LONDON, United Kingdom – UK sleep and skincare brand This Works is staking a claim for major growth in eastern markets as it debuts a new store on China’s Alibaba Tmall Global platform this week.
Launched in 2014, Tmall Global is an extension of the Alibaba Group Tmall platform, built to cater for growing Chinese consumer demand for international products and brands.
It has increasingly provided western brands with a route to reach Chinese consumers, build brand awareness and gain valuable consumer insights in the eastern market without the need for physical operations in the country.
Now, with the launch of a dedicated store on the platform, This Works’ CEO Dr Anna Persaud believes the company is primed for rapid growth, having previously seen high demand for its range of pillow sprays sold via a distributor in China in 2019.
“We are thrilled to be launching into Tmall Global, expanding our footprint in the wellness industry in China,” she said, commenting on the digital store opening.
“There is a huge opportunity in China and an appetite to invest in sleep health in this market, so we are confident This Works products will be received well and make a difference helping people sleep better.”
Since 2004, This Works has sold more than nine million deep sleep pillow sprays and at last year’s 11.11 Global Shopping Festival in China, the company reported a 42% year-on-year growth in growth merchandise value (GMV) during the period.
Tmall Global also reported a 250% increase in sleep management sales during the festival, echoing Alibaba’s latest Tmall Healthcare Trend Report, which found products addressing a lack of sleep increased by 220% in 2021.
Zarina Kanji, Tmall Business Development and Marketing at Alibaba Group UK and Nordics, acknowledged that the pandemic has sharpened Chinese consumer’s focus on health and wellbeing, with special attention paid to improving the quality of sleep.
“The pandemic highlighted that good health is something we all covet and consumers are placing greater value on health and wellness than material objects as we all want to be healthy and happy. That means taking care of our holistic wellness,” she said, commenting on the This Works Tmall Global store.
“A big part of this is improving our quality of sleep. As a result, sleep has become the number one health priority in China and around this we are seeing a large opportunity for products that appeal to the ‘sleep economy.”
The launch of the new Tmall Global store, a company statement read, will enable This Works to sell a wider range and variety of its sleep-enhancing products.
To celebrate, the company is re-releasing its classic Sleep Plus Pillow Spray product, a fast-acting, motion-activated sleep spray for restless sleepers, including 99% natural essential oils, shown to help restore normal sleep patterns.
Beyond the sleep category, British brands Vitabiotics and SOLV have notably enjoyed success in China, with the Vitabiotics seeing 30-40% annual growth in the market since launching in 2015.
With China representing the second largest wellness market globally after the US – and accounting for around half of all ecommerce activity across the globe – British brands will undoubtedly hope to follow This Works’ lead and tap into an economy estimated to be worth north of $683 billion.