Pharma companies set to enter direct sales of nutritional supplements and beauty products?

Two A-share market-listed pharma companies, Xiangxue Pharma and Kangmei Pharma, announced this week that they had obtained licenses to conduct direct sales.Such licenses are under tight regulation for fear that they would be used to start pyramid schemes.
So far there are forty direct sales companies

Air pollution boosts companies in emissions analysis and filtration

It may just confirm what we already know — the smog is getting worse: China’s Meteorological Administration says that there were more smoggy days nationwide this year than anytime during the past 52 years. In Beijing, that includes half of the days in the month of October.As if number alone is not alarming enough, several media articles cropped up

Internet Poll on changing China’s strange public holiday system

While much of the world looks forward to official holidays that can be predicted years in advance, China’s annual muddle over the coming year’s holiday schedule has long been a reliable source of confusion. But yesterday the Holiday Office published three potential replacement schedules for public input “to make the official holiday schedule plann

Police bust PR companies for illegal deletion of news and social media postings

On December 5, the People’s Daily published a report about a police investigation into companies that offer services to delete news items and social media postings from the Internet. The article does not, of course, mention that the biggest deleter of information from the Internet is the government itself and that because of censorship and

Hybrid cars: BYD’s new Qin

In a confident move, BYD is offering 1,000 yuan to any driver that can beat the company’s pre-release Model Qin in 400-meter drag races. The Qin, a hybrid sedan, is being marketed mainly for two new features: a 0 to 100 km/h acceleration time of 5.9 seconds, and better fuel economy than most p

A Brief Guide to China’s Media Landscape

The table below shows mainland China’s most important websites, newspapers, and broadcast news organizations, together with numbers for website traffic, circulation and audience.The numbers are guesstimates based on media reports, listed companies’ public filings, media advertising rate cards, and Danwei interviews with media insiders. L

Li Xiaolai, Bitcoin millionaire

Hidden in a pedestrian-only lane in Beijing’s tech district of Zhongguancun, Cheku Café (车库咖啡厅) is not easy to find and appears to be an unassuming eatery like its neighbors. But if you climb up the dark staircase, you’ll blunder into what appears to be a university library: youngsters scattered around scores of desks in a large, cavernous room, ga

Low-cost drug list to transform pharmaceutical industry in China

Economic Information Daily (经济参考报), a business newspaper published by Xinhua News Agency, ran a story on November 17 reporting that the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) may soon release a list of drugs that must be sold at low prices in China with the aim of reducing the financial burden of medical care on citizens and hospitals. T

China Minsheng Bank to release high-interest debit card as competition heats up

Allied with Taobao and other online marketplaces, Chinese money market funds such as Yu’ebao are making inroads into markets traditionally dominated by banks (see previous Danwei post). Not only are these fund products more accessible for Internet users, their interest rates, usually hovering

Ping An strengthens online financing arm with launch of Zhong An Insurance

The launch ceremony of China’s first online liability insurer, Zhong An Insurance, on Wednesday was attended by three of China’s most prominent personalities, namely Jack Ma of Alibaba, Pony Ma (Ma Huateng) of Tencent, and Ma Mingzhe, president of Ping An Insurance. Although the only one of the three ope

Is Yili poised to gain from China’s milk shortage?

Yili, a leading Chinese diary brand, posted record quarterly revenues of 12.55 billion yuan for the third quarter of 2013. To put it in perspective, the number is more than the total revenues of Guangming, one of Yili’s domestic competitors, in the first three quarters of the year. Mengniu, another c

Occupy Central plans protests for Hong Kong democracy, questions remain

If Hong Kong doesn’t get universal suffrage guaranteed by next year, Hong Kong University law professor Benny Tai Yiu-ting plans on rallying 10,000 people to block the streets of downtown Hong Kong."We expect the police to shut us down because what we would be doing is illegal," Tai said in an interview at a deliberation day on October 26, 2013.

Chinese pharma companies rush to invest in hospitals

Following Guangzhou Bayunshan Pharma’s announcement that it plans to invest five billion yuan in high-end hospitals and a strong rally in the health care sector in China’s A-share market last week, several newspaper articles have appeared beating the drum for investing in so-called “private hospital concept stocks”.One such article appeared on Chin

Mobile banking: Minsheng bank punches above its weight

EnfoDesk, a Chinese market research company, published a report on China’s mobile phone banking sector. According to the report, bank transactions conducted via mobile phones in Q4 of 2013 reached just over 370 billion yuan, 35.90% higher than the previous quarter. Worth noting is that the study puts China Minsheng Bank in third position in the

Paper fights back against journalist arrest, Zoomlion alleged fraud back in spotlight

Guangzhou-based New Express ran a front page story today with a massive headline reading RELEASE HIM (请放人). The article requests the Changsha police authorities to release Chen Yongzhou (陈永洲), a journalist working for the newspaper who was arrested on October 19 at work. Changsha police officers had crossed provincial borders from Hunan to nab Chen

Does Vancl face a cash crunch?

Upstart Chinese clothing brand Vancl, a rising Internet star that aims to be Zara and Amazon rolled into one, has been the subject of a series of negative news reports. Of late, according to New Financial Observer (新金融观察报 ), a financial newspaper published in Tianjin, not only does the company owe suppliers great amounts of money, it has been delay

Baidu eyes Internet finance industry?

An article published by China Business News 第一财经日报 on October 17 claims to provide a glimpse into search giant Baidu’s ambitions to enter the Internet financial industry. The article quotes a source “close to the matter” who says that Baidu plans to launch three services soon, namely a credit service that provides loans to small and micro enterpris

Courier companies exposed selling delivery addresses to telemarketers

Economic Information Daily 经济参考报, a business newspaper managed by Xinhua News Agency, published an investigative story on  the business of selling names, addresses and contact information extracted from the addresses of senders and recipients on courier packages packages. Courier (kuaidi 快递)services

#ChinaEd a Global Education Hot Spot

In the past decade, China has been the driver of international student growth for much of the world. The most popular destination for Chinese students has been the United States. The US is, in fact, the leading destination for all foreign student intake worldwide.The trend in international education has been for years that students from poorer,

High Tech, Low Life – the movie

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Has China exaggerated the “Leftover Women” problem?

“My uncle tells me I’m the ‘monkey king of leftover women’,” confided Ms. Ma. An attractive technology manager with chunky turquoise jewelry, a pixie haircut, and an American graduate degree, Ms. Ma was chatting with me about dating in one of Shenzhen’s juice bars. “It’s a way of saying that I’m super-extra leftover,” she qualified with a chuckle.

The big, slick Buddha of Luoyang that looks like an entrepreneur

In late April a strange golden Buddha statue was erected in an amusement park in Luoyang, Henan province. With protruding belly, big smile and long ears, the statue in various ways resembled many other Buddha statues. Yet right at the top of the statue there was a fashion statement that is rarely seen