Bridging the gap between Chinese brands and western resellers

Brands from China are often perceived in the west as being of inferior quality but in 2018 that isn’t necessarily the case, reveals David Feakins, CEO and founder of Modus Brands.
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The Chinese market has had a long-standing role within global tech. However, this largely remained as a supplier of tech components and hardware for consumer tech devices. Nowadays, China is increasingly bringing its own consumer brands to market which are winning.

The growth of these brands is fuelled by China’s own domestic market which is larger than Europe and North America combined. Yet, the increasing popularity of China’s tech brands goes beyond its own borders as the country has become the largest tech exporter in Asia.

Mobile is a key area where China continues to invest and develop. The country has demonstrated ability to go head-to-head with western giants, with brands like Huawei and Xiaomi each producing handsets that can compete with Apple’s iPhone.

The continued success of the Chinese tech means that there are an abundance of opportunities that retailers and resellers can take advantage of. However, it is at this point where resellers and manufacturers hit a wall.

There is a clear interest in Chinese brands from western consumers. Huawei saw European sales jump by 38 per cent to place itself as the third biggest manufacturer.

Yet, while brands such as Huawei and Xiaomi have penetrated western markets, not all Chinese brands have had the same success. Many manufacturers lack the experience or expertise to create an effective sales strategy for western countries and this can mean that western resellers don’t know of the company and its products. Similarly, the manufacturer has no route to market.

In an attempt to overcome this barrier, many Chinese brands employ the help of western

resellers with specific expertise within that market. But while they may have unparalleled experience in the west, these resellers may have limited or non-existent experience of the Chinese market.

Having direct experience of working with Chinese brands will ultimately enable western resellers a clear advantage. This means they can they pinpoint innovative products in the pipeline, gauge which products sell well among eastern consumers and which brands

have the highest standards.

In order for them to work in harmony, there needs to be a clear understanding of each market from both parties. Not only do eastern brands need to understand consumer habits of those within the west, but resellers need to have insight on the technologies coming from China and how these brands could soon become household names.

David Feakins is CEO and founder of Modus Brands.

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