Tompkins International Comments on the Apple Watch, the iPhone, and China

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“Sold in China” Joins “Made in China”

Tompkins International explains the importance of China to Apple. In a first for the company, Apple will release a major new product, the Apple Watch, simultaneously in the US and China, following the runaway success of the iPhone 6 in the Middle Kingdom which is now the second best selling smartphone in a market of 1.2 billion handsets. On April 24, 2015 the Apple Watch will be released on T-Mall, in Apple Stores, and on the Apple website and will come WeChat ready.

In China, Apple is on the leading edge of a trend that sees American brands and retailers changing their fortunes for the better by stamping “Sold in China” alongside “Made in China” on their products, with the result being higher profits, more jobs, and overall economic growth in the United States.

Michael Zakkour a Vice President and the China/Asia Pacific Practice Leader for Tompkins International and author of “China’s Super Consumers” explains that “there are now 800 million Chinese consumers who want American brands and products, who are seeking 'affordable luxury' brands and who aspire to the American lifestyle, and this is directly benefitting companies like: Apple, COACH, GNC, Michael Kors, and Tory Burch.”

China has 1.2 billion active mobile handsets, four times the total population of the United States. Apple’s gold colored iPhone was a huge success because “gold is the color of power, wealth, leadership, and Emperors in China,” said Zakkour. In 2014 Apple had a record $16 billion fourth quarter, 25% of which was generated in China largely because of the iPhone 6, they are hoping to double down on that success with the Apple Watch.

“The Apple Watch is sure to be a big hit with China’s Tuhao consumers. Tuhao are nouveau riche who love flashy, in your face, displays of wealth. The Apple Watch appeals to their wanting to show off with the most fashionable, technologically advanced, and expensive devices,” said Zakkour. The desire for the Apple Watch is so high in China that faux Apple Watches have already hit the market.

China is as important to Apple as the US is today. “China will be more important to Apple in the future. Chinese consumption will dramatically increase economic growth and activity in the US over the next ten years,” said Zakkour.

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