MUMBAI: Indian e-commerce firms are offering funding help and tech support to woo small retailers, emulating a strategy used by Chinese online retail giant Alibaba Group Holding Ltd to expand into the towns and villages home to the majority of consumers. India’s biggest e-tailers such as Flipkart, Snapdeal and the local arm of Amazon.com Inc are online marketplaces, with commission from sellers accounting for the bulk of their revenue.
American retailer Wal-Mart has signed a deal with online payments provider Alipay to help consumers pay for goods in China. Wal-Mart will begin the cooperation within 25 of its outlets in Shenzhen. Based on the market response in this southern Chinese city, Wal-Mart plans to gradually expand the coverage of this new service throughout mainland China. Alipay is a related service of Alibaba, the Chinese e-commerce juggernaut. Financial terms of the deal were not released.
JD.com , China’s second largest e-commerce site, has agreed to invest HK$1.3 billion ($171million) for a 10% stake in Kingdee International Software Group, as the e-commerce powerhouse forays into software businesses. JD.com purchased shares of Hong Kong-listed Kingdee at HK$ 4.60 each, an almost 10% discount to Kingdee’s closing price of HK$5.11 on Friday.
Face++, a face recognition tech startup from Beijing, today announced it raised an additional US$25 million as part of its series B round that began in November last year (h/t to 36kr). The fresh funding brings the company’s series B to a total of US$47 million. Innovation Works and Ignition Partners contributed to the initial funding, while the more recent investors have not yet been disclosed.
NEW YORK: A group of luxury goods makers sued Alibaba Group Holding Ltd, contending the Chinese online shopping giant had knowingly made it possible for counterfeiters to sell their products throughout the world. The lawsuit was filed in Manhattan federal court by Gucci, Yves Saint Laurent and other brands owned by Paris-based Kering SA seeking damages and an injunction for alleged violations of trademark and racketeering laws.
The development of e-commerce on Tencent’s WeChat platform has led to questions about the fate of the social media app used by 500 million people, according to Guangzhou’s Time Weekly. Tencent began allowing commercial activities through WeChat’s “Moments” feature, which offers updates of a user’s online friends, beginning last year. The decision has led to thriving business activities that are plagued by counterfeits, fake products and fraud schemes, with one industry insider calling the development similar to that of Taobao, China’s most popular shopping site owned by e-commerce giant Alibaba.
SK Telecom said Friday that it will spend more in beefing up its online platform businesses for corporate clients, singling out trade brokering as one of its next cash cows. “We aim to create a new ecosystem in the online trading arena by promoting our platforms,” it said. The SK Group’s telecommunications affiliate has launched an online business-to-business (B2B) trading platform.
The State Council, China’s cabinet, on Thursday released a guideline on e-commerce development, to foster new growth drivers amid the economic slowdown. The government pledged to create a favorable environment for e-commerce by cutting red tape, easing market access and lowering taxation. Efforts will be made to strengthen resource sharing, online security, financing, infrastructure and credit system services, according to the guideline.
Rural e-commerce development will be a top focus this year, as China aims to foster a new growth pillar in the countryside, the country’s Ministry of Agriculture said on Friday. E-commerce not only provides rural residents much easier access to products, but has also become an important channel for the sale of produce, the ministry said in a statement on its website. Booming e-commerce is conducive to higher rural consumption and also attracts entrepreneurial talent to rural areas, according to the ministry.
The Taiwan unit of Yahoo on Thursday unveiled a new feature that allows buyers to search for and purchase a product, using a photo of it. The new feature called Image Search will be added to Yahoo’s Super Mall app by the end of the year and will include products ranging from bottled drinks to clothing and health foods, said Jacky Wang, vice president of the e-commerce group at Yahoo Taiwan and Hong Kong. Super Mall users will also be able to review movies and book tickets using a photo of the movie poster, Wang said, demonstrating the feature at Yahoo’s e-commerce forum in Taipei.
E-commerce giant Alibaba Group hasn’t given up on its mobile OS, and is taking the software to China’s rural markets through a series of low-cost phones. The company has partnered with mobile carrier China Telecom to sell the YunOS handsets. The eight phones will be built by lesser-known Chinese brands, and will range from 299 yuan (US$49) to 699 yuan. Although Alibaba has its own Android apps that connect to its popular e-commerce stores, the Linux-based YunOS comes with a whole suite of company-developed services.
BENGALURU: Infosys has acquired US-based digital experience solutions company Kallidus for $120 million that includes a deferred component and retention bonus. Kallidus offers including mobile commerce and in-store shopping experiences to large retail clients. It develops and host mobile websites, apps, and other digital shopping experiences across mobile, tablet, desktop, in-store and all emerging channels. The latest acquisition is Bengaluru-based IT company’s second acquisition this year.
More than 4000 retailers in Australia could be vulnerable to a bug in the eBay-owned Magento platform which allows full takeover of ecommerce sites by attackers. The ‘Shoplift’ flaw can also be exploited for unauthorised access to customer details and credit card information from site databases, security vendor Check Point noted. Owner of Dutch Magento hoster Byte.nl, Willem de Groot, tested sites around the world to check if they had applied the SUPEE-5344 security update for Magento.
Consumer complaints during the first quarter of 2015 for Internet shopping increased by 174.4% year-on-year to 24,100 cases, according to statistics published by State Administration for Industry and Commerce of China. The State Administration revealed that China’s nationwide industry and commerce administrative units received a total of 1.701 million consumer complaints, reports and inquiries in the first quarter of 2015, representing a year-on-year increase of 18.7%.
BENGALURU: Amazon India is inviting small and medium businesses to procure supplies from a new website beginning this week, the first country outside the US where the e-commerce major is offering the service. The pilot service will be tested in Bengaluru before being offered in other cities, marking the entry of the Seattle-based company into wholesale e-commerce, an online business segment where foreign direct investment is permitted in India.
Tokyo-based ecommerce startup Origami today announced a JPY 1.6 billion (US$13.3 million) series B funding round led by SoftBank Group, Credit Saison, and angel investor Makoto Takano. In addition to the new investment, Origami has also partnered with SoftBank Group and Credit Saison to boost its online-to-offline (O2O) focused mobile shopping experience.
BENGALURU: E-commerce has emerged as India’s new sun-rise industry and is set to cross business worth $16 billion by the end of 2015, a joint study by ASSOCHAM-Deloitte said. The ‘Future of e-commerce: Uncovering Innovation’ study reveals that the digital commerce market in India has grown steadily from $4.4 billion in 2010 to $13.6 billion in 2014 and likely to touch $16 billion by the end of 2015 on the back of growing internet population and increased online shoppers.
HYDERABAD: Announcing the largest investment in India so far, online retail giant Amazon on Wednesday said it would open a Fulfilment Centre (FC), its largest warehouse in the country, near Hyderabad. Coming up near Kottur, on the outskirts of Hyderabad, the FC will be spread over 280,000 square feet and will be operational from May this year.This is the largest investment in infrastructure in any state in India by Amazon. However, the quantum of investment has not been revealed.
When Xiaomi first launched in India last July, the Chinese gadget maker did so with online-only sales through one ecommerce store – Flipkart. That ends today as Xiaomi’s India boss, Manu Kumar Jain, announced a wide array of new ways for Indian consumers to buy its smartphones or tablets. Xiaomi has tapped Airtel India’s stores for sales before with the Redmi Note 4G, but the sales channels through Amazon India, Snapdeal, and The Mobile Stores are brand-new. The Mobile Stores has 300 outlets across the country.
The Indonesian ecommerce joint venture between postal service SingPost and mobile device retailer Trikomsel will go live some time in May, according to Trikomsel president and CEO Sugiono Wiyono. Previously a somewhat mysterious project, we now know the ecommerce firm will start with selling smartphones, clothing, and sports gear. Following a move by Lippo Group’s MatahariMall to offer online-to-offline service in which customers can order online, then pay and pick up goods at a physical store, Trikomsel will leverage its own nationwide network of nearly 1,000 brick-and-mortar shops in the same way.