Historical capital now thriving business center

By Published on .

Hangzhou, the capital of Zhejiang province, was one of China’s six ancient capitals, alongside Beijing, Xi’An, Nanjing, Luoyang and Kaifeng and has long been known as a top tourist destination for historical sights and its scenic West Lake district.

This charming, artistic city in the Yangtze River Delta has also parlayed its close proximity to Shanghai (just over 100 miles away) and manufacturing savvy in textiles, silk, machinery and light industry to develop white-collar jobs in the service and high-tech arena, attracting foreign investment from companies like United Technologies, General Motors, Merck, Motorola, Bosch, Siemens, Panasonic and Toshiba.

From 1995 to 2002, the city’s economy grew steadily at 12% annually. Now one of China’s largest and wealthiest cities, with a modern airport, above-average infrastructure and upscale shopping and real estate options, Hangzhou was ranked by Forbes as the No. 1 city in China for doing business in 2004.

“Along with the [tour group] crowds, thankfully, comes major tourism investment so that today, Hangzhou is filled with well-kept sights and a prosperous populace. The city is rapidly changing into a high-rise metropolis,” said Rita Chan, director, China for Nielsen Media Research in Shanghai. “The economic development level of Hangzhou is very high, its economic strength is continuously ranked second among all provincial capitals and its economic general strength is listed in the top ten among all the big-to-middle cities in China.”

“Hangzhou, Shanghai's ‘back yard,’ is a great test market, because it's rich but small, so media investment is limited and the entire province of Zhejiang is very business-driven. I always recommend Hangzhou for clients who don't have enough money to make a big initial splash or play it conservatively,” said Tom Doctoroff, JWT’s Shanghai-based area director, Northeast Asia & CEO, China.

Western hotel chains with properties in Hangzhou include the Hyatt Regency, Holiday Inn, Radisson Plaza, Regal, Sofitel, Intercontinental and the Shangri-La. Louwailou restaurant in Solitary Hill offers local dishes like Beggar's Chicken (baked in a clay pot) and West Lake fresh fish with a view of the West Lake. Kuiyuan restaurant is noted for its noodles, while Xi Le restaurant is especially popular for business dinners. Also try green tea from nearby Longjin village, famous throughout China. For European fare, the chain that runs Va Bene restaurants in Hong Kong and Shanghai opened a branch in Hangzhou at Xihu Tiandi.

Fast Facts: Hangzhou

Population: 6.52 million
GDP (2004): $30.3 billion
TV households (2004 est.): 484,000
Adspend (2004): $1.09 billion*
Adspend (2003): $0.94 billion*
Year-on-year increase: 16.9%
Adspend as a percentage of GDP (2004): 3.6%
Avg. min. viewed per day per viewer of all channels (aged 4+): 138.3
Basic cable subscription cost (per month): $1.69
*based on published rate card

Average cost of 30”spot during prime time on Hangzhou TV - Drama & Movie, the city’s most-watched local channel (based on published rate card)
18:10-19:00 – $783
19:10-20:30 - $759
21:00-21:30 – $1,084

Top 10 brands by adspend on TV (2004):
1. Oil of Olay (Procter & Gamble)
2. Rejoice (Procter & Gamble)
3. Head & Shoulders (Procter & Gamble)
4. Aoqili (Chinese toothpaste/oral hygiene)
5. Crest (Procter & Gamble)
6. Conba Pharm (Chinese OTC/ tonic/vitamin)
7. Safeguard (Procter & Gamble)
8. Hangzhou Tongji Clinic (Chinese professional services)
9. Gai Zhong Gai (Chinese tonic/vitamin)
10. Chiatai Pharm (Chinese OTC/ tonic/vitamin)
(Local channels only, based on rate card.)

Top 10 advertising categories on TV (2004)
1. Shampoo/conditioner
2. Tonic/vitamin
3. Skincare
4. Professional services
5. Oral hygiene
6. Soap
7. Chinese OTC
8. Cars
9. Cough/cold preparations
10. Stomach medicines
(Local channels only, based on rate card.)

Top 5 local channels by ad revenue:
1. Zhejiang TV - News & Variety (Satellite)
2. Zhejiang TV - Education
3. Zhejiang TV - Drama & Movie
4. Zhejiang TV - Qian Jiang
5. Hangzhou TV - Pearl

Sources: ACNielsen & Nielsen Media Research
Most Popular
In this article: