By Hao Yalin, Levi J Parsons
SYDNEY, Nov. 2 (Xinhua) -- Career women who lead a fast-paced, stress-filled lifestyle will be the focus of Aussie vitamin giant Blackmores this week, when they head to Shanghai to take part in the second China International Import Expo (CIIE).
Buoyed by a thriving start-up sector, strong government support and widespread access to education opportunities, women now own 30.9 percent of all businesses in China, according to the Mastercard Index of Women Entrepreneurs, putting Chinese women far ahead of other Asian economic powerhouses like Singapore (29.2 percent) and Japan (17.6 percent).
But in order to better understand the needs of China's surging female workforce, the health supplement manufacturer began a research project with Tsinghua University in December 2018.
"One of the reasons we did that research is because ... the group (career women) is sometimes not that well understood, about what their lifestyle is like, what stresses they face, but also what is the nutrition needs that they have," Peter Osborne, Blackmores managing director in Asia, told Xinhua in a recent exclusive interview.
Surveying around 1,000 career-orientated women across numerous major cities in China, Osborne said the findings were very interesting and highlighted how many working women are not only managing their career but also supporting their family, supporting their children and parents.
"We feel, there is a need to support that group of people as much as we can and make sure they understand what they can do for their own health and well-being," he said.
Seeing common problems such as stress, lack of sleep and vitamin D deficiency affecting many working women in China, Osborne said "the CIIE gives us a great opportunity to promote those products (which may help), but also to discuss those products with people who visit the exhibition."
Opening a wholly-owned foreign enterprise in Beijing just seven years ago, Blackmores now have a 140 million U.S. dollar per year business in China with offices in Shanghai, Guangzhou, Chengdu and Hangzhou, that employ over 60 staff.
With sales growing at a rapid rate of more than 20 percent over the past 12 months, Osborne said last year's CIIE, "really helped us to get a lot more people to understand the Blackmores brand, and understand what our ambitions are - to help with the health and well-being of people in China."