Mecca is dipping its toes into the Chinese market, by launching a partnership with TMall Global.
Mecca is launching into the Chinese market, via the e-commerce platform, TMall Global. This partnership aims to showcase Australian beauty brands and businesses into the Chinese market.
Mecca currently has more than 100 stores across Australia and New Zealand and is one of the leading beauty retailers both online and in-store.
“China is the second-largest premium beauty market globally, behind the United States,” said Jo Horgan, the Founder and Co-CEO of Mecca. “In three years’ time, it’s predicted to be the number-one market. And consumer dynamics in China are changing in Mecca’s favour; there’s a growing interest in niche, premium brands, in more international brands.”
Australia is currently facing a flurry of deliveries as e-commerce continues to boom in popularity amid the pandemic. As such, there have been serious delays in supply chains, last mile and exports across the country. For Mecca, this means that the launch into the new market was ‘not ideal’.
“It’s a new way of operating, for sure. I will be in my front room doing a live cross to Shanghai. Because we’re in stage four I’m doing my own hair and make-up … and it’ll probably be my daughter holding my iPhone,” Horgan told AFR.
In China, there are mandatory regulations for selling skincare and cosmetics to the general public. These regulations require brands to test on animals prior to sale, which is a controversial topic amongst consumers and brands. However, TMall Global functions as an online marketplace, meaning there are no requirements for testing on animals from an international seller.
The retailer has employed a team of staff in China, who were trained by Mandarin and Cantonese-speaking Mecca staff from Australia and New Zealand.
“We have been approached on so many occasions to go internationally in different shapes and forms,” Horgan explained. “Our focus has always been on the customer experience, and we have the team and operations to support that in Australia and New Zealand. We’ve waited until we felt it was the right time to translate that to another market.”
While there are no plans to open a brick-and-mortar Mecca store in China just yet, the retailer will focus on its e-commerce offering to ensure there is proper research done for the market and consumer behaviour.
“If we are successful in that, it opens up every opportunity for us. We are a bricks-and-mortar operator, and we offer something very unique in-store. We would love to replicate that in other markets. But let’s crawl first and then see if we can walk and run,” Horgan said.
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