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Hypermarkets are taking off in China and driving mass grocery retail sales, which are expected to grow 70 percent by 2011. Hypermarkets offer all that can be found in supermarkets and department stores together, and are surpassing the growth rate of Chinese supermarkets.

“A single hypermarket can offer a low price by ordering large quantities and lowering costs by using suppliers’ own logistics systems,” says Alan Morrell, Austrade’s Guangzhou based senior trade commissioner. “To enable Australian suppliers of lifestyle products and food and beverages to capitalise on increased demand, Austrade is inviting producers’ to take part in this year’s Australian Lifestyle Expo 2007 in Guangzhou China in December. The expo is well placed to attract high quality buyers for Australian businesses to meet on a one-on-one basis.”

More than one thousand key buyers of lifestyles products and services are expected to attend the expo this year. With buyers from across China attending last year, 80 percent of participating businesses laid the export groundwork. As no international businesses are attending, businesses will have a more opportunities to shine and raise Australia’s profile.

For those wondering why the Chinese are interested in Australian products, the answer is simple. “Australia has the world’s most marketable country brand. Our brand’s strength in China is driven by the resources boom, plus Chinese students attending Australian educational institutions, and a rapid increase in our tourism numbers. All these factors have influenced the Chinese to develop a taste for all things Australian,” says Tim Harcourt, Austrade’s chief economist.

The Australian Lifestyle Expo 2007 will be held from 7 – 9 December in Guangzhou. Australian products and services, from food and beverages to retail design and jewellery, will be displayed.

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