REFORMS AND CONSUMER HEALTH CONCERNS DRIVE CATEGORY INTEREST
Pharmaceutical reforms and rising consumer interest in personal health drove domestic sales of healthcare brands, while increasing global interest in traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) fueled exports. TCM brands exported to over 150 countries and regions during the first half of 2015, according to the China Chamber of Commerce for Import and Export of Medicines and Health Products. The Chinese government funded a plan to open TCM centers abroad as part of the country’s international trade initiative called Belt and Road.
To penetrate the domestic market, brands continued to introduce mass products that promised the benefits of TCM medications, and they increased their presence on e-commerce and mobile platforms.
The category increased 5 percent in value in the BrandZ Top 100 Most Valuable Chinese Brands 2016, following a 1 percent increase a year ago. One brand dropped from the Top 100, leaving these three, in rank order: Yunnan Baiyao, Tong Ren Tang, and CR Sanjiu.
Yunnan Baiyao continued to advance its “New Baiyao, Great Health” strategy, adding healing TCM properties to its over-the- counter personal care range, including toothpaste, shampoo, skin creams, and feminine hygiene products.
Tong Ren Tang expanded its online presence with around 100 health and cosmetic products available on sites such as JD.com, Tmall and Yihaodian. To pursue overseas interest in TCM, Tong Ren Tang operated 56 stores in 15 countries and regions, primarily in Asia but also including North America and Europe.
Part of the State Owned Enterprise (SOE) China Resources, CR Sanjiu remained active in research and development that crossed a range of healthcare, pharmaceuticals, and TCM products.