Week #33: Jack Ma resurfaced , Is luxury falling back in love with Hong Kong? 🇭🇰 “Why can't Chinese products be expensive?" 💸 | Following the yuan
For around five years, the narrative of HK’s retail scene has been bearish, can a couple of high fashion shows help bring back its allure?
This week marks the 1-year anniversary of the white paper revolution. Last year, I was in the U.S., observing the events unfold through social media. At that time, I wrote two essays: one pondering how politics overshadow everything, and another questioning if foreign consumer companies would acknowledge the protests in Shanghai.
My questions were based on assumptions and the footage I saw. However, when I came back, I soon realized that it had minimal impact on most people’s lives here.
We often fail to recognize that the vast majority of people are likely to follow in the footsteps of their predecessors, leading what they consider a normal life. In China, this 'normal' might mean staying emotionally detached and experiencing bouts of selective memory, or maybe they simply prioritize other things in life.
Side note: Apologies for publishing on Wednesdays, instead of Tuesdays, lately, and being late on deep dives — I’ve been a bit overwhelmed with project work, but I realized and in the process of designing systems (let me know if you have any tips). Aside from that, I’m collaborating withon a piece about China and Vietnam’s supply chains, if you, or someone you know, have insights into this topic, please drop me a note.
This week, I highlight how Jack Ma’s appearance is connected to PDD, whether Hong Kong can make a comeback in retail, and the ‘expensive China goods’ controversy involving down jacket brands Skypeople and Bosideng. Let’s dive in:
1. Jack Ma resurfaced, thanks to Pinduoduo (Temu’s parent)
What happened: Tech Tycoon Jack Ma recently resurfaced in an internal online post, as Alibaba employees commented on rival e-commerce retailer Pinduoduo (Nasdaq: PDD)’s remarkable performance in Q3 2023.