Davos 2018: Consumption in China



Bruno Lannes, a partner in Bain's Consumer Products practice, talks about the firm's latest research on the growth of consumption in China, as well as the opportunities available at the World Economic Forum's annual meeting to discuss the topic with companies and governments.

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BRUNO LANNES: We could not dream of a better setting to present our work, the work that we've been doing with the World Economic Forum for the past few months. We are fortunate to be able to present this work in Davos because we have here, for a few days, all the decision makers that can really make a difference and an impact on China consumption. We have, of course, government representatives, we have policymakers, we have CEOs of the largest companies and we have CEOs of the largest Chinese companies. And so having a chance to present this work and get their input will be really critical.

In the work, we still leave a lot of options and questions open, and I think the chance we have to present it in Davos with such an audience is to really get input and to get their participation [into] the thinking. We will have questions around inclusive growth, of course. We will have questions about the middle-income trap. We will ask questions about data privacy. All of these are coming from the growth of consumption in China, but there are still a lot of unanswered questions, and we are hoping to be able to address them and go to the next level during our debate.

I'm hoping to hear [from] companies and governments and how they're going to work together, especially in China, given all the issues that we are addressing with the growth of consumption. We are looking for public-private partnerships, for example, in the area of data privacy, which I think is a key critical area in China. We're also looking for public-private partnerships in the area of environmental protection, because as we grow consumption, there will be some impact on the environment and sustainability. And so these would be critical next steps that we are looking forward to.

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