Photo: Reuters/Kim Hong-Ji

CEO of Starbucks China, Belinda Wong hailed last week the success seen in the company’s China business after teaming up with social media and payment platform WeChat, reports Inside Retail Asia.

“Partner and customer enthusiasm for the Starbucks brand and the momentum in Starbucks China business have never been greater,” Wong said. “We saw growth in all categories and dayparts. Beverage, food and digital innovation are laser-focused on operational excellence, and targeted brand investments are attracting new customers into our stores and bringing existing customers in more often.”

Sales for China grew 7% in the first quarter of the year, following a strategic partnership with WeChat parent company Tencent, which was launched last December.

“Following on that success, in February this year, we launched social gifting to unprecedented customer demand, partner excitement and social media interest. In only the first seven weeks after launch, over 1.2 million gifts were sent and over half have been redeemed by recipients in our stores.”

China is the company’s second biggest and fastest growing international market.

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