Chinese retailers tipped for Aussie entry

Chinese retailers are being tipped to follow their European and US counterparts and set up shop in Australia.

Australia has 39 of the world’s top 250 retailers in its shopping malls and on its high streets, half of which hail from the US.

And while Chinese retailers make up nine of the world’s top 250, none have opened stores in Australia, according to Deloitte’s 2016 Global Powers of Retailing report.

Deloitte spokesman David White said while most products sold in Australia are manufactured in China, Chinese retailers were yet to enter the market directly.

But he expects this to change in the not so distant future.

“The growth in the middle classes in China is already prompting a surge in consumer demand and Chinese developed brands,” Mr White said.

“It is only a matter of time before we see these emerging retailers expanding their businesses more globally, including Australia.”

He said Australia’s relatively stable economy, significant discretionary spend and strong consumer demand for international brands and products makes it an attractive market for overseas retailers.

“We can expect further disruption in the market with new (international) entrants highly likely,” he said.

“Australian retailers will need to be vigilant in ensuring they are differentiating themselves from their competitors.”

A Deloitte survey of Aussie retailers found two thirds believed foreign-owned retailers were their greatest future competition.

This comes after Spanish multi-national clothing company Inditex brought another of its brands, Zara Home, to Australia last year to capitalise on the strong demand for household goods.

Meanwhile, French cosmetics chain Sephora and US retailer Williams-Sonoma continue to expand in Australia, along with Swedish retail giant H&M.



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