Hisense wants to win in America

Updated: 2015-02-03 06:35

By Zheng Xin(China Daily USA)

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Despite its influence and positive market dominance in the Chinese market, Hisense, the Chinese multinational white goods and electronics manufacturer, said the US is the key region for the home appliance company to further foster its position as a global brand.

"In the past five years, the company has done a lot of hard work to build Hisense as a brand outside of China, especially in the markets of the US and European countries," said Lin Lan, vice president for Hisense.

Hisense wants to win in America

Lin Lan, vice president for Hisense

"The products of Hisense are available in more than 130 countries and regions globally, with no doubt that US being the market of most importance and lots of opportunities," he said.

According to Lin, the company also has a North America research and development center based in Atlanta, which has been building products right for the US consumers.

Despite that, for most Chinese companies, participating on the global stage especially the established markets like in the US proving a challenge, Hisense, headquartered in Qingdao, Shandong province, the state-owned enterprise with publicly traded subsidiaries, said the company is eyeing this goal.

"To achieve a better brand recognition in the US and further explore the developed countries' market, we are determined to bring out the best quality products instilled with innovation and the latest technology," said Lin.

"We have been doing that, and we have been successful."

According to the recently released Brandz™ Top 100 Most Valuable Chinese Brands 2015, Hisense was not only listed but also ranked seventh as Chinese company brand that derives the most revenue proportion overseas, after Lenovo, ZTE, Air China, PetroChina, TCL and China Eastern Airlines.

The company, whose brand value has increased 7 percent compared to last year, gains 30 percent of its revenue from overseas, said the report.

According to the report, the global expansion of Chinese brands depends on the determination of Chinese brands to shift from being manufacturers for western brands to being marketers of their own brands.

The expansion also depends on changing international consumer perception of Brand China, so that the country long associated with low-price merchandise is viewed as a source for reliable, value-added products and services, it said.

According to Lin, Hisense has taken part in several international Consumer Electronics Show (CES), the world's biggest gadget show in Las Vegas, and will introduce Hisense's innovative products through this channel.

According to Lin, CES is a great platform to show Hisense's brand, product and technology.

"We are very dedicated to CES every year, with our best products to show to the industry insiders and the customers," he said.

"Instead of follower, we targeted ourselves as leader of the industry, and it is believed through years of devotion to the further research and technology, we are getting closer every year."

According to Jerry Yang, co-founder and former CEO of search engine giant Yahoo, many Chinese technology companies are converting from the followers of Western technology to companies of innovation and leadership.

"For the Chinese entrepreneurs it's no longer ‘catching up', but focusing on the massive domestic Chinese market while innovating in accordance," said Yang.

The company has grown very quickly in the past few years in innovation, said Lin.

Hisense has also been promoting its brand recognition worldwide through sports sponsorship, including the sponsorship of the Australia Open, with an arena titled Hisense Arena.

"Our major product is TV, related a lot with sports, so we have been focusing on sports marketing in a lot of markets," he said.

"We need to find the right customers to talk to when it comes to marketing, rather than wasting our resources."

Lin said as a young brand, the company wants to focus on new technology, with which the customers age from 20 to 35 years old, who are technology sensitive and keen for different sports as well.

"Last year, we entered into some bigger sport, and we signed a three year contract with Schalke 04, one of the best soccer teams in Germany," said Lin.

"We also entered F1 sports, sponsoring three major races, one in Milan, one in the US, and one in Abu Dhabi."

However, the company is shooting for something even bigger this year, as the first Chinese sponsor of one of the most popular sports, NASCAR, mainly focusing on the young generation, the millennial.

"We are trying to convey to the consumers that we are a serious brand, a brand of social responsibility and corporate value, and we want to give the consumers a clear message, that Hisense brand is a new brand in the US, but we are determined to make a big one," said Lin.

"This is a business we want to push forward for many years."

Hisense was established in 1984 as Guangdong Shunde Pearl River Factory. It was renamed in 1992, listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange in 1996, and on the Shenzhen Stock Exchange in 1999.

It's a subsidiary of the SOE (State Owned Enterprise) Hisense Company Ltd., incorporated in 1979, in Qingdao.

Net income of Hisense Kelon Electrical Holdings Company, Ltd. for the first half of 2014 declined 13 percent to $99 million on revenue of $2.5 billion, a 19 percent gain.

For the full year 2013, net income leaped 77 percent to $202 million on 32 percent revenue rise to $3.9 billion.