Victoria’s Secret is opening stores in Mainland China, but don’t expect to see expect to see thongs or push-up bras in the window.
In an attempt to break into the hugely lucrative (and rapidly-growing) Chinese market, the lingerie company is customizing its offerings to suit the country’s more conservative sensibilities. Their six new stores will offer VS’s fragrances and beauty products, which make up a much smaller part of the company’s revenue stream in Western countries.
According to The Washington Times:
The offerings in Victoria’s Secret’s first Chinese stores, opening in Shanghai, Shenzhen and four other cities, reflect cultural differences and market realities. At least at first, the stores will offer not racy bras but “an iconic, fashion-forward range of beauty products and accessories designed for the modern jet-setter,” according to the announcement by L Brands, Victoria’s Secret’s Ohio-based parent company.
This isn’t the first time a company has adapted its offerings to please local consumers. McDonald’s is notable for creating numerous menu items that cater to an individual country — such as the Ebi Filet-O Shrimp Burger (panko-battered shrimp, topped with Ebi shrimp tempura sauce and lettuce) in Japan, or the the Bubur Ayam (chicken strips in Malaysian-style porridge topped with spring onions, ginger, fried shallots and chillies) in Malysia. Fast food competitor KFC offer 50 new products a year on its Chinese menus, and Starbucks focuses more on tea than coffee. In all these cases, those changes have worked, turning locals into loyal customers of these brands.
Whether or not this current move for Victoria’s Secret in China will work remains to be seen, but it certainly has opened the door for the company. And a little opening may be all they need to get one of their beautiful, and scantily clad, angels flying through the door very soon.