Alibaba invests USD 1.3 billion to expand its offline retail business

Alibaba Group, a China based eCommerce firm, has apparently planned to pour in more than a billion U.S. dollars into its offline retail segment. According to The TechCrunch, the retail behemoth currently owns more than 15% of share in Beijing Easyhome Furnishing with an investment of nearly USD 867 million.

The company also seems to have invested nearly USD 486 million in Shiji Retail Information Technology, a domestic retail firm focusing majorly on hotels & retail activities, in yet another deal. An article by The South China Morning Post categorically affirms that Alibaba will purchase 38% of the shares of Shiji through Alibaba Investment Limited, a subsidiary of the eCommerce giant, as a part of its strategy to expand its offline retail business in China.

Alibaba’s deal with Beijing Easyhome Furnishing is reportedly the fourth major investment deal it has signed on across the brick & mortar retail chain. So far, the firm has been enhancing its presence across the retail sector by investing over USD 10 billion in brick-and-mortar outlets to acquire a competitive edge against regional business rivals such as Tencent Holdings. In 2017, Alibaba had had even purchased a major stake in the Sun Art Retail Group Limited, a hypermarket firm in China, and the InTime Department Store.

For the record, the firm had also set up its own retail chain – the Hema supermarket chain, touted as an early adopter of cashier less checkouts. Alibaba’s other ventures include the food delivery platform Zomato, for which the retail giant invested nearly USD 200 million through its Ant Financial unit.

Recently, the Chinese based firm had purchased nearly 30% of stake in Big Basket (amounting to around USD 300 million), the first comprehensive online grocery store based in India. Apparently, the move was touted as Alibaba’s strategy to challenge Amazon’s presence across the Indian sub-continent.

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Dhananjay Punekar

Dhananjay develops content for Market Size Forecasters. A post graduate in mathematics as well as business administration, he worked as a process executive in Infosys BPO Limited before switching his professional genre. Following his childhood passion, he opted for a career in writing and now pens d...

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