"They told me they would rather pay 3x for a Western brand as they see Chinese products as very poor quality, carrying little kudos"
I've seen this happening as well. Even if the product of the Western brand was also manufactured in China, people would still prefer the Western brand and pay the high price. I think the Chinese brands really have to establish quality standards to build up an image and gain recognition. A part of it would also be to change consumer perception through marketing.
I wonder how much of the rise in discretionary spending is a result, not of improved conditions for the rank-and-file laborer, but of the cash flow from all the incoming investment dollars and bureaucratic fee structure. Also, China's managerial class is known to be of a caliber that rivals the West, so no doubt they know how to work the organization for wage incentives.
@Ariella: You'd be surprised to see that there are actually brand-loyal consumers who are willing to spend twice or thrice the amount just because of the brand even when the features are same. Compare how Apple's products cost way more than other brands even when the hardware specifications are not much different. It's all about the brand name that gets them to pay more.
I think China's population will ultimately match up with the Japanese population not just in terms of their living standards and lifestyles, but also on how they upgraded themselves and reached to this point.
@Mr. Roques, i highly doubt that Apple will comeup with cheaper iPhone or Tablet just to grab more market. I have heard a lot about Apple coming up with cheaper Mac about 5 years ago but that has not happened. Apple's strategy to keep the price up and deliver class product has been going well so why try experimenting in a different direction.
I think China is the best place to launch a new product especially electronical items. Im saying this not considering only the population but they are very much risk takers who love to try out the things quickly than the others.
"As wages begin to rise in the region, companies will have to increasingly shift their focus toward selling to China's consumers in addition to employing them"
Barbara, I don't know how much this is feasible because Chinese governments are interested only in attracting FDI. They are not that much keen in promoting foreign goods or goods manufactured through any MNC in China. Instead of that they are promoting locally manufacturing goods, inorder to boost the internal market and Small/Medium Scale Manufactures.
EBN Dialogue enables and encourages you to participate in live chats with notable leaders and luminaries. Not only editors and journalists, but the entire EBN community is able to comment and ask questions. Listed below are upcoming and archived chats.
Thailand Stages a Comeback Join EBN contributor Jennifer Baljko on Thursday August 23, 2012, at 11:00 a.m. EST for a live chat on how electronic manufacturers in Thailand have shored up their supply chain to reduce the impact of future natural disasters.
Microsoft Surface: Potential Winners & Losers What are the implications for the electronics industry supply chain of Microsoft Corp.'s decision to launch its own tablet PC? Join industry veteran and EE Times' systems and OEM expert Rick Merritt on Tuesday, July 3, at 12:00 pm EDT for a Live Chat on this subject.
Join EBN contributor Jennifer Baljko on Thursday August 23, 2012, at 11:00 a.m. EST for a live chat on how electronic manufacturers in Thailand have shored up their supply chain to reduce the impact of future natural disasters.
Peter Drucker famously said "Trying to predict the future is like trying to drive down a country road at night with no lights while looking out the back window." Yet in the razor's-edge world of electronics—with a lean supply chain and just-in-time demands—the need to know the future is vital.
You've heard the saying "the No. 1 supply chain risk is your people." That hasn't always been the case. But today's complex global supply chain requires a new type of multitalented employee. It's one who understands, finance, marketing, economics, is savvy with technology, graceful with relationships and can think analytically.
Where are these people? Are universities properly preparing the next generation supply chain professionals? How do train your existing workforce for these new, demanding positions?
Brian Fuller, editor-in-chief of EBN, will lead a 60-minute Avnet Velocity panel discussion that will ask and answer these and other questions swirling around today's supply-chain talent challenges.