New logo symbolises international growth of Chinese dairy giant Yili.

Chinese dairy giant Yili has released a new logo as part of a brand upgrade to illustrate what it calls its "global web internationalisation strategy".

Yili has been in New Zealand since 2013, when it created Oceania Dairy Ltd (ODL), the South Canterbury-based dairy company, building a $236 million milk processing plant on a 38-hectare block of land at Glenavy which began processing milk in the 2014 season.

ODL has since received billions of yuan of investment from Yili Group, the Chinese dairy company whose New Zealand arm is thought to be the world's largest integrated dairy production base — covering packaging, processing, production and R&D.

Yili is China's largest dairy producer with an estimated 22 per cent of retail dairy products such as fresh milk, cheese, yoghurt and sour milk. It is the world's 8th largest dairy company – and has added more assets round the world since beginning its "global web" with ODL.

Advertisement

•In 2014, Yili cooperated with Wageningen University in the Netherlands to set up Yili's European research and development centre.
•In 2015, Yili led the implementation of "Sino-US Food Wisdom Valley" in the U.S.
•This year Yili released Joyday ice cream in Indonesia and acquired Thailand's largest ice cream manufacturer Chomthana Group to explore the South-east Asian market.

Yili logo design.
Yili logo design.

Jianqiu Zhang, CEO of Yili, says: "In just five years, Yili successively established factories in Oceania, North America and Europe. From our Asian headquarters, our products can be spread across four continents.

"Our Oceania production base ODL is a landmark project for New Zealand and China, strengthening economic and trade cooperation."

ODL has also become a model example of China-New Zealand cooperation under the "One Belt One Road" strategy because of its philosophy of "exporting management, standards and wisdom." Just last month, at the China international import Expo (attended by Chinese President Xi Jinping) ODL represented Sino-New Zealand joint ventures, demonstrating cutting-edge technologies and high-standard dairy products.

The new logo's blue, green and red colours have different connections – blue symbolising intelligence and globalisation; green symbolises Yili's healthy food diversification strategy while red illustrates quality and energy.

ODL is of great significance to Yili, not only as an important milestone in its internationalisation but in terms of friendly relations between China and New Zealand. The project was unveiled in 2014 by Xi Jinping and John Key, then New Zealand's Prime Minister, and is regarded in China as a landmark project in economic and trade cooperation between the two countries.

It also paved the way for Yili's presence in other countries and its winning of growing regard as a top player globally. In Rabobank's Top 20 global dairy enterprises rankings announced earlier this year, Yili ranked highly and continued to be No.1 in Asia.

Zhang says, Yili has won China's domestic consumer market with a "green and healthy" brand image successfully implemented and is now focusing on internationalisation and expanding overseas markets.

The new logo is an important part of that internationalisation, taking Yili further away from its origins as a small, street dairy factory 60 years ago.

"Now it provides nutritional support to 1.3 billion people every year," says Zhang, "and its success has been part of the renaissance of Chinese brands in the world."