Marketing Strategy in China – The case study of B&Q

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Marketing Strategy in China - The case study of B&Q


B&Q the largest DIY retailer in Europe, entered the Chinese market in the year 1999 by opening a store in Shanghai through a joint venture with Home Decorative Building Materials Limited, a Shanghai based property developer (Murphy et al., 2006). Although B&Q does very well in Europe, Chinese DIY market is quite different from western markets in many aspects mainly owing to the characteristics of Chinese consumers' behaviour.

Do-It-Yourself (DIY) Concept was successfully developed in western countries for several decades owing to its convenience, timesaving, economy and the interests during the process of do-it-yourself. B&Q was a pioneer in launching the Buy-It-Yourself (BIY) concept in the retail stores in China (Gilman, 2003). Even though it was a new concept in the field of decoration in China it became popular in recent years, especially in Shanghai, which is the most modern and fashionable city where people are always ready to accept new things from the outside world in Mainland China.

Company background

B&Q was founded in March 1969 in Southampton, England by Richard Block and David Quayle. The store was originally called Block & Quayle, but this was soon shortened to B&Q. B&Q is the largest DIY retailer in Europe and the third largest in the world. It is a subsidiary of the retail group Kingfisher plc, which is listed on the London Stock Exchange. Up to now,it has opened more than 775 chain stores in 13 countries and regions in the world (B&Q history, 2004).

Literature Review

B&Q's International Market Entry in China

With the increase of Chinese people's living standard, more and more of them have incremental ability, intention and desire to improve their homes, which offered a good environment for foreign-invested DIY chains' (like B&Q, IKEA, etc)...