The price of each bottle online is as low as 2.5 yuan. Zhong Xuegao’s stock is frozen and his official account is “stopped” for “price reduction promotion”?

  Recently, the former "Internet celebrity ice cream" Zhong Xuegao has once again attracted attention.

  Tianyancha APP shows that recently, 35 million shares held by Zhong Xuegao Food (Shanghai) Co., Ltd. (hereinafter referred to as Zhong Xuegao) have been frozen, involving three of its companies.

  In recent years, negative public opinions about Zhong Xuegao have continued: In October last year, he was on the hot search list due to salary arrears, and now it has triggered a heated discussion about "freezing shares."

  On February 21, reporters from West China Metropolis Daily and Cover News discovered that Zhong Xuegao’s official WeChat public account, Weibo, and Xiaohongshu had all stopped updating for several months or even half a year. In addition, on third-party shopping platforms, Zhong Xuegao’s products are sold at very low prices, among which products on expiration date are as low as 2.5 yuan a piece.

Negative rumors continue and 35 million yuan of equity held has been frozen

  The reporter learned from the Tianyancha APP that recently, Zhong Xuegao has added three pieces of equity freezing information, with the frozen equity amounts being 20 million yuan, 10 million yuan, and 5 million yuan respectively.

  The companies subject to the equity freeze are Shuqu Food (Shanghai) Co., Ltd., Panqi Youxi (Shanghai) Biotechnology Co., Ltd., and Zhongjia (Shanghai) Trading Co., Ltd., and the freezing period is from February 6 to February 5, 2027. On that day, the enforcement court was the People's Court of Xiuzhou District, Jiaxing City, Zhejiang Province.

  In fact, this is not the first time Zhong Xuegao has been frozen by his equity. Tianyancha APP shows that at the end of last year, Zhong Xuegaozeng successively added 4 pieces of equity freezing information, with the frozen equity amounts being 1 million yuan, 1.3957 million yuan, 1.3957 million yuan, and 1 million yuan respectively.

  In addition to the equity freeze, Zhong Xuegao has been in trouble several times in recent years due to price disputes, wage arrears, shortages and other reasons.

  In October 2023, the wage arrears incident once pushed Zhong Xuegao to the forefront of public opinion. At that time, on social platforms, many netizens who claimed to have worked for Zhong Xuegao broke the news that they were owed wages by Zhong Xuegao, and current employees also faced delays in salary payments.

  Yesterday, reporters discovered that Zhong Xuegao’s official WeChat public account and Weibo updates were all stuck in August 2023, and his latest note in Xiaohongshu was also stuck in September 2023.

Can’t sell ice cream? The online price is as low as 2.5 yuan a piece

  Speaking of Zhong Xuegao, he was first criticized by netizens as the "Ice Cream Assassin" because of his high selling price. Later, his ice cream "burned like fire" sparked heated discussions across the Internet, and he was once involved in various negative public opinions and doubts.

  In March 2018, Zhong Xuegao was born. The name is homophonic to "Chinese ice cream". The founder Lin Sheng's goal is to "make the best ice cream in China." On the "Double Eleven" in 2018, 20,000 pieces of Ecuadorian Pink Diamond ice cream with a unit price of 66 yuan were sold out within 15 hours, making Zhong Xuegao "out of the circle" on the entire network.

  However, Zhong Xuegao, who was racing at extremely fast speed, failed to achieve long-term success. In recent years, Zhong Xuegao's decline has been highlighted. On the 2023 "Double Eleven", Zhong Xuegao, who was originally a "frequent" on the list and the top live broadcast room, disappeared. It seems to be losing its main battlefield by relying on online channels to rise.

  In the summer of 2023, reporters saw Zhong Xuegaoduo selling ice cream at discounts in many ice cream wholesale stores and convenience stores in Chengdu. Some store owners said that Zhong Xuegao's sales were not good. Many consumers who came to the store would ask about the price, but not much was purchased.

  iiMedia data shows that in the 2023 survey of acceptable prices for Chinese consumers to buy a single ice cream or ice cream, the price range of 3-15 yuan accounted for the highest proportion, and basically no one cared about prices above 15 yuan after early adopters.

  On February 21, a reporter searched for "Zhong Xuegao" on a third-party shopping platform and found that its products were all on discount. The price of an ice cream was between 3.9 and 10.4 yuan, with the average price being around 5 yuan. In addition, the reporter also saw that in some stores, a 20-pack of Zhong Xuegao Strawberry White Qiao sold for only 60 yuan, with an average of 3 yuan per bottle; a 20-pack of pink lemon lemon ice sold for only 50 yuan, with an average of 2.5 yuan per bottle.

  It is worth mentioning that under the label of "Ice Cream Assassin", Zhong Xuegao also pursued a low-price strategy. In April last year, Zhong Xuegao launched a new low-price ice cream product "Sasaa", priced at 3.5 yuan, but the response was mediocre.

Zhong Xuegao needs to tell a “new story” to compete in the 100 billion market

  Data from the Qianzhan Industry Research Institute shows that from 2015 to 2021, the market size of China's ice cream and ice cream industry increased from less than 90 billion yuan to 160 billion yuan, with a cumulative increase of more than 90% in six years. It is expected to exceed the 200 billion yuan mark in 2027.

  Although the ice cream market continues to expand, competition in the industry is fierce. In recent years, with the changes in consumer habits, high-priced ice cream has begun to fail to sell, and "cost-effectiveness" and "health" have become labels that consumers value more. Zhong Xuegao, who was once surrounded by negative public opinion, found it even more difficult for consumers to buy into him.

  "Zhong Xuegao has always taken a high-end route in the market. When talking about Zhong Xuegao, most people's first reaction is: This is a very expensive ice cream." Jiang Han, a senior researcher at Pangu Think Tank, said that most people think of Zhong Xuegao. Xue Gao has a repulsive mentality. The core reason is that its pricing is too high.

  Pan Jun, a global senior consultant at Bain & Company, said that ice cream is Zhong Xuegao’s main business, and its taste and quality have always been the most important selling points. Since the ice cream "burning" crisis broke out, Zhong Xuegao has fallen into an irreconcilable conflict with consumers. Since then, he has been at the forefront due to various internal crises.

  Zhu Danpeng, a commentator on the Chinese food industry, believes that Zhong Xuegao's affordable products are no longer comparable to big brands such as Yili, Mengniu, Nestlé, and Menglong, and high-end products can no longer be sold. In the final analysis, its business philosophy is not sustainable. It pays more attention to the present and uses a little traffic to "harvest" consumers. (West China Metropolis Daily)