Tesco late breaking China

Rather as one might expect if Scarlett Johansson turned up three hours after the Oscars began, there has been a lot of brouhaha today about the opening of the first Tesco-branded store in China. Early reports suggest that while the live turtles and sheeps feet are trading briskly, the solitary aisle of novelty British produce - including baked beans, sage and onion stuffing and brown sauce - is pretty much deserted. The wisdom of Confucius apparently lives on in the heart of the modern Chinese shopper.

Here at MT, we wouldn't wish to understate the importance of foreign expansion for Tesco as it battles Wal-Mart and Carrefour on the world stage. But we can't help thinking that all those other major British firms who have been trading in China under their own names for a decade or more - of which B&Q is but the first to spring to mind - must be wondering what all the fuss is about. Oh, the perils of superstore superstardom…

Last Updated: 06 Nov 2012

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