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Asian brands continue to thrive within their own borders, rising on top of most of the Asian markets in recent years. Their success isn’t without challenges or setbacks, but having a strong partnership with local retail power players has kept them grounded and continued to advance and outperform multinational brands.
Kantar Worldpanel’s second annual Asia Brand Power is published today, zeroing in on the powerful partners behind Asian brands’ success, responding and tailoring to consumers’ changing needs, driving and reshaping the FMCG market in Asia.
In this report, Kantar Worldpanel explores the hidden dimension of the rise of Asia’s FMCG brands - by revealing the local retailers that increasingly act as gatekeepers to rapid-growth markets and what contributes to their success. The report dissects what types of partnerships they seek amongst their suppliers and manufacturers. Through interviews with some of the leading local retailers in the region, the report provides intimate views of their business strategies and the secret ingredients to their phenomenal growth.
Asia Brand Power: the retailer report – at a glance
Rapid demographic change is a defining feature of the retail landscape in Asia. Ageing populations and urbanisation are combining to reshape the rhythms of shopping. Retailers are fast to respond to these demographic changes by understanding how to cope the needs of the ageing populations and shrinking households – less meal planning, prefer to buy what they need, when they need it. One of the most important trends reshaping the retail landscape in Asia is the move towards buying and selling products in smaller, single-use packages. There are many upsides of single-use packages. They encourage appetites for experimentation, allowing shopper to try new products and brands.
The most dramatic growth figures in FMCG in the region are being posted by chains of minimarts and convenience stores, and bringing convenience and community together is the key. The smaller, neighborhood format of stores are bridging the gap between modern and traditional trade and serve as community hubs where shoppers can pay utility bills, buy travel tickets, book concerts, and for social gatherings. Many of them are delivering strong growth, outpacing the larger format stores.
As smartphone penetration increases across most Asian markets, an increasingly complex picture is emerging when it comes to how consumers integrate their online and offline shopping experiences. The choice between visiting stores and buying through the internet is not a mutually exclusive one. Asian retailers are finding new ways to smooth the shopper experience through technology – and this is one of the most exciting features of the FMCG market in the region. In China, the fusion of offline and online (OAO) is a priority for every major retailer – and that includes those who have built their businesses online.
A greater emphasis on health and quality for Asian shoppers is driving demands of retailers to provide better reassurance on safety and quality. Be it food safety issue in China and Taiwan, quality control for online orders, or origin-traceable meat and organic food, the leading retailers are keenly aware it’s their responsibility to step up and take charge in providing shoppers the peace of mind.
Marcy Kou, Asia CEO, Kantar Worldpanel explains:
“Glance at the ranking of the world’s most chosen consumer brands compiled by Kantar Worldpanel, and you quickly notice that, across Asia, no two markets choose the same FMCG brand most frequently. Most are dominated by those that have emerged within their own borders.
The rise of local Asian FMCG brands has taken place alongside an equally dramatic rise for local retailers. The partnerships formed by these two types of Asian champion are fundamental to their success: they help to make local brands more mentally available than multinational rivals; and they support innovative retailer strategies that are both anticipating and responding to Asia’s changing shopping habits.”