Big,bold & beautiful
By LU HAOTING (China Daily)
Updated: 2006-04-03 06:04
If you think high fashion is only for tiny, skinny women, then think again.
At long last, the Chinese fashion industry is finally doing something to cater
to full-figured consumers.
A small fashion show for plus-size women is expected to cause a stir at the
upcoming 14th China International Clothing & Accessories Fair in Beijing
Yang Fengjun and Ma Weibin, owners of Beijing Pangpangshow
Clothing & Accessories Co Ltd, are busy decorating their 72-square metre
booth at the China International Exhibition Centre, printing catalogues and
handouts, taking pictures of pleasantly plump models sporting their latest
designs, and hiring professionals to coach them on how to show off on the
catwalk. Yang and Ma have spent nearly 1 million yuan (US$124,224) on their
largest show since they entered the plus-size women's clothing business eight
"This fair is the largest fashion event in Asia. We want to show everybody
what we have been promoting over the past several years and push China's
plus-size fashion industry forward," Ma says.
"Our business fills an important niche by recognizing the fashion needs of
women who have been largely ignored in the marketplace."
Size shouldn't matter, but it does for two clever
enterpreneurs who have found their
Facts and figures:
name: Beijing, Pangpangshow Clothing & Accessories Co Let
employees: 110-190, depending on the season
Annual sales: Over 10
million yuan (US$1.2 million) in 2005
Output: Over 200,000 units in
Number of outlets: Six in Beijing, with about 200 franchisees and
retailers throughout China
particularly confident about future business prospects because of increasing
levels of obesity and eating disorders that have plagued individuals throughout
Chinese consumers are experiencing higher standards of living than ever
before, but all the rich food that goes along with that is taking its toll on
waistlines across the country. Chinese people are rapidly getting fatter and
More than 200 million people are overweight, or about 15 per
cent of the nation's population. Nearly 7 per cent of the population, or 90
million people, are considered obese. In urban areas, up to 30 per cent of
people are overweight, while 12.3 per cent are considered obese. Analysts
estimate that over 200 million people will be struggling with obesity issues
within the next 10 years.
Excessive meat consumption and high calorie foods are largely to blame.
(For more biz stories, please visit Industry Updates)