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finance

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C H I N A’ S C H A M P I O N S The BrandZ Top 10 Most Valuable Chinese Brands 2017

I think the Chinese economy remains very robust. It’s moving from a follower to a leader

Rank 2017

Brand

Category

Brand value 2017 ($m)

Brand value change

Rank 2016

1

Tencent

Technology

106,181

29%

1

2

Alibaba

Retail

58,009

22%

3

3

China Mobile

Telecoms

57,899

1%

2

4

ICBC

Banks

31,482

-8%

4

5

Baidu

Technology

23,886

-11%

5

6

Huawei

Technology

20,383

10%

7

7

China Construction Bank

Banks

18,398

-7%

6

8

Ping An

Insurance

16,463

5%

9

9

Moutai

Alcohol

16,219

41%

13

10

Agricultural Bank of China

Banks

14,848

-9%

8

frictionless. So I think those types of things are amazingly powerful in terms of how you disrupt. BW: Because there is no stopping point for the consumer? DW: Yes, you are already in their ecosystem. BW: You are in there, you are excited. The consumer is talking on social media about a new dress or whatever it is, and she can suddenly buy it without having to think too much about having to go somewhere else? DR: Yes, that’s the frictionless point. The more

friction you have in the system, the more as the consumer you think, “Well, should I or shouldn’t I?” or “I’ll do it a bit later”. The less friction, the more chance you’ll say, “I’ve seen it, I like it, I’ll just go ahead and buy it.” BW: There was some evidence last year that the brands from the BRICS countries generally were slowing. Any evidence of that affecting China itself? DW: I think the Chinese economy remains very

robust. It’s moving from a follower to a leader. The globalizing Chinese brands are not all home appliance brands, or just online gaming brands, electronics, ecommerce. They have a better advantage in globalization because they can take advantage of their technology and set up in 50 or 60 countries simultaneously. They do not have to be big in their own country before going global. They were born global. DR: Yes, five years ago, from all our data and evidence, we would have always said that it would be impossible to be big outside your home market unless you are big inside your home market. Now what we are seeing with some of these Chinese companies is that some of

them are choosing to go global first. So they are saying, “The Chinese market is very difficult, it’s oversaturated, it’s expensive, so actually what we are going to do is export first of all.” Five years ago, we would have said, “Don’t try that strategy because it doesn’t work.” But we are seeing that it does work. BW: China has moved from domestic emulator to global innovator. Has that been reflected in the index? DR: I think it has. When I first started to go

to China 20 years ago, the only thing they wanted to show you at their factories was the accommodation for their staff. Now all they want to show you is their innovation labs. China knows better than most that being the production end of the world is fine in the first stage of transformation but is not sustainable – there are cheaper places to produce now. Now is the era of adding significant value. I think, and I don’t mean this in a pejorative way at all, they are beginning to understand the magic of branding. DW: Overseas awareness of Chinese brands has increased over the past three years from 12% to 19%. Okay, 19% awareness is not high, there is still a long way to go, but it has definitely improved. China’s image has improved from being low-price, low quality, to 45% of Millennials agreeing that Chinese brands are innovative and creative. In Spain, for example, many Millennials said they were very willing to wait 10-15 days to buy cool stuff from China. So that’s absolutely the change. Because of this new generation – this Millennial generation – that is going to give lots of opportunities to brands from fast-growing markets. — Ben Walker is editor of Dialogue Q2 2018 Dialogue

Dialogue Q2 2018  
Dialogue Q2 2018