Inaugural Hainan Expo opens today

Sanya, Hainan

The inaugural China International Consumer Products Expo (CICPE), also known as the Hainan Expo, kicks off today at the Haikou International Convention and Exhibition Center on the Chinese island.

The event, running until May 10, is organized by China’s Ministry of Commerce and the Hainan Provincial Bureau of International Economic Development. The expo aims to accelerate Hainan Free Trade Port’s construction and international business opportunities.

CICPE has registered 2,628 consumer brands, including 1,365 international brands from 69 countries and regions, according to state media outlet Xinhua. The event spans 80,000m2 (861,113ft2) with 60,000m2 (645,835ft2) dedicated to international exhibitors featuring products such as cosmetics, jewelry, consumer electronics, food and health products and liquors.

The show is expected to attract 20,000 buyers and 200,000 visitors.

The exhibition space will be separated into two sections: Country & Region Exhibition and Industries Products Exhibition.

Beauty and retail exhibitors

L’Oréal puts focus on sustainability & tech

In its 500m2 (5,382ft2) space at the Business France pavilion, French group L’Oréal is highlighting sustainability and technology. Talking to BW Confidential about the group’s presence at the Hainan Expo, L’Oréal Travel Retail Asia Pacific Managing Director Emmanuel Goulin said: “The Hainan Expo underlines an important message in building Hainan into an international tourism and consumption center. As a major partner at the expo, we hope to demonstrate our commitment to further develop business in this strategic region and offer exclusive beauty experiences to travelers.” Read the full interview with Emmanuel Goulin on the Hainan Expo and the evolution of travel retail in Hainan.

L’Oréal’s pavilion at CICPE

The company’s booth was built with ecologically produced and certified materials. Additionally, the event will host the exclusive launch of Biotherm’s collection in collaboration with London-based artist Coco Capitán. The range is intended to raise awareness about how climate change is threatening the health of phytoplankton living in oceans. The launch calls for a beach clean-up with One Planet Foundation in Hainan’s Wuzhizhou Island to tackle marine litter.

Biotherm x Coco Capitán collection

The stand also features what L’Oréal calls a tech-driven, immersive room aimed at educating visitors on Biotherm’s sustainability commitments and on ocean preservation in an interactive way.

The Biotherm immersive room at L’Oréal’s pavilion

The booth showcases 16 L’Oréal brands ranging across luxury, consumer products, haircare and active cosmetics. Visitors can preview the Valentino and Urban Decay brands for the first time in Hainan Travel Retail. Meanwhile, digital features include virtual make-up try-ons presented by YSL and Armani, powered by L’Oréal-owned ModiFace.

Lancôme brand at L’Oréal’s pavilion
L’Oréal pavilion
YSL Beauty, L’Oréal Paris, Lancôme and Kiehl’s on display at L’Oréal’s pavilion
Valentino showcased for the first time in Hainan Travel Retail
Armani and YSL Beauty presenting make-up virtual try-on technologies

Some 10 beauty talk sessions will be held over the four-day event. The talks aim to inform visitors about the latest beauty products L’Oréal brands.

Beauty talk held at the L’Oréal pavilion

L’Oréal’s pavilion opening was inaugurated with a ribbon cutting ceremony by Laurent Bili, French Ambassador to China, Wang Bingnan, Vice Minister of Commerce of China, Xiao Yingzi, Member of the Standing Committee of the Hainan Provincial Party Committee and Fabrice Megarbane, President of L’Oréal North Asia Zone & Chief Executive Officer.

Lancôme is also present in the Business France pavilion. The brand’s space will include a centerpiece made with rose petals draping from the ceiling.

Lancôme’s space at CICPE









Shiseido showcases new products and technologies

Meanwhile, Japanese group Shiseido is showcasing new brands, products and technologies. The group claims it was the first beauty company to confirm its participation in the event and its presence reinforces its commitment to long-term growth in China, and particularly to travel retail’s global hotspot, Hainan.

Its booth, dubbed the “Skin Beauty Live Studio,” spans 500m2 (5,382ft2). The space commemorates the 40th anniversary of Shiseido’s launch in the Chinese domestic market. It also highlights the company’s sustainability values and key products from the group’s 13 brands.

Shiseido’s booth at CICPE

Two prestige skincare brands, BAUM and THE GINZA, are also being unveiled for the first time in the domestic China market. Each brand is featured in separate display areas at the booth. BAUM is a sustainably positioned skincare brand that launched in May in Japan last year.

The booth will also host live events, digital touchpoints and virtual shopping experiences. A “Live Studio” concept includes a livestreaming room, where beauty consultations, product demonstrations and new brand launches will be cast to CICPE visitors and online audiences across China.

A main stage is to host the opening ceremony, in addition to talks and presentations by KOLs/KOCs and researchers from Shiseido’s China Innovation Center.

Additionally, a “Cross-Border E-Commerce” zone allows visitors to buy exclusive tax-free products yet to launch in China. To drive engagement at the booth, consumers are invited to visit different exhibition areas and collect virtual stamps on WeChat to receive a complimentary Shiseido giftset.

Foreo – Beauty device provider for Hainan Expo

Swedish brand Foreo was named CICPE’s official Beauty Devices Provider. The brand designed a special edition of its LUNA device exclusively for the event, featuring the event’s mascot, Yuanxiao, on a tropical background of Hainan island. Chinese KOL and Hainan Expo’s Ambassador Viya will promote the LUNA series during a livestream session on Taobao.

Foreo is also presenting full product lines at Global Duty Free (GDF) Plaza’s stand, the new downtown duty-free shop opened by Dufry and Hainan Development Holdings (HDH) in February. The range includes the LUNA facial cleanser series, the UFO facial masking devices and the Bear microcurrent device.








LVMH & The World of DFS

Luxury group LVMH says its presence at the show demonstrates the group’s focus on the Chinese market. Travel retailer DFS is presenting five spaces meant to showcase its global store network and luxury category offerings.

DFS’ stand at CICPE
DFS’ stand at CICPE

“The World of DFS” space highlights DFS’ global T Galleria store network and is designed to reflect the archways and light-filled spaces of its first European store T Fondaco dei Tedeschi in Venice. Next, the “DFS Timeline” area showcases the travel retailer’s key developments throughout its history, from its founding in Hong Kong in 1960 to its acquisition in 1996 by LVMH.

DFS Timeline

Visitors are then led to a room called “Exclusive Brands and Products.” The area features products from DFS’ core luxury pillars. Fashion items are displayed on what the retailer calls a stylized catwalk, while beauty and fragrance products are described as appearing to float above mirrored shelves.

Beauty and Fragrance in DFS’ “Exclusive Brands and Products” space
Fashion in DFS’ “Exclusive Brands and Products” space

“The Masters Room” is dedicated to DFS’ Master Series and is described as giving visitors a look into the retailer’s customer experiences. The area features selected bottles from the Masters of Wines and Spirits collection, in addition to jewelry and watches representing the Masters of Time collection.

Watches, jewelry and accessories showcase
Spirits and Wines showcase

The final area, called the “VIP Service Lounge,” aims to offer guests the DFS experience in a relaxing environment. Meant to reflect the luxury of the retailer’s members-only Loyal T Prestige Lounges, the room includes a bar stocked with champagne. It also features images of the Times DF x DFS Haikou Mission Hills Duty-Free Complex, the first phase of which opened in January in partnership with Shenzhen Duty Free Group.

VIP Service Lounge

Other LVMH brands present at the show include wines and spirits brand Moët Hennessy and Swiss watch brand Hublot. Hublot is part of the show’s Switzerland National Pavilion.

DFS chairman and ceo Benjamin Vuchot said: “Our intention in Hainan is to establish the most innovative stores in our global network, incorporating the latest retail technologies and avant-garde concepts to provide our valued customers with the most extraordinary luxury retail experiences.”

French retailer Galeries Lafayette is also present at the show. The retailer opened its first store in China in Beijing in 2013.

The Hainan Expo underlines an important message in building Hainan into an international tourism and consumption center. As a major partner at the expo, we hope to demonstrate our commitment to further develop business in this strategic region

L’Oréal Travel Retail Asia Pacific Managing Director Emmanuel Goulin

The Hainan hotspot at a glance

Hainan has been travel retail’s hotspot since the pandemic hit last year and Chinese consumers could no longer travel abroad. The Chinese government’s moves to build a free-trade port in Hainan and to make substantial increases in duty-free allowances last year has fueled growth in the travel-retail market in Hainan.

Last June, the government raised the per capita quota for offshore duty-free shopping from Rmb30,000 ($4,233) to Rmb100,000 ($14,110) a year, and importantly allowed Chinese consumers to buy and spend that budget 180 days after they return from their travels online.

The Rmb8,000 ($1,130.40) limit for a single tax-free purchase was lifted, while the number of categories with a single-purchase quantity limit was reduced and the duty-free goods category was also expanded.

Amberich International, owner of DutyFreeExpert integrated professional information platform for China’s travel retail industry, founder and general manager Jason Cao told the TFWA China Reborn conference in December last year that the Hainan offshore duty-free business was expected to grow steadily over the next three years, bringing China travel retail into a new era.

Sales in Hainan are forecast to reach Rmb100bn ($15bn) in 2022 and account for 17.5% of the travel-retail market. Total Chinese duty-free sales are forecast to reach Rmb180bn ($27bn), accounting for 30% of the global travel-retail market by 2022.

By comparison, global duty-free sales in 2019 were Rmb572.6bn ($87bn), with China accounting for 9.6% at Rmb55bn ($8.4bn) and South Korea 25.8% at Rmb147.8bn ($22bn). The global travel-retail market is estimated to reach Rmb600bn ($91bn) by 2022.

Cao said the development of new retail complexes would drive the growth of duty-free sales in Hainan. He added that there is still much room for growth given that the island was visited by 83 million people last year, of whom only 4.3% bought goods at duty-free stores.

LVMH Global Travel Retail Managing Director Gianluca Toniolo told BW Confidential last December that Hainan and the Chinese government’s aim to keep consumer spending inside China will mean a major shift between the travel-retail and domestic markets.

Talking about China’s growth, he said: “We believe that by 2025, the duty-free market in China will be three times the size it is today. Today, the duty-free market in China (all categories combined) is $7.5bn. Thanks to these new regulations in Hainan, we think that by 2025, the total Chinese duty-free market will be worth $22-23bn. Some 74-75% of those sales will be done in Hainan.”

Travel retailers’ Hainan push

In February, Swiss travel retailer Dufry opened the first phase of a downtown duty-free shop in collaboration with state-owned company of the Hainan Provincial Government Hainan Development Holdings (HDH). The store, located in Mova Mall in Hainan’s capital Haikou, opened in time for the Chinese Spring festival

The Global Duty Free (GDF) Plaza retails international and local brands across categories, including perfume and cosmetics. Customers can also pre-order products with a reserve online and pick-up in store service.

The GDF Plaza opening is the first phase of the Mova Mall complex, with more openings planned for the third quarter of 2021 and the first quarter of 2022. The full complex will span 38,920m2 (418,931ft2) over two buildings of the Mova Mall, called Aquarius and Capricorn.

For the project’s second and third opening phases, additional luxury and lifestyle brands will be added to the offer. Over 350 brands will be available at the project’s end.

Mova Mall is a major tourism and shopping center in Haikou’s city center and welcomed more than 22 million visitors in 2019.

Also in February, LVMH-owned travel retailer DFS and Shenzhen Duty Free Group opened the first phase of a new downtown duty-free retail complex in Haikou Mission Hills, Hainan.

In January, DFS and Shenzhen Duty Free announced a partnership to develop what it calls a 30,000m2 (32,2917ft2) retail experience in Hainan.

The first phase, called “The World in a Day,” incorporates elements from DFS locations in Venice, Paris, Sydney and Macau and is described as an immersive shopping experience. The store retails fashion, beauty and watches and jewelry, with more product assortments to be added in subsequent phases.

The complex will be completed in phases over the next two years and will result in the largest Beauty Hall in DFS’ global network.

Shenzhen Duty Free was awarded a license to operate an offshore downtown duty-free business in Haikou Mission Hills in Hainan. Mission Hills is described as an integrated eco-tourism resort that spans 100,000m2 (1,076,391ft2).

DFS has had a partnership with Shenzhen Duty Free since 2018, which involved DFS supplying merchandise and advising on store upgrades across Shenzhen Duty Free’s network. In August 2020, the travel retailer acquired a 22% stake in Shenzhen Duty Free Ecommerce Co, which is majority owned by Shenzhen Duty Free Group. DFS says it has had a presence in Hainan from 2005 to 2019.

At the end of last year, China National Service Corporation (CNSC) opened the new Sanya International Duty-Free Plaza. The Sanya International Duty-Free Plaza is on track to be completed in three to five years thanks to a two-phase development process. The plaza is located in the city’s business district Dadonghai, described as a seaside tourist area.

In December last year, France-based Lagardère Travel Retail partnered with Chinese state-owned Hainan Tourism Investment Development (HTID) to open a new large-scale duty-free operation in downtown Sanya, Hainan.

The travel retailer provided 278 brands for the duty-free complex’s opening day on December 30, 2020 spanning more than 30,000m2 (322,917.3ft2) over five floors. Over a dozen of the brands provided were new to Hainan, including Dyptique, Byredo, Gucci Makeup and Victoria’s Secret.

China Duty Free Group is to operate the retail space at the Haikou International Duty Free City, which is described as being the world’s largest duty-free retail complex when it opens in 2022.