China is in the grip of a government-backed exercise boom, boosting local sportswear brands and the likes of Adidas and Nike, gaining market share on the back of consumer moving to athleisure” fashion trend.
Skechers, the California-headquartered sports brand that makes a variety of footwear, trainers, apparel and casual wear, is targeting $1.9 billion in retail sales in the China for 2018. This is optimism is due to rising popularity of sports and physical exercise among health-conscious.
Skechers will increase its outlets to over 3,000 in 2018 from around 2,500 in 2017. With the Chinese market making a significant contribution it is expected to see the sports industry expand to 3 trillion yuan, bringing more scope for retail industry to grow.
A report on the business climate conducted by the American Chamber of Commerce in China indicates good growth for 2018, driven by an expanding, Chinese middle-class. Analysts say Nike, Adidas and New Balance, which command higher prices than local brands, are viewed by many consumers more as fashion labels than sportswear.