What Happened: On November 5, the fourth China International Import Expo (CIIE) opened at Shanghai’s National Exhibition and Convention Center. Since 2018, the annual CIIE, initiated by the Chinese government, has become a significant platform for facilitating international business and free trade in this continually reopening country. Leading global luxury groups — including LVMH, Kering, Richemont, and Tapestry — as well as beauty conglomerates like L’Oréal and Estée Lauder, have all signed up. Kering (and its houses) are attending for the third consecutive year, while the event will also welcome newcomer Burberry. The show runs until November 10.
The Jing Take: As China makes a greater impact on business post-pandemic, luxury companies have attached greater significance to CIIE. Their participation goes beyond import and export, extending to presenting their innovations and corporate values in response to diversity, sustainability, and a low-carbon economy.
Kering’s elaborate pavilion, The Kering Galaxy — made of a central pillar with its houses orbiting it like planets — will include a selection of iconic and timeless pieces displayed in a museological fashion. The presentation also highlights the brand’s artistic endeavors, such as Women in Motion, which celebrates the influences of women on art and culture (the most recent installment at West Bund championed women’s creativity in dance and choreography).
Another standout is Burberry’s exhibit, a landscape-inspired immersive experience presenting the latest textile and design innovations. It shows off the house’s social agility through an on-site QR code where visitors can unlock exclusive WeChat content inspired by its outerwear campaign. This interactive program extends a visitor’s physical experience to the online world through digital wallpapers and shareable stickers.
These elaborate and pioneering presentations exemplify how brands have become competitive in pushing boundaries and making strong impressions in China. This show also marks a step up in the growing importance of CIIE for communicating a company’s presence and commitment to this market and its corporate stakeholders.
The Jing Take reports on a piece of the leading news and presents our editorial team’s analysis of the key implications for the luxury industry. In the recurring column, we analyze everything from product drops and mergers to heated debate sprouting on Chinese social media.