Shaun Rein

Multinationals are increasingly losing markets to local competitors, says business analyst Shaun Rein, author of The War for China’s Wallet: Profiting from the New World Order to Bloomberg, and founder of the China Market Research Group. “Multinationals underestimated local competition,” said Shaun Rein.


Asia traditionally was considered easy money for Western multinationals, with beverage makers, cigarette brands and fast-food giants capitalizing on rising incomes and weak local competitors. A survey by China Market Research Group in 2011 showed 85 percent of Chinese consumers preferring foreign brands.

Those days are over. That preference dropped by half last year, and it goes beyond China: brands of Indian toothpaste, Vietnamese laundry detergent and Japanese flavored water are picking up market share with lower prices and by catering to local tastes. Rising stars such as Indonesia’s Luwak instant coffee and China’s Pechoin moisturizers spell trouble for global titans at a time when Asia-Pacific’s economic growth is projected to outpace the world’s through 2019.

“Multinationals underestimated local competition,” said Shaun Rein, managing director for China Market Research Group. “Local players have moved very fast on emerging trends that multinationals have missed, like healthy and e-commerce.”

More in Bloomberg.

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