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ALIPAY AND NIELSEN REPORT: EMBRACING MOBILE PAYMENTS KEY TO ATTRACTING CHINESE TOURISTS

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ALIPAY AND NIELSEN REPORT: EMBRACING MOBILE PAYMENTS KEY TO ATTRACTING CHINESE TOURISTS

Nielsen and Alipay today jointly issued Outbound Chinese Tourism and Consumption Trends: 2017 Survey, providing in-depth analysis and deeper insights into the current consumption and payment behavior of Chinese tourists overseas, as well as assessing future trends.

According to the survey, a growing number of Chinese tourists expect they will utilise mobile payment methods when travelling, bringing their cashless lifestyle overseas.

Outbound Chinese tourism has enjoyed explosive growth over the past decade, and this trend has continued. China National Tourism Administration statistics show that Chinese tourists made 131 million trips overseas in 2017, an increase of 7% from 2016. Amongst these, Chinese tourists continue to increase spending during their trips. Data from the International Association of Tour Managers shows that overseas travel spending by Chinese tourists reached USD 261.1 billion in 2016, an increase of 4.5% year-on-year, and ranking first worldwide.

As European travel routes become better developed for Chinese tourists, nearly 40% of respondents traveled there last year. However the report finds that the UK is lagging behind France when it comes to attracting Chinese tourists. While France was the 10th most visited country in the world by Chinese tourists, the UK missed out on a top ten position.

Ease of payments is also a leading factor when it comes to key purchase decisions for Chinese tourists:

  • During their most recent overseas trip, 65% of Chinese tourists paid for their expenses via mobile payment, while a mere 11% of their non-Chinese counterparts used mobile payments.
  • Meanwhile, 91% sampled claimed they would show greater willingness to spend and shop if overseas merchants accepted Chinese mobile payments.
  • Chinese tourists primarily use mobile payments for shopping, dining and purchasing entry tickets to tourist attractions when traveling overseas.
  • Chinese tourists primarily use mobile payments for shopping, dining and visits to tourist attractions when traveling overseas.

Other Key findings of the survey include:

Chinese tourism presents a lucrative opportunity for businesses:

  • Chinese tourists who took part in the survey visited 2.1 countries or regions in 2016-2017, and expect to visit an average of 2.7 countries or regions in 2018. Chinese tourists exhibit stronger purchasing power than non-Chinese tourists, spending an average of over £500 per person towards shopping on their most recent overseas trip. Non-Chinese tourists comparatively spend an average of less than £350.
  • As European travel routes become better developed for Chinese tourists, nearly 40% of respondents traveled there last year. However, while France was the 10th most visited country in the world by Chinese tourists, the UK missed out on a top ten position.

 Price is not a decisive factor when choosing travel destinations or tourist attractions:

  • When selecting travel destinations and tourist attractions, Chinese tourists care most about the beauty and uniqueness of tourist attractions (56%), followed by the local environment, which includes safety (47%), ease of visa procedures (45%) and friendliness of locals to tourists (35%). As disposable income continues to grow, cost is only the 5th biggest consideration for Chinese tourists.
  • In comparison, cost is the second biggest factor for non-Chinese tourists, the report uncovered.

Li Wang, Head of Alipay EMEA, Ant Financial commented, “If UK merchants are to embrace the opportunities that come with increased tourism from China, it’s crucial that they get into the mindset of Chinese travellers. Providing products and services that are suited to their preferences is the best way for businesses including shops, restaurants, hotels and entertainment providers to market to Chinese tourists. But as this research shows, how they purchase is as significant as what they purchase for many Chinese tourists. When travelling, Chinese nationals expect the ease and simplicity of seamless, instant mobile payments, which they have access to at home; consequently UK merchants that embrace mobile payments will have more appeal to Chinese customers.”

Vishal Bali, Managing Director of Nielsen China said, “China has embraced mobile payments faster than any country, and will continue to lead the global charge in this regard. Mobile payment is on the rise globally, and will continue to support greater connectivity and efficiency across the commercial ecosystem.”

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Can a leader’s level of enthusiasm and optimism really impact the bottom line?

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Can a leader’s level of enthusiasm and optimism really impact the bottom line? 1

By Mark E. Brouker, Captain, United States Navy, founder of Brouker Leadership Solutions

Can a leader’s level of enthusiasm and optimism really impact the bottom line? We hear of the leader’s ability to influence others in powerful ways in politics, academia, sports, among other areas. However, in business, profitability is where the rubber meets the road.  How impactful is the leader’s level of enthusiasm and optimism in creating a healthy bottom line?

One of the truly remarkable and rewarding tours of duty I had during my Navy career was with a small group of highly motivated doctors and pharmacists from all three services – Army, Navy, and Air Force. These professionals were all hand-picked to join a newly-formed team which was directed to reduce the escalating cost of prescription medications provided for all Department of Defense (DoD) active duty (Army, Navy and Air Force) and family members. Our task was made more challenging because we were to reduce costs without decreasing quality of care. At that time, there were over eight million men, women, and children eligible for prescription medications throughout DoD. The annual cost was over five billion dollars and climbing fast.

Our boss, Dan, was a brilliant, hard-working, and extremely passionate leader who was highly respected by all. Dan cared for us and we cared for him. We were a tight group. We treated each other as family. Dan’s passion was contagious, and he quickly established a culture of caring, hard work and trust. We were poised for success. Because I was senior to other members of the team, Dan selected me to be his deputy.

The idea of creating a small team to bend the cost curve for the entire DoD pharmacy benefit was novel – it had never been tried before. While the team shared a genuine passion for this noble and ambitious undertaking, early wins were few and far between.

After the 6-month honeymoon period ended, enthusiasm was slowly replaced with frustration.  Every morning we’d meet with Dan to share the progress or, more accurately, lack of progress with our respective projects. It was slow and insidious at first, but sarcasm, frustration and pessimism crept into the meetings. A few of the more vocal naysayers would spew their negative venom and Dan and I would make meager attempts to mitigate the damage, or in times of weakness simply join in. These meetings frequently went much longer than scheduled, drained everyone of energy, and were generally recognized to be a waste of time. In short, neither Dan nor I led these meetings. We attended them. One could feel the energy, passion and trust dissipate like air leaking from a balloon.

Mark E. Brouker

Mark E. Brouker

It was clear that Dan and I needed to change our attitudes. We candidly discussed the culture of pessimism that we were creating and, more importantly, how it was sucking trust and the creative juices from the team. Over a handshake, we agreed to help each other curb our negativity and celebrate small victories that were indeed happening. We’d address the challenges, but not mire in them. We agreed to not let anyone hijack the meeting with their negativity.

We were more careful in the words we chose – we rid ourselves of cynical remarks. We were careful with our body language. No scowling or worried looks. Above all, we focused on staying positive. We’d invest a few minutes before meetings to reflect on past successes, however minor, and mention them at the beginning of the meeting. We’d then address the challenges, and close each meeting with a reminder, once again, of past successes.

Frustration and pessimism were slowly replaced with enthusiasm and optimism. Wins starting coming. More wins followed. Within 2 years, our small team was saving DoD over $100 million annually with no reduction in quality. Our small team was recognized within the industry as a center of excellence. Our success was nothing less than stunning.

How did this happen? It turns out that Dan’s and my behaviors had a much more profound impact on our team members than we could have ever imagined. In fact, studies have shown that the leader’s level of enthusiasm and optimism directly impacts their team members level of enthusiasm and optimism. Why is this the case? A study by Gallup found that employees who are supervised by highly enthusiastic leaders are 59 percent more likely to be enthusiastic than those supervised by unenthusiastic leaders.[1] In other words, the leader’s behaviors, in this case optimism and enthusiasm, are contagious. Further, studies have indeed shown that businesses led by enthusiastic and optimistic leaders were significantly more profitable than those led by apathetic and pessimistic leaders. [2] [3]

Can a leader’s level of enthusiasm and optimism really impact the bottom line? Unquestionably the answer is yes. The leader’s ability to influence in politics, academia, sports and yes, profitability in business, is profound. Those businesses led by leaders who understand, respect, and embrace the strong correlation between the leader’s level of enthusiasm and optimism as it relates to performance and profits – and most importantly practice these behaviors – are at a distinct competitive advantage.

Be a great leader – lead with enthusiasm and optimism.

Mark E. Brouker, Captain, United States Navy (retired), Pharm.D., MBA, FACHE, BCPS, is founder of Brouker Leadership Solutions, and author of Lessons From The Navy: How To Earn Trust, Lead Teams, And Achieve Organizational Excellence. For more information visit http://www.broukerleadershipsolutions.com/.

[1] Gallup, “State of the American Workplace, 2017.” Accessed February 12,2020.

[2] Michael Bush, A Great Place to Work for All (Oakland, CA: Berrett-Koehler, 2018), 26

[3] Marcus Buckingham, First, Break All the Rules (New York, NY: Simon and Schuster, 1999), 40

 

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JPMorgan to launch UK consumer bank within months

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JPMorgan to launch UK consumer bank within months 2

LONDON (Reuters) – JPMorgan Chase & Co will launch a digital consumer bank in Britain under its Chase brand within months, the U.S. banking giant said on Wednesday.

The bank said the new business had already recruited 400 people and would offer a range of products, including current accounts.

The UK venture will be led by Sanoke Viswanathan, who has been named chief executive. Viswanathan was previously chief administrative officer for JPMorgan’s corporate and investment bank.

The digital bank will be headquartered in London’s Canary Wharf financial district, with customers supported from a new call centre in Edinburgh.

Reports about a likely tilt by JPMorgan at the UK consumer market have been circulating for around a year, but the bank had publicly disclosed few details.

“The UK has a vibrant and highly competitive consumer banking marketplace, which is why we’ve designed the bank from scratch to specifically meet the needs of customers here,” said Gordon Smith, CEO of consumer and community banking for JPMorgan.

(Reporting by Iain Withers; Editing by Jan Harvey)

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European regulator clears Boeing 737 MAX airliner for return to service

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European regulator clears Boeing 737 MAX airliner for return to service 3

(Reuters) – Boeing Co’s modified 737 MAX airliner is safe to return to service in Europe, the European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) said on Wednesday, lifting a 22-month flight ban after two crashes of the jet which caused 346 deaths.

EASA Executive Director Patrick Ky said it had “every confidence” that the plane was safe following an independent European review of changes ranging from cockpit software to maintenance checks and pilot training.

“Let me be quite clear that this journey does not end here,” Ky said in a statement.

“We have every confidence that the aircraft is safe, which is the precondition for giving our approval. But we will continue to monitor 737 MAX operations closely as the aircraft resumes service.”

Regulators around the world grounded the MAX in March 2019, after the crash of an Ethiopian Airlines jet five months after one flown by Indonesia’s Lion Air plunged into the Java Sea. A total of 346 passengers and crew members were killed in the two crashes.

The United States lifted its ban in November, followed by Brazil and Canada. China, which was first to ban the plane after the second crash, and which represents a quarter of MAX sales, has not said when it will act.

Relatives of some crash victims have strongly criticised the move the clear Boeing’s best-selling airplane.

EASA represents 31 mainly EU nations, excluding Britain which formally left the bloc this month. Britain is expected to issue its own separate approval on Wednesday.

(Reporting by Sudip Kar-Gupta, Rachit Vats; editing by Jason Neely)

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