Mailman X Business Weekly | January 25th

Mailman X Business Weekly | Jan 25

Here’s China’s top tourism business news that you need to know from this week:

Latest WeChat Update Hints at its “Operating System” Update

China’s super messaging app WeChat rolled out an update earlier this week allowing users to find and use its download-free mini-programs more easily in an experience like what’s offered in an operating system. With the update, a window resembling a smartphone’s home screen is displayed when swiping down from within the app. The embedded applications also have been made directly searchable from the window, with WeChat adding a mini-program search bar.

Mailman Take:

Tencent doubles down on their “new” mini-programs by creating a clear design making them more accessible to users.  This comes as no surprise as WeChat Mini-programs attracted 4.3 Billion Yuan of funding in 2018 alone which was 6x more than in 2017.  Growth doesn’t look to stop as 2019 is sure to bring even more Mini-Programs focused on e-commerce and services with this idea of social commerce as the next big thing to hit China.

Also this week:

Digital Ad Spends to Grow Significantly in APAC in 2019

As a whole, the Asia Pacific will continue to be a leading contributor to global ad spend growth this year, contributing 42 percent of the global increase. Digital remains the dominant force in ad spend and is forecast to cross the 40 percent mark for the first time in 2019, it adds. Globally speaking, mobile will remain the fastest growing platform and is forecast to grow by 19.2 percent in 2019. Read more here.

Mobike officially about to change its name to Meituan Bike

Mobike grew quickly into becoming the world’s largest bike-sharing service, rapidly expanding into more than 200 cities across 19 countries around the world thanks to hundreds of millions of dollars in cash from investors. Beyond just a name change, this name change will officially put Mobike within the Meituan ecosystem, further creating an ecosystem for digital buy to reach a certain target audience.  Read more here

China’s tourism to France sees upgrade with more focus on the travel experience

China is the third biggest tourist source country for Paris after the United States and Britain with a total of 1.1 million trips in 2017. It is expected to climb to 2 million in about five years, Christophe Decloux, managing director of Paris Region Tourism Board, told Xinhua in a recent interview. Read more here.

Hilton and IHG Accelerate Expansion in China

According to Hilton, they are planning to manage 1,000 hotels in China by 2025. Seizing the “China opportunity” unleashed by a consumption upgrade is seen as a common reason for hotel management giants to favor the Chinese market. Read more here.

Learning from China’s Digital Disruptors

Chinese digital giants forge into banking, in 2017 Alibaba issued SME loans amounting to 30% of all loans issued by the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China.  From its early days in Chinese e-commerce, Alibaba saw the need for digital money to alleviate the inconveniences of collecting cash on delivery because credit card penetration was poor. Alibaba’s solution: a digital wallet, Alipay. The wallet allowed customers to deposit money in lump sums, then use that balance for the real-time purchases needed for seamless e-commerce. Read more here.

Is China’s Hottest Video App, Douyin, the New WeChat for Luxury?

The latest statistics released by Douyin CEO Zhang Nan (张楠) on January 15 indicated the app’s number of daily active users (DAU) reached 250 million and the monthly active users exceeded 500 million. Previous data also showed around 60 percent of Douyin users are female, and about 70 percent of them reside in China’s top-tier cities. Read more here.

And Just for Fun…

6 Year Old Kid from China Takes the internet by Storm with his Professional Haircutting Skills

According to Mail Online, Jiang has been learning the art from the age of four. At first, he had to be assisted by his colleagues at the salon bit now, he serves his clients all by himself.  The talented boy has a staggering 1.5 million followers on short video app Kuaishou. Read more and watch the video here.


Mailman X is a China digital consulting agency for the travel industry. Reach out here for more information.