China is the second latest economy in the world, every significant brand's future is impacted by its growth (or collapse!); but who's got the time?! Enjoy these China bites that will make you look like a keen China branding observer. Today's round-up: Lenovo ousts HP, Diageo becomes Diabaijiu, auto downshift, Looper's China product placement, mocking the iPhone 5 and more.
Can Apple win over China?
"You may think you know the story of Apple in China — how the men and women who make iPods and iPhones for Apple partner Foxconn labor under punishing conditions. But there's another Apple Goes to China story, and this one is the tale of an underdog — yes, underdog — that has the potential to unlock billions and billions of dollars in additional revenue, just by eking out market share gains in core products such as smartphones and PCs. If you think Apple, the most valuable company in the world, with a market cap of nearly $600 billion, has nowhere to go but down, we humbly suggest you turn your gaze to the East." [Fortune]
Related Reading: China Expected to be Apple’s Biggest Market for iPad mini
How a Downshift in China Hurts GM, VW and Toyota
"China has about 95 different automotive brands, (J.D. Power analyst John Humphrey) says. All together, domestic and foreign auto makers have the capacity to build 28.5 million cars and commercial vehicles in China – about 9 million more than customers are likely to buy this year. The country’s 48 domestic car makers together account for 30% of the passenger vehicle market, and their brands are on track to average annual sales this year of about 87,500 cars a piece. That’s “a paltry number by industry standards,” says Humphrey." [Wall Street Journal]
Lenovo Ends HP’s Reign as Top PC Maker
"Lenovo’s climb has been powered by hardware acquisitions and income growth in its home market, the largest for PCs and the world’s most-populous nation. Market-share gains have fueled profit growth exceeding 25 percent for 12 straight quarters. Chief Executive Officer Yang Yuanqing said in August that he won’t stop with a lead in PCs and wants to dominate in mobile devices as well." [Bloomberg]
A British man keen on the baijiu
"The global liquor giant Diageo, Swellfun's largest single shareholder, has launched Shui Jing Fang baijiu in Britain through supermarkets and Chinese restaurants and plans to introduce the brand elsewhere in Europe, including Germany, Belgium and the Netherlands. 'Diageo has built our distribution network into 40 duty-free shops at international airports in regions like the US, Europe and Australia, and all are reporting stronger sales growth,' Macpherson says." [China Daily]
Chinese Entrepreneur Gives Free Geely Cars To Owners Of Japanese Vehicles Destroyed During Diaoyu Island Protests – Or Does He?
"Huangpu Renewable Resources CEO Chen Guangbiao held an extraordinary promotional activity yesterday: he gave away 43 cars, each reportedly worth 128,000 yuan (that’s 5.5 million yuan total, or $830,000), to former owners of Japanese cars that got destroyed during last month’s Diaoyu Island protests. All people had to do to qualify for their free Geely — which is Chinese made, of course — was follow Chen on Sina Weibo, and the lucky winners were told to converge at Huangpu’s courtyard yesterday. Apparently…" [Beijing Creme]
Related Reading: Your new car is made in China!
Bentley China Sales Surge 26% In First Nine Months Of 2012
As Kevin Rose, Bentley’s Member of the Board for Sales, Marketing and Aftersales of the latest earnings report, 'Sales have been driven by new model introductions including the Continental GT and GTC V8 which are now arriving with customers. In addition we have seen a very robust performance from our four door vehicles with Mulsanne deliveries up by over 15 percent and Flying Spur sales up by 5 percent.'" [Jing Daily]
Napa Winegrowers Win Brand Protection in China as Exports Grow
"Californian wineries have increased their sales effort in China in the past four years since the Beijing Olympic Games, tapping into the country’s affluent growing middle-class. The state’s exports to China jumped more than 40 percent last year.
The agreement applies to wines sold in the Chinese mainland for now, with Hong Kong and Macau subject to separate laws." [Bloomberg]
Related Reading: China wine imports: Will the market shrink in 2012?
Pandering Misfire: Sino-Centric “Looper” Lesson for Hollywood Producers
"Indeed, reviews of Looper in China reflect this lukewarm reception. While the movie sits pretty with a whopping 94% on Rotten Tomatoes, it has not fared as well among netizen reviewers in China, earning only 6.9 points out of 10 on Douban.com, a popular review site, with over 22,000 ratings. (By way of comparison, the sci-fi blockbuster Inception has 9.2 points on Douban.)" [Tea Leaf Nation]
Related Reading: 007's Skyfall Highlights Hollywood's Hottest Product Placement: China
Watch The Chinese Make Fun of iPhone 5 by Introducing iPhone 20s [MIC Gadget]
At top, an moment from the Chengdu Culture Show that almost certainly was not licensed by Disney.