China has a fast-paced culture, a passion for innovation, and a hunger for change. The nation’s 6.3% R&D investment increase is more than double the growth rates
of both the U.S. and Europe, according to a 2016 study in R&D Magazine.
And China is slowly losing its image as
a copycat nation. The country’s State
Intellectual Property Office led worldwide patent application filings by a large
margin for three years running, with
825,136 filed in 2013, according to the
2014 edition of the World Intellectual
Replete with 87,366 retail companies—the most on the planet, China
places importance on creating unique
branded experiences. New store designs
constantly appear in rapidly growing
megacities such as Shenzhen, Gang-zhou, Beijing, and Hangzhou. Chinese
retail design demonstrates attention to
detail through the use of textures, exotic
materials, and digital signage. China is
becoming a trendsetter in the convergence
of technology and design within businesses.
Five trends make this market worth global attention.
1 Big and Biggest
There is no such thing as one flagship store, as the population of most
Chinese cities allows for numerous flagships in one market. China accounts
for nearly a quarter of the 150 most-populous cities worldwide, and both
Shanghai and Beijing eclipse even New York City and São Paulo in population, according to a 2016 World Atlas report. Apple has five flagships
in Shanghai alone, and the city boasts three high-fashion malls featuring
Consumers are moving from suburban communities to urban centers,
driving rapid growth in major cities such as Shanghai. As these urban
centers grow, distinctive communities are emerging with their own personalities and cultures. Flagship stores play an important role as landmarks that
define and legitimize these communities.
Chinese consumers have a deep desire
for status brands, providing a fertile market