The following is a preview excerpt from Jing Daily’s upcoming Market Report on Chinese brand collaborations. Packed with market research, best practices, and case studies, the report is a must-read for anyone interested in how Chinese brands and designers are leveraging collaborations to boost revenue and reach new audiences. Email us to pre-order your copy today.
On a global level, brands are leveraging collaborations with retailers to broaden their reach and revenue while retailers turn to the strategy to increase footfall and appeal to younger generations. This type of retail x brand collaboration ranges from the mass market to luxury. On one end of the retail spectrum are collaborations between American megastore Target and Tory Burch and Missoni, while on the other are collaborations between the likes of Hermès and Sacai and Paris-based retailer Colette over the store’s two-decade-long lifespan.
In mainland China, collaborations between brands and retailers in the model of Colette or New York-based Opening Ceremony have been on the rise over the past decade. One of the pioneers of brand and retail collaborations in mainland China is Shanghai-based Labelhood蕾虎, founded in 2009 by Tasha Liu. Functioning as something of a combination between an incubator for emerging designers and a retailer, Labelhood reaches young Chinese consumers via events and retail experiences via a network of eight retail spaces (which include its Shanghai flagship, a VIP house, and regular pop-ups).
What sets Labelhood apart in the China market is its reputation as a brand incubator, centering on identifying and cultivating new design talent, taking emerging designers to market, and collaborating with international B2B and B2C counterparts such as Pitti Uomo, Tomorrow Group, and Machine-A. Labelhood also operates online stores on Tmall and a WeChat Mini Program. Since 2014, Labelhood has launched more than 80 collaborations with domestic and foreign brands including Airbnb, MINI, Harrods, Uma Wang x Marchen, and YiranTian.
Founded in Chongqing in 2013, the retailer SND (Selection of Nonconformist Design) specializes in domestic and foreign niche and independent brands, with previous collaborations including ShuShu/Tong, The Tavern, and Y/Project. Even relatively new independent retailers have rolled out collaborations with both Chinese and international designers, with the four-year-old, Shanghai-based concept store CanalStreet坚尼街 launching a collaboration with French jewelry designer Justine Clenquet in March 2022.
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