The Chinese platform known for fake products now has a clone
Pinduoduo has run into an unlikely competitor, which is cloning its ecommerce strategy
When Chinese social ecommerce platform Pinduoduo exploded in popularity this year it wasn’t just because it encourages sharing group buys on social media. It’s also because it offers a bunch of cheap stuff – among which are clones of well-known brands as well as outright forgeries.
But now the seller of clones itself is being cloned. It has almost the same name, logo, and business model. It also plans to sell almost the exact same types of products. It’s Pinshaoshao.
However, this reputation is hard to lose, especially since you can still buy goods on Pinduoduo that might not be outright fakes... but they’re very close. This includes Supremeis sports shoes, Schwarbstrong hairspray (inspired by German brand Schwartzkopf), and more versions of Pampers than you would dare to imagine.
The reason behind blatant rip-offs is that China’s intellectual property legal regulations are lacking. Although times are changing, there are still few legal means to protecting intellectual property in cases where one brand simply copies the designs of another brand.
After the media rushed to call Pinshaoshao a clone, the company, owned by Shenzhen Hongxin Retail Enterprise Management Co., published an explanation on Thursday of why they chose this particular approach to present itself.
Pinshaoshao said that they did “carelessly” try to jump on Pinduoduo’s fame, but that there are no ill intentions behind it. They also noted that they chose their name as a playful reminder of their famous rival’s weaknesses.
Pinduoduo’s name literally means Together More More, embodying their strategy of recruiting shoppers on social media for group and bulk purchases of cheap and often low-quality goods. Knock-off Pampers are some of those.
On the other hand, Pinshaoshao’s name means Together Less Less. The company said it believes that having a huge amount of goods available for sale inevitably leads to problems in product quality. That’s why their strategy is to sell cheap but good products… which also means less.
In their press release, Pinshashao wrote: “We believe: less is more, slower is faster! Step by step, we’ll do a solid job! Success comes sooner or later.”