High fashion gains a foothold in China

July 23, 2012 at 2:17 PM
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BEIJING, July 23 (UPI) -- A growing middle class in China is supporting demand for fashion, even expensive fashion, media experts said.

The general manager of Hearst Magazines in China, Lena Yang, said the average fashion magazine reader in the country is 29.5 years old, single, and earns $1,431 per month.

Surprisingly to some, that same reader spends an average of $938 per season on watches, $982 on handbags and shoes and $1,066 on clothes, The New York Times reported Monday.

Yang said another demographic factor supported the typical reader's relatively lavish lifestyle, which is that, "most of them, they are a single child," she said.

That means they often live at home, so they do not pay rent. They also had up to six other adults, including parents and grandparents, contributing to their fashion needs.

China is now the sixth largest market for luxury goods and fashion magazines are riding the crest of that wave.

The demand for advertising has pushed Cosmopolitan, Vogue and Elle in China to either split issues in half or add more editions per year. Elle had grown to 700 pages before editors decided to go to two issues per month.

"We never take anything for granted. But so far this year, we look like we're having a pretty good year of growth," Duncan Edwards, president and chief executive officer of Hearst Magazines International told the Times.

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