Inside Retail Asia breaking news, supplier information, product launches and consumer campaigns in China.

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CES launches Asia expo

The world’s largest consumer electronics show organisers are to launch a second event in Asia in May. CES, the launchpad of a vast array of high tech gadgets in Las Vegas in early January each year, will now have a linked event in Shanghai, with the inaugural show to be held on May 25-27. CES Asia is a joint venture between US based Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) and Intex Shanghai, a prominent producer of international tradeshows in China. The show will be held at the Shanghai N…

Zara opens Shanghai flagship

Zara has opened a flagship store on Shanghai’s busiest shopping street Nanjing East Rd. The new store has a commercial space of more than 2000 sqm spread over four floors and showcases Zara’s new store design concept. This flagship will include all of Zara’s collections – womenswear, menswear and kidswear. The new store has been fully renovated and features an elegant facade which combines classic pillars with metallic meshing, where full height window displays to draw the attention of p…

Forever 21 opens Beijing store

American fast fashion brand Forever 21 has opened its second store in China’s capital city,  Beijing. The 2400 sqft store is located in the Livat Xihongmen Shopping Centre, covering two floors. It stocks women’s and men’s clothing, accessories, underwear and shoes. The Californian brand says local Chinese consumers can experience a broader fashion offer in a new shopping environment. The new store will also introduce the brand’s new 21Men and F21 Red labels into China for the fir…

Costco impresses with China debut

US warehouse club retailer Costco has made an impressive debut in China, selling online through Alibaba. But in a detailed analysis, Forbes has warns that while the retail giant’s first experience with the Chinese retail market has been “exceptionally good”, a bigger issue will be how the company plans its expansion from here on. Alibaba has revealed it achieved US$6.4 million in revenues from Costco in its first month online with Tmall – and that with a very limited stock range comp…

China to allow medicine sales online

China’s government is about to open the way for pharmaceuticals to be sold online. A law change may be enacted as early as this month, clearing the way for major retailers like Alibaba and Walmart to start dispensing prescriptions over the internet. Reuters reports that the China Food and Drug Administration (CFDA) is finalising a list of prescription medicines which will be approved for online sale. “The policy will be released in January or February and the CFDA is actively working …

Apple debuts in central China

Tech giant Apple has opened its first store in central China, taking its network in the mainland to 13. The new store, in Henan Province, opened at the weekend in a shopping mall in downtown Zhengzhou, the provincial capital. Apple says the opening marks an important step in the roll out of Apple’s retail stores in China, as the city is also home to Foxconn, Apple’s main supplier. China is already Apple’s largest market and the company sees a significant share of its global growth com…

Chinese embrace Pasta Mania

Singapore’s largest Italian restaurant chain, PastaMania is ramping up its Chian store rollout. The chain is set to open inside Shanghai’s Raffles City Mall in downtown Huangpu District, Renming Guangchang, on February 1. Operated by Singapore-based Commonwealth Capital Group, this is the latest store within a 13-month period to expand the PastaMania footprints in Shanghai. The current flagship stores are located at strategic locations in Metro-city Mall, Xujiahui and Super Brand Mall,…

China helps Apple set app record

Consumers worldwide helped Apple set a new record for sales on its online App store in the first week of January: nearly US$500,000,000. And New Year’s Day 2015 marked the single biggest day ever in its App Store sales history. These milestones follow a record-breaking 2014, in which billings rose 50 per cent and apps generated over $10 billion in revenue for developers. To date, App Store developers have earned a cumulative $25 billion from the sale of apps and games. The introduction of i…

Metro opens no 81 in China

Cash & carry retailer Metro has opened its 81st China hypermarket – its third in Jiujiang. “Jiujiang is not only an important Chinese inland port, but also a famous tourist city. The city offers great potential for our Cash & Carry business,” said Jeroen de Groot, president of Metro China. “With the opening of our Jiujiang store, we are now able to serve local professional customers and independent businesses. We will not only provide quality, safe and reliable product offering…

Chow Tai Fook sales slump 10%

Hong Kong’s weakening luxury sales market saw jeweller Chow Tai Fook’s retail sales fall 10 per cent in the third quarter. Compared to the same period last year, the group’s same store sales of gem-set jewellery fell 12 per cent and of gold products by 21 per cent, although this was coming off the ‘gold rush’ which saw significant volumes of gold being traded in the preceding year. “The decrease in the same store sales growth of gem-set jewellery was mainly due to the weak cons…

Yum! to franchise Pizza Huts in China

US corporate QSR operator Yum! Brands says it will start selling Pizza Hut franchises across China. According to a report in China Retail News franchisees will be invited to take over existing restaurants rather than open new ones. This course is more likely to lead to to successful financial returns for the franchisees due to an established customer base and management. Site selection, recruitment and training will thus not be required. According to the report, franchisees will not be abl…

China’s online New Year hot spots

After analysing trends in China’s burgeoning online shopping market in 2014, Amazon China has nominated five core trends it expects to see in the nation this year. Last year, Amazon said four key trends stood out. Firstly, China’s online shoppers were predominantly young (80 per cent under 35), educated (90 per cent had a bachelor’s degree as a minimum) and cashed up (40 per cent earned more than 5000RMB a month (USD$804). Secondly, sales in second and third tier cities boomed, wi…