Chinese Whispers: Chanel Releases Watch Campaign on Douyin, and More

In “Chinese Whispers”, we share the biggest news stories about the luxury industry in China that haven’t yet made it into the English language.

In this week’s edition, we discuss:

  • Chanel’s new ad campaign on China’s hottest short video site, Douyin,
  • Fosun International and Shandong Ruyi Group are reportedly potential buyers of Acne Studio, and
  • Bvlgari CEO on being a champion of e-commerce in today’s digital world.

1. Chanel launched a campaign for J12 watch collection on Douyin – SocialBeta

French luxury giant Chanel became the latest high-end brand to set up a presence on Douyin, the trendiest, millennial-focused short video social site in China. From July 12 to 23, a total of 12 short videos about Chanel’s J12 watch will be released on Douyin’s special channel.


Over the past couple of months, there’s been a lot of hype about Douyin. The app, launched in September 2016, took off in 2017 – gaining over 100 million users within a year, becoming the number two ranked app overall in the Apple Chinese App store, and reaching first in the video/photo category. Luxury brands including Michael Kors and Dior have used the platform for online marketing campaigns before.

Photo: Acne Studios' official site

Photo: Acne Studios’ official site

2. Two Chinese companies are likely to acquire hip Swedish brand Acne Studios – Jiemian

Fosun International (the Chinese company that owns La Perla, Lanvin and Club Med) and Shandong Ruyi Group (the Chinese firm that operates Sandro and Maje), are reportedly showing interest in acquiring Acne Studios. The Swedish label is one of the most popular fashion brands on the internet for young consumers.


As China’s interest in fashion and luxury increases, an increasing number of Chinese companies have started to invest in the sector. Fosun and Shandong Ruyi are two of the most active Chinese companies pouring money into the global luxury and fashion industries.

Photo: LVMH

Photo: LVMH

3. An exclusive interview with Jean-Christophe Babin, Global CEO of Bvlgari –

“For today’s luxury brands, it is essential to be a champion of e-commerce,” said Jean-Christophe Babin, Global CEO of Bvlgari, during an exclusive interview with Chinese fashion site Babin believes luxury e-commerce services should allow customers to access all kinds of brands’ offerings – from anywhere and at anytime. However, he also emphasized that luxury brands should not pursue technology “for the sake of technology”, but use it as a way to enhance digitalization.


In China, Bvlgari is one of the international brands leading the digitalization of luxury, with a highly sophisticated digital strategy. This year, it was the second best luxury brand in terms of digital capability, according to a new report by the New York-based data intelligence company Gartner L2.