Chinese Whispers: Digital Laggard Celine Starts to Sell Online in Asia, and More

In “Chinese Whispers,” we share the biggest news stories about the luxury industry in China that have yet to make it into the English language. In this week’s edition, we discuss:

  • Celine‘s foray into e-commerce sales in Asia
  • Isabel Marant’s collaboration with Alibaba’s Luxury Pavilion
  •’s partnership with short-video sites for the “618” shopping festival promotion

1. Celine launches e-commerce service across Asia – Jiemian

The French luxury brand Celine recently unveiled its e-commerce service in Asia, which covers countries from China and Singapore to Japan, according to the Chinese news site Jiemian. The move signals that the brand has ramped up its efforts to reach more customers in the region.

In China, which is arguably the most important marketplace for luxury brands, the availability of e-commerce service is crucial for brands that want to connect with consumers residing in lower-tier cities. Celine’s new e-commerce site offers a full range of items like ready-to-wear, footwear, handbags, and accessories. Currently, however, the site only supports pre-orders and product tracking.

Isabel Marant

The niche French designer brand Isabel Marant opened a flagship store on Luxury Pavilion of Alibaba. Photo: Shutterstock

2. The niche French brand Isabel Marant opens a store on Alibaba – Alizila

This week, the niche French designer brand Isabel Marant opened a flagship store on Luxury Pavilion, Alibaba’s exclusive luxury portal for high-end fashion brands. The French label unveiled 42 exclusive items on the platform to celebrate the partnership.

Since its inception in mid-2017, Luxury Pavilion has convinced a slew of luxury brands such as Loewe and Valentino to come on board. The platform is currently home to over 700 million Chinese users with high purchasing power.


Short-video platforms like Douyin will collaborate with to promote the upcoming “618” shopping festival. Photo: Shutterstock

3. taps into the power of Chinese short-video apps to promote its annual shopping festival – Caijing

Less than one month away from’s annual shopping festival “618,” which is a counterpart to the Singles’ Day created by JD’s rival Alibaba, the Chinese tech company announced it would team up with the country’s top short-video sites Douyin and Kuaishou for this year’s promotion. will collaborate with merchants to place creative content on the two platforms, which aim to spark viewers’ shopping interest and ultimately direct them to place orders on the site. In the Chinese e-commerce landscape, the ability to enrich and entertain consumers’ shopping journeys has become increasingly significant for e-commerce players that hope to lock in sales.


News, Tech