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China's Rising Imports Of American Goods
By: Frank Holmes   Friday, November 11, 2011 7:26 PM
Symbols: KO

While CLSA doesn't anticipate the Chinese to consume much more than 3 kilograms of coffee, the research firm indicates that the Chindonesian markets together "still have at least two decades left of positive volume growth."

On-trade consumption, which is coffee purchased at chains and fast-food outlets, also remains very low, says CLSA, but this hasn't stopped Starbucks from forging new frontiers. This fall, the Seattle-based company opened its 500th store on the mainland—the company reports a total of 800 stores in Greater China. The strategy appears to be successful so far: The Financial Times indicated that sales in China grew between 30 and 40 percent during the third quarter.

By 2015, Starbucks plans to open 1,500 stores, although this number is low on a per person basis when you consider that in the U.S., there are more than 10,000 stores serving lattes and cappuccinos today.

The carbonated beverage market is growing as well. In this area of the beverage market, Coca-Cola and PepsiCo together have more than 90 percent market share in China, says CLSA. Over the past 10 years, the firm's data shows the volume of carbonated drinks in China has increased an average of 8 percent per year, but the growth has been slowing in recent years due to rising health awareness and a maturing market.

However, Coca-Cola had continued growth over this last quarter: the company reported that worldwide volumes grew by 5 percent, primarily driven by operations in India and China.

This growth may be partially due to the company's rising market share in the fruit and vegetable juice category. In a very fragmented market, over the past 10 years, CLSA shows that Coca-Cola has grown from virtually no market share in China's fruit and vegetable juice category, to a 10 percent market share.

In China, fruit and vegetable juices by volume from 2005 through 2010 have experienced strong growth: CLSA says that the market for juices has grown 15 percent per year, driven by a rising health trend. Going forward, volume of fruit and vegetable juices should growth 10 percent per year over the next five years, and 8 percent a year during the 2016 through 2020 timeframe, says CLSA.

In China Fears – A Road Warrior's View, I discussed how American companies are riding the wave of China's growth all the way to the bank. From what they drink and eat to where they shop and what they buy, as increasing incomes provide more discretionary income, the dynamics of the Chinese consumer forever change. I believe savvy investors can benefit from these emerging trends.

The following securities mentioned were held by one or more of U.S. Global Investors Fund as of 9/30/11: Starbucks, The Coca-Cola Co.

By clicking the link above, you will be directed to a third-party website. U.S. Global Investors does not endorse all information supplied by this website and is not responsible for its content.


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