Chinese Sportswear Brands Struggling to Compete

July 13, 2012

Chinese sportswear brands, such as Li Ning and Anta Sports Products, have lost favour with Chinese consumers who prefer foreign brands or casual clothes.

In recent years, Chinese consumers have shown a preference for the Western brands that have been cutting their prices while remaining fashionable.

High profile sponsorships such as Nike’s deal with  NBA player Jeremy Lin, who has a large fan base in China also benefit foreign brands.

Eugene Mak, an analyst for Research and investing company, Core Pacific-Yamaichi, said: “Because they do less on research or advertising, Chinese sports brands have lost touch with what consumers want. Foreign brands are more popular with China’s growing middle classes who can afford pricier and trendier products.”

Annual reports of Chinese sports brands showed inventory levels had increased from 36 percent to 58 percent between 2010 and 2011. The brands have also over expanded. Between 2007 and 2010, Anta and other Hong Kong-listed Chinese sports brands­— Li Ning, Xtep Int’l Holdings and China Dongxiang— opened a combined 9,900 stores in China.{jcomments on}