China’s passion for luxury: here are the brands Chinese buyers like the best

To begin with, the top three in the rankings are French brands, and you may easily figure out who they are. Yet, most importantly, we find out something more: by and large, leather goods win hands down

It is an extremely simple question. The answer (more than one, actually) is rather obvious. Yet, again, to some extent though. Agility Research & Strategy, one of the top ten luxury consulting companies worldwide, on a global scale, has been wondering about the brands Chinese buyers like the best. We are talking about luxury brands, of course, whose business in China may firmly rely (this is also a consequence following economic instability caused by Covid-19 pandemic) on a well-established marketing development. As a result, the company’s survey has led to a report, called Agility China Luxury Brand Affinity Rankings, which we are about to outline in the following paragraphs.

The brands Chinese buyers like the best

While calculating and setting up the rankings, Agility gave each brand a score based on 12 different criteria. Chanel, whose final score was 99 out of 100, is the winner. The runner-up is Dior, whose score was 87; third best is Hermès, whose score was 83. For the records, Hermès should place in first position, due to the power of the brand, yet its products, which are more exclusive, are less likely to be chosen as a gift and, therefore, purchased.

The rest of the rankings

A group of three brands, composed of LancômeEstée Lauder and Gucci, which all scored 77, are placing in fourth position. RolexCartierLouis Vuitton, and Armani are the other brands in the top ten rankings. While speaking about Louis Vuitton, James Roy, chief manager of the Agility branch in Shanghai, commented: “It is no longer considered so influential as it used to be in the past days.”

Who is the real winner?

Apart from brands, leather goods are the real winner. “In fact, brands running a well-established leather goods business, along with a strong digital role and a widespread network of selling stores, in China, turned out to be the real winners”- commented Mario Ortelli, managing partner of Ortelli & Co. luxury consulting, while talking to BoF about the performance achieved by luxury top brands in the first quarter of 2021.

What they buy

Other than fashion brands, what do Chinese buyers purchase? Business of Fashion helps us answer such question. Due to the pandemic outbreak, in China home apparel did not enjoy a boost. The same goes for the rest of the world. Buyers look for comfort, minimal and casual articles, which are supposed to be timeless, with neutral shades. An elegant and stylish informality, kind of, which does not go hand in hand with a quick increase in demand for fancy dresses and heeled shoes. Yet it has also brought one more effect: it has given a remarkable boost to accessories, especially bags, to customise and enhance one’s outfit. So much so that local boutiques (as much as all brands’ stores) are augmenting their supply.

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