Chinese Banks Already Sold 95% of Commemorative Olympics Coins
Customers in Beijing have been fighting to get their hands on merchandise featuring the games' mascot, an adorable panda named Bing Dwen Dwen. Shoppers have been clearing shelves of plush toys and other products with the panda's face on it.
But another product is getting the attention of shoppers around the Olympic Village—commemorative coins. According to the Global Times, a second batch of coins was announced and immediately sold out at Chinese banks.
The organizers first released 10 sets of commemorative coins in November, with a second round of bookings, where shoppers could reserve 20 sets at a time, followed shortly after.
Even with those reservation spots, plenty of shoppers missed out, according to representatives from the People's Bank of China.
"I feel the public's fever for the Beijing 2022 commemorative coins and banknotes became remarkably strong after the start of the Winter Olympics," one PBC staffer told the Global Times. "People's love for Bing Dwen Dwen also improved the development of commemorative coins at banks."
The sale of Bing Dwen Dwen merchandise is interesting, in that merchandise was readily available for months before the games, but it wasn't until after the Opening Ceremonies that people suddenly went all-out buying merchandise.
The set of coins includes two pieces, each worth 5 yuan, and feature events like speed skating and skiing. Banknotes worth 20 yuan feature different ice sports and snow sports.
— 中国驻立陶宛代办处 (@in_embassy) November 20, 2021
The PBC reported that approximately 189.83 million coin sets were reserved in November, which already made up 94.94% of the PBC's total quota. That first round of coin exchanges ended just three days later.
The coins also performed better among consumers than the banknotes. Banknote reservations during that same period still performed well, totaling 68.84% of total quota, but much less than the coins.
An event like the Olympics captures international attention like few other things. But this shows that a well-done promotional event can capture local consumers, too. People want to celebrate their hometown, and having the Olympics is a point of local pride. The PBC might have even underestimated just how much local pride shoppers had.