Asia’s largest Apple Store lands in Shanghai

On 21 March, China’s largest Apple Store, the second largest in the world opened its doors in Jing’an, Shanghai. It also marks the 8th Apple Store in the megacity. Apple CEO Tim Cook flew to Shanghai to attend the opening. With an all-female quartet from the Shanghai Symphony Orchestra, the event showcased Apple Music’s classical music app. The store will stock all the latest Apple releases including the M3 chip-equipped MacBook Air, according to Deirdre O’Brien, Apple’s senior vice president of Retail and People.

The new Jing’an store is Apple’s attempt at hyper-localisation in Shanghai. The hoarding board before launch was printed with images of Shanghai’s official city flower the yulan magnolia, which hinted at the opening date coinciding with the blossoming season of the flower. Gifts given away at the event also had yulan motifs and the store itself is designed to blend in with the traditional temple and park in Jing’an. The Today at Apple lessons at the new shop will focus on inspiring creators and tech practitioners in Shanghai, showcasing the forefront of culture and innovation of the city to the local community and visitors.

Other than Cook’s charm offensive including “running into” actor Zheng Kai on The Bund, the Chinese media also put a spotlight on the meeting between Cook and BYD Company president and CEO Wang Chuanfu. Wang met Cook with senior executives from fellow Apple suppliers Lens Technology and Shenzhen Everwin Precision Technology. But as the highest-profile of the three and BYD’s car-making speciality, his meeting with Cook sparked speculation on wider cooperation between the two companies.

Cook attended supply chain-related events both this visit as well as his last visit to China in October. Cook shared in an interview that for 30 years, Apple has been expanding its supply chain in China and there is no other place more important in terms of supply chain. China is the third-largest market, according to data. With sluggish sales of the new iPhone, the pressure on Apple is still growing, however, with Cook’s frequent visits and hyper-localisation in the country, this is a positive step in the right direction to helping Apple flourish in the market.


Join our newsletter