AS Watson Group Appoints Co-Managing Directors of Watsons China

Thursday March 14th, 2024

AS Watson Group today announced the appointment of Fred Chan and Vivian Nie as Co-Managing Directors of Watsons China, succeeding Kulvinder Birring, current CEO of Watsons China, who will be appointed as CEO of Marionnaud Group, a subsidiary of CK Hutchison Holdings.

“I would like to warmly thank Kulvinder for his great contributions to Watsons China in the past eight years. Under his leadership, he has successfully repositioned the Watsons brand as the top retailer in our category nationwide. He has led the organisation through a remarkable cultural transformation, fostering a scientific, collaborative, agile, and growth-oriented mindset. Despite operating in a highly competitive retail market, his team has demonstrated resilience and a relentless drive for innovation, continuously enhancing the customer experience. I look forward to him bringing his experience to lead the growth strategy in our luxury perfumeries and cosmetics retail brand Marionnaud in Europe,” said Dominic Lai, Group Managing Director of AS Watson Group and Executive Director of
CK Hutchison

Lai continued, “I am delighted to have Fred Chan and Vivian Nie taking over the leadership of Watsons China as Co-Managing Directors. Both Fred and Vivian have been with the business for many years and instrumental in the successful transformation of the O+O (Offline plus Online) retail model in the business. I am confident that they will continue to evolve our growth strategy to navigate the rapidly changing market in Mainland China, and stay focused on serving our customers with differentiated shopping experience, quality products, and excellent services.”

Fred Chan joined Watsons China in 2011 as Operations Director of South China. At the time, Watsons China had just over 1,000 stores and today the business has grown to 3,800 O+O stores. Over the years, Fred's role has expanded geographically, and was promoted to his current role as General Manager of Sales Operations in 2023. He has been instrumental in building operational excellence in sales operations, is passionate in developing talents on the field, and has been one of the key driving forces in the O+O transformation in the business.

Vivian Nie joined Watsons China in 2018 as the Marketing Director, and was subsequently promoted to General Manager, Customer Growth in 2021. In 2023, she took on additional responsibility for the trading function. Vivian has brought fresh perspectives and innovative thinking, enabling us to adapt to the ever-changing market landscape. She has demonstrated her versatility and ability to effectively manage multiple areas of the business, and she has been instrumental in the development of award-winning MyStore O+O business model on the Wechat Enterprise Platform interacting with 43 million customers, and the recent launch of OptimO, Watsons’ retail media business.

The appointments are effective from April 2024.