The market value of 70 billion yuan, ten years in China, why did Marta’s department store lose Greater China?

Marks and Spencer, the United Kingdom, announced that it will close the Tmall online store and fully withdrawn from mainland China retail business.

Since Martha’s 2008 entered the Chinese market in 2008, it has happened for 10 years. It took 8 years to open 15 large stores in China, and it took only 2 years to close them.

Founded in 1884, the clothing and food retail chain of the British bloodlines have been aggressive in recent years. – Large -scale clearance promotion.

This is also another British local brand farewell to the Chinese market after another British retail giant Tesco and Britain’s largest fashion e -commerce ASOS.


On November 8, 2016, Martha Department Store announced closing all the shops in Mainland China, including the Beijing World Trade Sky Store, which had just operated for a year -this store was regarded as a transformation after Martha’s considering Chinese business.

One year in 2016, Martha announced the closure of physical stores in 10 countries including China. Today, it is self -evident as it is announced to close its online Tmall shop.

Martha chose to continue to cooperate with long-term partner Dubai Group Al-Futtaim to operate and expand in markets such as Hong Kong and Macau. At the beginning of January this year, Al-Futtain bought Marta’s Hong Kong and Macau business.

In November last year, Martha decided to review overseas business strategies. In order to make the international business more continuous and profitable, it plans to close 53 wholly -owned direct stores of 10 countries, and from direct business to to direct business to Frank business model.

At present, Marta has withdrawn from 10 losses international markets. In addition to mainland China, it also includes Belgium, Estonia, Hungary, Lithuania, the Netherlands, Poland, Romania and Slovakia.

Last Thursday, Martha’s stock price fell nearly 7 % on the London Stock Exchange, becoming the largest stock of the FTSE 100 index.

China has caught up with the US share and has become the world’s largest retail market. According to Emarketer’s latest global retail forecast, the total value of China’s retail market is US $ 4.89 trillion (£ 3.98 trillion), while the United States is US $ 4.82 trillion (£ 3.92 trillion).

Marta once hoped to play a “melee” and rushed out of the fast -fashion brand. But the data shows that its women’s clothing has lagged behind many fast fashion brands such as Uniqlo, Vero Moda, Ochirlly, ZARA and H & M. According to the report of Euromonitor International, the total scale of the Chinese women’s clothing market reached RMB 872.8 billion (US $ 134 billion), and it is expected to reach 963.2 billion yuan by 2021.

Rental operation costs high


The biggest challenge facing all Chinese retailers is high rent. In fact, Martha Department Store (as people expect) positioning its stores in the most expensive retail areas, especially Shanghai.

These multi -layered department stores look impressive from the outside, but Chinese consumers traditional in tradition -or at least they will not go through four floors to buy a pack of imported biscuits.

Chinese observers said that Marta’s department store was also accused of opening a store in strange places, whether in second -tier cities, or approaching mature, cheap foreign competitors.

“People can understand Marta’s department stores that need to have business in first -tier cities such as Beijing and Shanghai, but in other parts of China, I don’t think people will spend a lot of money on their clothes,” said Yang Dazhong, a retail expert of Zhongtian Yuanguang Consulting Company.

Market brands are not disdainful to promote “high cold”

But its biggest obstacle to China is still a lack of understanding of Chinese consumers. For a 10 -year -old company, it may be more appropriate to describe it with “not heart”.

Mr. Yang added: “I don’t think Marta’s department store doesn’t know much about China. Obviously it is not clear about the type of target consumers.”

The Jiangsu Commercial Daily pointed out that the English name of Marta’s products is not worried in Chinese, and most of the clothes are used in Britain and Europe, instead of using the concept of large, medium and small in Chinese. The most important product partition is still English.

Some experts point out that the clothing itself is often not in line with the Chinese figure, and it is too wide.

He said: “You only need to compare it with IKEA -IKEA quickly changes their marketing strategies to meet their needs in the Chinese market. Chinese people like IKEA. They can even spend a day in the store -or even sleep. ! “”

The online market of the market that is unwilling to the market and the popular China online market has made it follow. A company spokesman said: “The complexity and cost of transactions, and the highly promoting online Chinese market, means that our continuous operation of our online business in China is unsustainable.”

Adam Colton, managing director of Greater China, pointed out that “low brand awareness” is the key reason for withdrawing from the Chinese market.


Some people point out that young Chinese prefer more enthusiastic clothing. But it is strange that the Chinese actually absorbed the more traditional “Britain” elements, but Martha still couldn’t tie their hearts.

Jim James, a foreigner in Beijing since 2006 to the present, said: “Chinese people like British products, but Chinese consumers have vision.”

Select the wrong business breakthrough, insist on clothing > Food

Regarding the news of Marta’s withdrawal from the Chinese market, young people on social networks responded surprisingly: those delicious black tea, potato chips, breakfast oatmeal and wine will never be found in the future.

Compared with clothing, Martha’s main products have a greater proportion of food composition in their income composition. In recent years, their food income has continued to grow, and clothing categories are in a decline.

But food has never been implemented in China as a key business. Even the British Hurun couldn’t stand it anymore: “Look at Martha’s cafe, there are some muffins and egg yolks sandwiches on a empty shelf, which makes people feel like returning to the former Soviet era.”

The target customer positioning is blurred and there is no “cost -effective” advantage

DataQuest Consulting CEO pointed out that Marta has a very stable middle -class consumer market in the UK. “But in China, they are scattered on consumers at various social classes, not really targeting any crowd.”

Marta’s department store still maintains a rigorous and stable style in China. Of course, one of them is to attract Chinese middle -class customers, but those who make many consumers in the 80s and 90s feel “old -fashioned” in China.

A recent study by Bain’s consultation shows that Marta’s department store has been having a market share by local competitors in recent years, mainly because of ignoring China’s rapid changes in consumer demand.

Among the 26 fields of research, the sales of foreign brands fell by 1.4 % in 2015, while local brands increased by 7.8 %. “((They) can quickly respond to the needs of Chinese consumers.”

Martha was originally prepared to recover a city online. It was launched on the online market (Tmall), Alibaba’s online market in 2012. Compared with last year’s Black Friday, last year “Singles Day” has gained double -digit growth.

But this year it seems that the effect is not good, and the pride of Marta’s department store in China has finally collapsed. There is no fashion for ZARA, no low price of H & M, no good for Uniqlo, and not even Chinese domestic people. Martha’s destiny can be imagined that it is inevitable that the higher the Chinese consumers who are required to be discarded.

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