China News Brief
    April 18, 2024

    Valentino partners with immersive theater experience Sleep No More, Shanghai, and beauty brands flock to Tmall.
    Photo: Valentino

    VW, Xpeng team up to slash EV costs#

    Volkswagen and Xpeng have teamed up to develop  a new China Electrical Architecture (CEA) for affordable electric vehicles in China. This collaboration aims to introduce locally made VW-branded EVs by 2026, reducing costs by 40% compared to current platforms. By streamlining control units and centralizing electronics management, they aim to compete effectively in China’s EV market, focusing on entry- and mid-level segments.

    Beauty brands flock to Tmall Global#

    According to data released  today by Tmall Global, the number of international beauty brands joining Tmall Global increased by 55% in the first quarter of 2024 compared to the same period last year. Among them, Europe and South Korea were the two regions with the fastest growth in the number of international beauty brands in the first quarter, with the number of European beauty brands increasing by 150% compared to the same period last year, and South Korea increasing by 56% compared to last year.

    Le Labo readies 3rd Shanghai store#

    Le Labo is about to open  its third store in Shanghai at the Fairmont Peace Hotel, with construction currently underway. According to the brand’s official WeChat mini-program, Le Labo has already established four stores in mainland China, located in Shanghai, Beijing, and Shenzhen.

    Casadei debuts on Tmall#

    Italian luxury footwear brand Casadei this week debuted  on Tmall, marking a significant milestone in the label’s expansion into the dynamic Chinese market. Arianna Casadei, CEO of Casadei, said: “This partnership with Tmall will give us the opportunity to enter the Chinese market with an authorized and customized e-commerce experience. Chinese buyers are the most important supporters of the luxury global market. Tmall will help us engage and reach more of them.”

    Xiaohongshu report reveals perfume trends#

    Xiaohongshu teamed up with Kantar China to release  the Discovering Fragrances - 2024 Perfume Trends White Paper yesterday. The report reveals that perfume users are getting younger and exhibiting high-frequency consumption patterns, with 50% aged under 30 years. Moreover, 86% of perfume users simultaneously use three to four other fragrance products. The fragrance interest community on Xiaohongshu covers over 65 million individuals, with users showing a mature mindset, and the proportion of male users is increasing annually.

    Valentino issues ‘Siren’ call#

    Valentino is collaborating  once again with Sleep No More, Shanghai, the immersive theatrical masterpiece jointly produced by Punchdrunk and SMG Live Shanghai Performing Arts Group, presenting a new special performance titled Siren as part of its fashion partnership, interpreting the Valentino Spring/Summer 2024 collection. The two entities boldly merge fashion and theater, garments and body movements, conveying an ideological reflection through fashion while celebrating the beauty of women and advocating for bodily freedom. Inspired by the enchanting sirens of Greek mythology, Siren unveils a new dimension of feminine power and beauty.

    Lower-tier cities receive Labor Day travel boost#

    Ctrip released  the 2024 Labor Day Holiday Tourism Trends Insight Report on Tuesday. The findings indicate medium and long-distance travel during the Labor Day holiday was consumers’ focus, with domestic long-distance travel orders accounting for 56% of the total. Additionally, significant growth in domestic tourism, particularly in fourth-tier cities and below, especially in county-level tourism, boosted volume. Data shows that hotel booking orders in county-level markets during the Labor Day holiday increased 68% YoY, and scenic spot ticket orders increased by 151%, with growth rates outpacing the national average.

    Burberry wraps up expo appearance#

    Burberry exhibited  at the fourth China International Consumer Products Expo (April 13 to 18), its fourth consecutive year participating in the event. At this year’s exhibition, Burberry showcased several classic trench coats alongside a selection of archive pieces and new season products, offering a retrospective of the brand’s legendary history and curated designs. The event featured Burberry’s latest designs, including new season apparel, handbags, and footwear collections.

    Gucci unveils ‘Ancora’ furniture#

    Gucci collaborated with Milan creative agency P:S founder Michela Pelizzari to curate  Design Ancora at Milan Design Week 2024, presenting five special edition designs inspired by Creative Director Sabato de Sarno’s vision, using Gucci’s classic red color. The collection includes a sofa, a royal chair, a drawer cabinet, a carpet, and a vase, paying homage to the golden age of Italian design. These pieces will be exhibited at the flagship store on Via Montenapoleone through Sunday.