxury often come from creators' names so when we hear about Chinese creators, like the example of the artistic directors of Cacharel, it can be seen as the beginning of building an international reputation. On the economic side, China is developing very quickly in all the sectors. [...]
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