In the next 5 years, China will become the world's fastest-growing traditional toy and game product market
CNN reported on January 21 that China has been the world's toy factory for decades, producing large quantities of toys sold overseas. Today this has not changed. China still accounts for 75% of the world's toy production. But in the past five years, mainland Chinese manufacturers have begun to sell products to a new target customer group-lower-income Chinese consumers. Yes, China itself is becoming a big consumer of toys. Market research firm Euromonitor International said that since 2008, China's toy and game product retail sales have grown at an annual rate of about 13%, and total sales in 2013 have approached 20 billion U.S. dollars. In the next five years, China will become the world's fastest-growing traditional toy and game product market, and it will grow by 57% by 2018. John Liu, the marketing director of a toy company in China, said that he realized for the first time two years ago that there are strong sales opportunities in the country. In 2013, his company launched products for mainland China, and the first year sales reached 500,000 U.S. dollars. Liu said this is not puzzling: Chinese parents now need better and safer toys. Industry insiders say that many people underestimate the purchasing power of low-income groups in China. More importantly, they underestimated the latter's wealth in the next three to five years. There are about 850 million working-class people in China with a monthly salary of less than US$500. But with their income growing at an annual rate of 15%, they have more disposable income than before. Toys are not expensive, and low-income Chinese can afford them. But they are enough to show off. Therefore, some Chinese people (probably) do not buy designer handbags, but buy Lego toys for their families. Experts believe that the time for the growth of the Chinese toy market is ripe. In 2013, the annual per capita (toy) expenditure of Chinese children was only 41 U.S. dollars. In contrast, Japan is $345. As the mainland relaxes its one-child policy, the Chinese toy market will only increase unabated.