China Market Update February 25th 2020


  • China’s second-hand eCommerce market (or ‘re-commerce’ market) is booming. Consumers are buying everything from used cars, to ‘lightly-used’ lipstick. The market is predicted to reach RMB 1.25 trillion (around $178 billion) in 2020, rising by 70% from RMB 742 billion in 2018. The biggest players in this space include Alibaba’s Idle Fish and Zhuanzhuan ( Read More.
  • Pinduoduo has revealed several insights into Chinese shopping habits throughout the outbreak. Yoga mats have jumped 350%, electric eggbeaters are up 260%, gaming consoles such as PlayStation and Nintendo have doubled, face masks and disinfectants have also intuitively skyrocketed. Read More.
  • China’s grocery delivery businesses are seeing between two and six times order growth. Read More.
  • JD has developed a mini-program to help bricks-and-mortar shop owners migrate online during the outbreak. Since Feb 10th, the program has helped at least 2,096 shopping assistants, and sales hit nearly ¥10M in just 7 days. Read More.
  • Chinese businesses have reportedly been leveraging their returning foreign workers to bring in commercial volumes of facemasks and disinfectants from overseas. Meanwhile, JD Logistics is working with dozens of global businesses, charities and other agencies to coordinate the import of medical and health equipment, including 300,000 sets of medical protective clothing. Read More.
  • On February 10, Pinduoduo announced that the company will provide 1 billion yuan to ease the COVID-19 virus economic impact. Beyond providing medical devices and equipment to health workers in Hubei, they are also subsidising businesses and logistics, donating funds and materials, subsidising orders and improving their customer support and logistics capabilities. Read More.
  • Sales of C2M (consumer-to-manufacturer) health-related home appliances on JD from January 25 till now, have tripled compared with the same period last year. Popular products include air purifiers, sanitizer cabinets and sterilizer machines, cleaners, dishwashers and irons. Read More.
  • Zhihu will link products listed on Pinduoduo, Taobao and JD to drive revenue amidst the crisis. Read More.
  • COVID-19 has had a strong impact on Valentine’s day promotions. Whilst some brands are afraid to launch promotions out of fear of being perceived as insensitive, others have displayed innovation – such as cosmetics company Perfect Diary, who have leveraged gamification. Read More.

Science, Research & Innovation

  • The COVID-19 toll currently stands at 79,525 cases, 2,627 deaths and 24,948 recoveries.
  • Alibaba Cloud and Baidu have made their AI-powered gene sequencing algorithms available to vaccine researchers and scientists. Read More.
  • Xiaomi has patented a smart mask – tracking pollution inhalation with a mobile app. Read More.


  • EIU forecast that global tourism will take an $80billion hit, and may not recover until Q1, 2021. Read More.
  • Coresight Research suggest that COVID19’s impact on tourism may be short-lasted. Read More.
  • Tourism Australia has rolled out a big international tourism campaign in spite of COVID-19. Read More.


  • China Skinny have posted a very insightful infographic covering the vast impacts of COVID-19 across a wide variety of categories, from groceries, to education and tourism. Read More.
  • Average weekly app downloads in Feb exceeded 200 million, 50% higher than Feb 2019. Read More.
  • With music venues and performance arenas shut, China is seeing strong innovation in the online music industry. Musicians and performers have taken to platforms like Douyin and Bilibili and have been the beneficiaries of a huge rise in online tipping. Simultaneously, there has been a surge in demand for community radio as venues and entertainers seek out innovative ways to engage with a broader audience, and bored citizens seek out ‘virtual parties’. Read More.

Remote Work

  • The remote working solution resulting from mass quarantines has revealed major bandwidth issues for managers across China, with major issues relating to transparency, collaboration and communication. Following the rising popularity of ZOOM and Slack, some are speculating that this may pave the way for other western collaboration/eLearning software to enter the market. Read More.
  • Earlier this month, Dingtalk (Alibaba’s cloud workplace collaboration software) displaced WeChat as the most popular free program available on the China Apple store. Read More. The company then revealed several free features to support remote workers, including video conferencing, livestreaming, cloud-based document editing and approval and daily health surveys. According to Alizilla, the platform now supports over 200 million employees from 10 million companies. Read More.


  • In the wake of China’s recent announcement that schools will remain shut for the month of March (Read More), demand for computers and tech accessories have skyrocketed. Laptop sales reportedly leaped 50%, iPads jumped 40%, while printers have jumped up to 200%. Read More.
  • China has launched a national online learning platform and started broadcasting primary school classes on public TV to help 180 million students. Read More.


  • Pepsi is expanding in China and plans to buy online snacks retailer Hangzhou Haomusi Food for US$705 million. Read More.
  • Disney’s to lose US$175 million if its parks remain closed for 2 months. Read More.
  • Didi has adopted AI and facial recognition to detect if its drivers are wearing masks. Read More.

* indicates required

Ready to find out more?

Set up a 30 minute consultation now.