Hoping for strong China sales when Chinese New Year gifting season rolls around, French luxury lighter and pen manufacturer S.T. Dupont is the latest international brand to take part in Spring Festival festivities with two special-edition year of the horse collections. The company’s new “Horse Prestige” and “Horse Premium” collections feature some very high-end writing instruments, lighters, and accessories which combine two of the most common elements we’re going to be seeing in this year’s zodiac-inspired products: horses and gold.
The company is one of the early entrants in the market for horse-inspired luxury items. Previously, DKNY launched a special collection of clothing and accessories, Shanghai Tang teamed up with Moleskine for the pair’s annual Spring Festival diary, and Rolls-Royce released a special Ghost model inspired by traditional Chinese painting.
S.T. Dupont’s new pieces may not be as expensive as a Rolls-Royce, but they’re certainly at the higher end of the spectrum. The company’s gold lighter in its “Prestige” collection will set you back about US$13,900 (GBP8,500), while its fountain pen goes for about US$16,000 (GBP9,800).
As China’s luxury market becomes more competitive and a growing number of consumers consider individualism to be a top priority when they make their purchases, special-edition items are becoming increasingly popular. As a result, brands are hoping these special-edition zodiac products will help them stand out and gain an edge among gift buyers during the Chinese New Year shopping season.
However, in addition to steep competition, it looks like companies on the ultra-luxe end of the spectrum will also have government scrutiny to contend with again this year, since the Chinese government recently stated in no uncertain terms that the official crackdown on luxury gifting will certainly continue through the coming Spring Festival.