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Articles: Breaking into China through E-Commerce

07 November 2016

Dennis Lin , National Leader International Business – China |

For businesses selling into the Chinese market, E-Commerce is a valuable retail marketing channel. It currently accounts for approximately 11% of total retail sales, growing at over 50% year on year (source: Nielsen). Much of this is being driven by consumer desire for mobile responsive purchasing, with Chinese consumers making 55% of their online purchases from mobile phones - a figure expected to grow to 70% by 2020.

Australian food and agricultural companies with a local story and unique products that highlight the 'Aussie' lifestyle are in a prime position to take advantage of this growth prospect. However, like any business opportunity, there are challenges. Expanding overseas is complex and the unfamiliar culture and business landscape, together with very different regulations can seem daunting.

See presentations below from leading companies sharing their insights into the power of China's digital landscape:

Nik Phillips (CEO Australia, Cantara), Jessica Rudd (Jessica’s Suitcase) and Showe Zhang (Channel Director, Tencent)

Kyle Li (Account Director, Tencent) and Erwin Han, (Planning Manager, Tencent).

Tencent - One of the largest internet companies in the world with 762 million monthly active users and providing media, entertainment, internet and mobile related services. With a market cap of 2 trillion HKD (over AUD300b), it is greater in size than CBA, NAB and BHP combined. Tencent are also the owners of WeChat, a mobile chat service that combines features of whatsapp, Facebook, email and payment system.

Cantara - An international content creator and distributor and one of the first to successfully introduce foreign content via a live stream into China. With over 700 million internet users and over 1.2 billion mobile accounts, Nik from Cantara talks about successful content marketing leading to product placements.

Jessica Rudd - Lawyer, writer, daughter of former PM Kevin Rudd; now entrepreneur and founder of 'Jessica's suitcase' which sells Australian mother and baby products back to China, talks about her experiences in brekaing into China through E-Commerce.


If you want to know more about how you or your company can break into China through e-commerce, or refine its current approach, please contact your BDO team. Through our connections with key players in China's digital media and business communities, the team here at BDO can help plan and execute a strategy to achieve your growth ambitions.