The ultra high-definition TVs, virtual reality goggles and feet-warming smart shoes keeping tech geeks in thrall at this week’s Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas will make their way to China for a similar event in April, according to an announcement from Alibaba Group’s B2C shopping site Tmall.com.
Tmall has partnered with Internationale Funkausstellung Berlin, the German organization behind Europe’s annual IFA personal technology event, to stage the Consumer Electronics China show in the southern technology hub of Shenzhen on April 20-22.
The partnership was announced yesterday at CES during a speech by Tmall executive Yin Jing, who oversees the site’s 3C, or computer, communication and consumer electronics, division. Yin said that some of the biggest names in the industry, along with a host of startups, will take part in the CE China event, although he didn’t name names in his speech. He did say, however, that a number of the companies are expected to open stores on Tmall by the end of the year.
Tmall’s decision to help stage a big consumer electronics show in China makes sense in light of the growing trend among Chinese consumers to purchase consumer electronics via the Internet and to increasingly seek out foreign brands. Sixteen percent of consumer electronic devices purchased in China last year were bought online, up from just 1 percent five years ago, according to U.S. management consultancy McKinsey & Co. And 25 percent of consumer electronics currently sold on Tmall are made by overseas companies.
IFA’s annual show in Berlin, held every September, has existed in some form since 1924. Last year, 1,600 exhibitors and 240,000 visitors took part, as well as 6,000 journalists from more than 70 countries. The six-day show generated $4.7 billion in orders. CE China will be the first time that IFA has held an event outside of Germany.
More details about CE China are expected to be released in the coming months. The most current details about the event can be found here.
(Correction, 1/8/16: A previous version of this story misstated that Consumer Electronics China will be China’s first consumer electronics trade show. In fact, CES launched one in Shanghai last year.)