China News Brief
    May 07, 2024

    Met Gala lights up Chinese socials; Kering’s ‘Of Granite and Dreams’ hits Chinese bookshelves; Louis Vuitton’s jewelry pops up across China.
    Blackpink's Jennie Kim attends the 2024 Costume Institute Benefit for Sleeping Beauties: Reawakening Fashion at The Metropolitan Museum of Art on May 6, 2024 in New York City. Photo: Getty Images

    Met Gala lights up Chinese socials#

    The 2024 Met Gala, themed The Garden of Time, took place  yesterday in the US, inspired by J.G. Ballard’s 1962 short story. The event, co-chaired by Loewe’s Jonathan Anderson and TikTok CEO Shou Zi Chew, along with stars like Bad Bunny, Jennifer Lopez, Zendaya, and Chris Hemsworth, celebrated the ephemeral nature of beauty. Concurrently, the Met’s Costume Institute’s annual exhibition, Sleeping Beauties: Reawakening Fashion, featured about 250 historical fashion pieces, exploring the theme of rediscovering past treasures. The event has gained significant attention on Weibo, accumulating over 22.96 million views under the hashtag #MetGala2024.

    Kering’s ‘Of Granite and Dreams’ hits Chinese bookshelves#

    The Chinese edition  of Kering: Of Granite and Dreams, written by French corporate history expert Tristan Gaston-Breton to mark the conglomerate’s diamond jubilee, was recently released. The book charts the group’s journey from a small timber trading business established by François Pinault in 1962 in Rennes, France, to becoming a titan of the luxury industry through extensive archives and historical images.

    Louis Vuitton’s jewelry pops up across China#

    Louis Vuitton is operating  a Blossom jewelry pop-up at Shanghai IFC Mall from May 1 to May 20, 2024. The space will also appear in Shenzhen, Wuxi, Xiamen, and Hefei. The pop-up features Louis Vuitton’s jewelry and watches, especially the full Color Blossom series. A new material, Amazonite, has been introduced to the series, adding a fresh, translucent elegance that enhances the vibrant colors of the jewelry.

    New Brooks Running CEO bets big on China#

    Dan Sheridan has officially taken over  as the new CEO of Brooks Running, a US running shoe brand under Berkshire Hathaway. Sheridan announced that Brooks Running plans to open its first store in Shanghai this fall, with the possibility of more stores to follow. He highlighted China as one of the top 10 markets for running participation and a crucial part of the brand’s 30 to 50-year strategy. Currently, 85 percent of the company’s revenue comes from the US, and it primarily targets the high-performance running shoe market.

    Vicky Chen, Song Weilong ignite romance in Gucci’s 520 Day ad#

    In anticipation of 520 Day, one of China’s annual occasions dedicated to love and romance, Gucci  has teamed up with actress and brand ambassador Mando-pop singer Vicky Chen and actor Song Weilong to present a new advertisement, titled Love Takes Off Again. Set against a cinematic backdrop, Chen and Song depict the beautiful moment of meeting among a crowd.

    Canada Goose’s releases comfy coords#

    Canada Goose is offering up  a romantic selection for 520 Day, featuring comfortable apparel, functional travel wear, and footwear to foster closeness and express love. The women’s Broadview T-shirt is crafted from soft, breathable cotton in gentle colors, while the men’s Emersen T-shirt combines comfort with a classic, logo-design fit.

    Puig in record-breaking IPO#

    Spanish beauty group Puig officially went public  on the Madrid Stock Exchange on May 3. This IPO is the largest in Spain since 2015 and the largest in Europe this year. Currently, Puig’s market capitalization is around $15.26 billion (14 billion euros), surpassing Natura&Co, Coty, and Shiseido. After going public, the Puig family retains 71.7% ownership and 92.5% of the voting rights in the board. In 2023, Puig’s sales grew 19% YoY to a record $4.69 billion (4.3 billion euros), with EBITDA increasing by 33% to $926.5 million (850 million euros).

    Shanghai coffee festival spotlights $37B industry#

    The Shanghai International Coffee Culture Festival took place  April 30 to May 1. The event underscores China’s thriving coffee industry, which reached $37.16 billion (265.4 billion RMB) last year with Shanghai at the forefront, home to over 9,553 coffee shops. Average annual consumption per capita has risen to 16.74 cups, nearly double the nine cups per capita in 2016. The festival highlights global and local brands, innovative campaigns, and market expansions like Starbucks’ addition of 118 new outlets. The event also showcased unique product offerings like Maotai-flavored latte.

    Mainland tourists in Hong Kong embrace thrift#

    During China’s Labor Day holiday, a shift was noted among mainland Chinese tourists  in Hong Kong, who are now favoring economical self-guided walking tours and staying overnight in cheaper Shenzhen rather than engaging in luxury shopping. This trend is driven by a slower economic recovery in mainland China, leading to more cautious spending habits. The rise in Hong Kong residents traveling to the mainland for cheaper options has also impacted local businesses, with a noted 10% drop in the catering sector during the holiday. This reflects a broader trend towards cost-consciousness and practicality among tourists post-pandemic.

    China leads Thailand’s tourism revival#

    The Tourism Authority of Thailand announced  on Sunday that in the first four months of this year, the country received over 12 million foreign tourists. From January 1 to April 30, 12,127,447 foreign tourists entered Thailand, an increase of 143% compared to the same period last year. The countries with the most tourists visiting Thailand in the first four months were China (2,351,909), followed by Malaysia (1,569,856), and Russia (767,210). The Tourism Authority of Thailand predicts that approximately 8.27 million foreign tourists will enter Thailand in the second quarter of this year, an increase of 29% compared to the same period last year, generating approximately 367.9 billion Thai Baht ($12.26 billion) in revenue, a 25% increase from the same period last year.