Vinexpo HK: Bordeaux vineyard sales leap amid ‘Jack Ma influence’ among Chinese buyers

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Chinese purchases of Bordeaux chateaux have jumped since the beginning of 2016, with many more showing interest, said professionals at Vinexpo HK.

Image: LI Lijuan of Maxwell-Storrie-Baynes hosting a seminar at The Key Gallery at Vinexpo Hong Kong, credit LI Lijuan
Image: LI Lijuan of Maxwell-Storrie-Baynes hosting a seminar at The Key Gallery at Vinexpo Hong Kong, credit LI Lijuan

A total of nine chateaux have already been sold through Maxwell-Storrie-Baynes since the beginning of 2016, up by around 50%, LI Lijuan, China marketing director of the exclusive affiliate of Christie’s International Real Estate, told DecanterChina.com.

Jack Ma of the Alibaba Group bought Château de Sours in Bordeaux in late February. The news was followed by the e-commerce tycoon announcing that he is hosting the very first ‘wine sales day’ on Alibaba’s online retail platform Tmall.com.

Many believe that these moves have brought profound impact to the Chinese wine market and people’s impression on wine estate investment.

42 people took part in a seminar at The Key Gallery co-hosted by Maxwell-Storrie-Baynes (MSB)Landscope, the HK division of Christie’s Real Estate, and British wine merchant Berry Bros & Rudd (BBR) during Vinexpo Hong Kong, LI told DecanterChina.com.

‘We estimate that 60% of them have some professional backgrounds in wine, 20% are considering investment immigration, the rest are purely interested in the tourism and wine culture of France,’ she said. ‘We believe that 80% of them are seriously considering buying.’

Jack Ma buying a property in Bordeaux was seen as a positive sign to the Chinese investors, who are ‘always happy to follow the footsteps of the top elites and the super rich’, according to Li.

The locals are positive about their new Chinese neighbors so far, said Li. ‘Bordeaux needed financially powerful Chinese investors.’

But the Chinese investors are staying away from Cru Classes, said Li.

‘It (buying Cru Classes) is not impossible for these investors, and if the offers are right, some chateau owners are happy to sell,’ she said.

‘Having said that, Chinese investors are keen to chase returns. For them it takes too long to retrieve the investment on a Cru Classe by simply selling wines.’

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