The Alibaba News Roundup is a weekly digest of events and happenings across the company. This week looks at an extended version of the Electronic World Trade Platform’s annual Malaysia Week campaign. Also covered is a food-meets-fashion crossover between KFC and Karl Lagerfeld as well as a report designed to help British and European brands bounce back from Covid-19.
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Alibaba Group on Wednesday kicked off its third annual Malaysia Week campaign to help brands from the balmy Southeast Asian nation connect with consumers in China. Empowered by the Electronic World Trade Platform in cooperation with the Malaysian government and the Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation, this year’s event highlights products from more than 200 Malaysian businesses, from Black Thorn durians to homegrown “clean beauty” brand Garden of Eden. Aside from being the first Malaysia Week to be extended to 10 days, this year’s edition also features products and experiences – including flexible packages from travel-services platform Fliggy and immersive virtual tours streamed on Taobao Live – aimed at fueling the post-pandemic recovery of Malaysia’s tourism sector.
“While the Covid-19 pandemic has indeed caused severe disruption to global supply chains and adversely impacted economies, it also has had a tremendous and positive effect on e-commerce particularly online shopping,” said YB Dato’ Seri Mohamed Azmin Ali, Malaysia’s senior minister of international trade and industry. “We are confident that through continuous promotions such as the Malaysia Week 2020, more Malaysian brands and products will be able to break into the highly competitive retail market in China.”
To mark the 80th anniversary of its Original Recipe chicken and to connect with China’s fashion-loving Gen Z consumer, Kentucky Fried Chicken launched a new collaboration with fashion label Karl Lagerfeld during its Tmall Super Brand Day last week. The crossover featured handbags – including one inspired by KFC’s famous chicken bucket – and also in-restaurant promotions such as special-edition employee uniforms and packaging as well as e-vouchers from Tmall that can be used for KFC food and drink items. By the end of the event, the fast-food chain sold more than 300,000 buckets of its Original Recipe chicken and also sold out all its Karl Lagerfeld crossover bags, setting new Tmall Super Brand Day sales records across the food and local-services categories.
Alibaba Group recently published a report on how China’s post-pandemic consumption trends could inform the recovery strategies of British and European brands. The report details the accelerated rise of e-commerce in China during and after the country’s lockdown period as well as the continued demand for imported goods, as purchases made on cross-border marketplace Tmall Global surged 40% year over year in June. “The new normal in China is really an acceleration of existing trends and, in particular, the shift to online. But that trend is global,” David Lloyd, Alibaba’s general manager of U.K., Netherlands & Nordics, explained in a video that touched upon findings from the report. “We want to share the trends and innovations we’ve seen in China with UK and European brands so they can learn to bounce back. ” Click here to read the full report.
Alibaba’s Tmall Global will kick off its first pitch event next week aimed at helping U.S. small and medium-sized brands expand globally. Starting from 12 p.m. PDT on Sept. 15, ten finalists – selected from nearly 100 registrations received in just two weeks – will pitch to a panel of retail experts and get a chance to fast-track their launch on Tmall Global and have their products spotlighted during Alibaba’s 11.11 Global Shopping Festival, the world’s biggest online shopping festival. Learn more about the event here, and click here to sign up.
Following a successful digital show in April, the Fondation de la Haute Horlogerie has joined forces with Tmall Luxury Pavilion for the second time to bring its Watches & Wonders event online for Chinese consumers. The latest edition of the luxury watch fair features shoppable showcases across Tmall and the exhibiting brands’ Pavilion stores – including the Net-a-Porter flagship store – as well as an offline event in Shanghai running from Sept. 9-13. Organizers will invite 30 Tmall shoppers to the exclusive offline event, where they can see the products, interact with brands and join watchmaking workshops. On Tmall, consumers can also access curated content and immersive experiences surrounding the brands’ newest timepieces, including those from nine of Richemont’s maisons such as Cartier, IWC Schaffhausen and Jaeger-LeCoultre. The Watches & Wonders collaboration marks the first in a series of events and experiences this month to celebrate Tmall Luxury Pavilion’s third anniversary.