Weekend Sound Bites: Chinese Collectors, Uber’s Urban Challenge, And 1,000-Yuan Wine

Welcome to Jing Daily‘s Weekend Sound Bites: a rundown of what industry influencers were saying about the week’s top stories on the business of luxury and culture in China.



—FRIDAY, 7/18 —

“Today it is a different story. Foreign capital and knowledge have no premium; indeed, it may even be the reverse. Multinationals face a significantly harsher landscape. Returning Chinese no longer enjoy a pay premium.”

-Zhiwu Chen, professor of finance at the Yale School of Management, on why the business environment is getting tougher for foreign companies in China. (FT)

—THURSDAY, 7/17 —

“As a local Party newspaper, Changzhou Daily even went so far as to urge the city’s residents to buy houses on its front page, saying it was the best time to do so. This kind of market support measure betrays a lack of moral principle.”

People’s Daily, the Chinese Communist Party’s national mouthpiece, chastising a Changzhou paper for hard-selling property in one of China’s best-known ghost towns. (China Real Time)

—WEDNESDAY, 7/16 —

“We have seen steady continued growth with 20 percent of all new clients this year from Asia and an increased spend by mainland Chinese clients in our sales globally up 46 percent [from] the same period last year.”

-Steven Murphy, global CEO of auction house Christie’s, on the rise of mainland Chinese buyers in the global art scene. (SCMP)

— TUESDAY, 7/15 —

“Beijing is a big, complicated city… in short, we can’t change the traffic.”

-Allen Penn, Uber’s Asia division head, on Uber’s unexpected snag with opening its services in Beijing—gridlocks and traffic jams. (China Real Time)

— MONDAY, 7/14 —

“People are not drinking the 5,000 yuan wines anymore. But those who are drinking can spend 1,000-1,500 yuan and still get a great bottle of wine. We’re seeing a lot more activity at that end of the market.”

-John Watkins, chief executive of ASC Fine Wines, on the shift of China’s wine market toward the entry level during the government’s ongoing anti-corruption crackdown. (WSJ)