Retail in Asia


Birkenstock appoints first-ever managing director for Greater China region

Footwear giant Birkenstock has appointed Tiffany Wu as its first-ever managing director, Greater China, effective November 1.

SEE ALSO: German shoemaker Birkenstock files for IPO

In the newly created position, Wu will lead the German firm’s Greater China business area, which includes mainland China, Hong Kong and Taiwan, driving brand equity and sales in the region. She will report to Klaus Baumann, chief sales officer of the Birkenstock Group.

With over 18 years of premium fashion and luxury omni-channel expertise in China, Wu cut her teeth at PR agency Ogilvy, where she worked for three years before co-founding a leather goods designer brand, Heirloom, in 2009, and selling it on ten years later.

In 2019, Wu led the Fung Retailing-Asia Retail Company (ARC), which assisted foreign companies in the Chinese market, before taking on the role of managing the Greater China region for Blue Nile, the world’s largest online diamond sales company, in 2021.

With the new appointment, Birkenstock said it aims to further strengthen its expanding footprint in Greater China, revered as the “most dynamic region in Asia Pacific and the growth region with the largest untapped ‘white space’ potential for the
company, alongside India and Japan,” according to a press release.

The company currently operates an e-commerce business in China, which will be
supplemented by an owned retail network and a wholesale business with select local partners.

“Greater China is the strongest growth driver for us in the APMA region alongside India and Japan. Unlike many other brands, we haven’t faced consumer headwinds in the last months, quite the opposite. And in view of the latest economic outlook, we expect this positive trend to continue or accelerate,” said Oliver Reichert, director of Birkenstock Holding plc and chief executive officer of the Birkenstock Group

“This is supported by the business in our own digital channels which has developed extremely positively in China this year. With the additional capacity that we can allocate since the go-live of our new plant in Pasewalk in September 2023, we now have the bandwidth to satisfy Chinese consumers’ appetite for our products. In the past three years we have started to implement our engineered distribution playbook in the region. We are now ready to take the next step in our growth journey. It’s the perfect moment for Tiffany Wu to join the team.”