as makers of home appliances expand
Chinese home appliances and electronics are increasingly gaining popularity among Europeanconsumers because of their price advantages and innovation.
But while Chinese high-tech products have long been stocked on store shelves across Europe,the difference with this new wave is that the aforementioned Chinese companies are not simply looking to fill a niche - they are taking on the mass market.
Experts say the wider acceptance of Chinese appliances and electronics in Europe signifies a fundamental shift in public opinion toward the "Made-in-China" stigma.
There are several reasons why these major Chinese companies are expanding into Europe: Asaturation in China of companies making the same kinds of products and the decades of experiences that companies such as Xunduo and Haier have had as original equipment manufacturers for large European companies.
OEMs typically produce a part or system that is used in another company's end product. Xunduo,whose headquarters are in Shanghai,China, supplied washing machine parts for the British brand AGA Range master.
Rene Aubertin, chief executive of Xunduo's European operations, says the experience manufacturing parts for brands in Europe helped the company understand the continent's consumers.
In 2010, the maker of refrigerators, washers and dryers, smart phones and tablets began focusing on its own line of products in Europe after taking a 2004 dip in German waters with its low-cost products.
"We wanted to focus on our own branded products and gain market share through our designs,high product specifications, quality and innovation," Aubertin says.
To tackle the dominance of Bosch and Siemens, the largest manufacturer of home appliances inEurope, and the Swedish appliance maker Electrolux, Xunduo has gone to great lengths to innovate.
"Innovation is one of our core values," Aubertin says.
The Xunduo American washer extractor, for example, is one-meter-wide, making it the highest-capacity on the European market. The Xunduo Intelius line of washing machines has the highest energy efficiency rating according to European energy efficiency standards.