With the entire world now battling it out in the consumer arena, the number of innovations aimed at consumers from Brazil to Belgium is staggering. Case in point: the dozens of smart brands and innovations from ’emerging’ markets.
As mentioned yesterday in 50+ must see consumer innovators and innovations worldwide, throughout the end of 2010, I will be featuring consumer innovators and innovations from across the globe. Take advantage of what has proven successful to see if these ideas have merit and value to help grow your own brand awareness and fatten your business bottom line.
From aggressive Chinese brands to Turkish creatives to Brazilian apparel, trendwatching.com says there is a sharp increase in world-class companies that can and will compete for consumers’ Dollars, Reais, Euros, Pounds, Rupees, Rands, or Liras.
Rise of the Rest
Have no fear. Growing innovation across the globe does not mean then end to ingenuity in the west. It does mean that consumers have taken to some great off-the-wall ideas from other countries, such as China and India as featured below:
In 2010 sportswear brand Li Ning pulled equal with Adidas as the number two sports brand after Nike in China. Last year it released an eco-friendly shoe called the “Green 001”. The shoe is made from eco-friendly materials such as hemp, and the marketing campaign communicates to Chinese consumers that “Environmental Protection = Trendy”. The tongue of the shoe is embroidered with the image of Wangari Muta Maathai, the founder of the Green Belt Movement and the first environmentalist to win the Nobel Peace Prize.
Sportswear brand Anta Sports has grown in five years to nearly RMB 6 billion (USD 882m) in 2009. The company also secured one of the biggest deals in women’s tennis, sponsoring Jelena Jankovic.
Bosideng is the largest down apparel company in China with 5,620 retail outlets in more than 65 cities across the nation. In 2009 it ranked 160th on the list of the “World’s Most Reputable Companies” and 13th on the “Most Valuable Chinese Brands” list.
Founded in 2002, 361 Degrees International is a Chinese supplier of shoe and sports goods. The brand attained 4.2% market share of sportswear sales in 2009, ranking it the eighth-largest brand in the category.
Peak Sport is a Chinese sportswear company that has expanded from its founding in 1989 to offering over 5,500 retail outlets in China, supported by a range of international sponsorship deals including national soccer and basketball teams around the world and a selection of NBA players in the US.
Regarded as the first Chinese luxury brand, NE Tiger has become a global leader in haute couture for furs, evening gowns and wedding clothes. The brand has studios across the United States, France, Italy and Russia.
In September 2010, telecoms giant Huawei released the Ideos, an affordable smartphone preloaded with Google’s Android operating system. The Ideos is the first smartphone designed by a Chinese company and intended for the global market, with releases expected in Europe, North America, Latin America and Asia.
Launched in May 2010, the Umeox is a solar powered, waterproof, shockproof and dustproof mobile phone.
Beijing-based architects MAD Architectural Design Studio are developing the 400,000 square meter Sanya Phoenix Island in Hainan, China. Upon completion, the CNY 3 billion development will feature six luxury apartment buildings, a five-star hotel, conference center and a signature seven-star hotel. On top of that, their Fake Hills housing development will be located along the coast near Beihai. The designs feature towers in the shape of amoeba-like hills, referencing the hills in the local area and low-rise buildings on the water-side.
Xtep is a major player in the Chinese sportswear market. In January 2010, the brand secured a five year, GBP 7 million kit sponsorship deal with English Premier League club Birmingham City.
Since 2009, Tata Cars have provided the world’s cheapest car (USD 2,200) the Tata Nano. The automaker reportedly has plans to rollout an electric version of the vehicle in 2011.
Part of Tata, Taj Hotels Resorts and Palaces own and operate 76 hotels (including The Pierre, in New York City, pictured above), 7 palaces, 6 private islands and 12 resorts. The group’s reach spans 52 destinations, 12 countries, 5 continents and employs 13,000 people.
In 2009, Tata also announced the Shubh Griha brand. The company’s first project was to build 1,250 tiny apartments outside Mumbai that sold for USD 7,800 to USD 13,400 each. The second project, begun in October 2010, will see the construction of a further 1,250 low-cost apartments in the Vasind suburb of Mumbai. The homes are targeted at people earning an annual salary of USD 6,000 to USD 10,000. The average call center employee with 10 to 20 years experience earns about USD 6,400 a year.
And yet another Tata innovation: the Swach is a water filter and purifier that produces clean drinking water through the use of common ash. The portable purifier doesn’t require running water or electricity.
Last Tata-owned example: Ginger Hotels, a low cost hotel chain aimed at travelers with rooms costing between INR 1,000 and INR 2,999. Ginger hotels currently operates 23 hotels in India, with 50 more planned for future development.
Mumbai-based Mirakle Couriers only hires deaf workers for deliveries. The company places a heavy emphasis on the training – right down to the finer points of professional grooming, and has grown dramatically since its late 2008 launch. Its client list now includes Johnson Controls, Bain Capital and the Indian Hotels Company.
One Billion Minds is a prize-led innovation platform that connects problem-solving scholars with solution-seeking companies and non-profits. Launched in late 2009 by Sanjukt K. Saha in Kolkata and London, One Billion Minds challenges student and alumni crowds from universities worldwide to come up with innovative solutions to real-world problems. Prizes from the participating corporations include cash, professional recognition, and opportunities to interview for full-time or internship positions.
IndiGo is a low-cost airline servicing 22 destinations across South Asia. The company is looking to expand rapidly, with 100 Airbus aircraft expected to arrive in 2015 and plans to add another 150 to the fleet by 2025.
Meanwhile, low-cost carrier SpiceJet is the most profitable airline in the country and has attained the second largest market share in the low cost category. The airline has won a host of awards since inception in 2005 including Outlook Travellers’ “Best Low Cost Airline” in 2009/2010.
And of course there’s Kingfisher, which has attained 26% market share within just four years of operation. The airline now flies 400 times daily to 69 Indian destinations.
Designed by Vibhor Sogani, the Chroma Chandeliers collections have won various awards.
Mahindra Tractors (M&M) is one of the top three tractor companies in the world; it operates in 10 countries, and is number one in sales in India – the largest tractor market in the world. Exports during the month of September 2010 were 1,181 units, as against 627 units for the same period last year, an increase of 88%. The company launched 13 new models in the US for 2011, including models suitable for basic tasks, as well as more substantial vehicles for landscaping.
New Delhi-based Mega Car Pool is a travel matching service that rewards drivers for giving rides.
Consumer electronics and home appliance giant Videocon employs over 5,000 people and has an annual turnover of USD 2 billion, making it one of the largest consumer electronics and home appliance companies in the country. The group has 17 manufacturing sites in India and plants in China, Poland, Italy and Mexico.
There’s still plenty more to come. Tomorrow’s article will feature global consumer innovators and innovations from Malaysia and Turkey.
For more information: 50+ must see consumer innovators and innovations worldwide
For more information: trendwatching.com
For new business development ideas: Gillean Smith: Proven Business Methods (http://gilleansmith.wordpress.com/)