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Google to invest $550 million in Alibaba rival JD.com

18 June 2018

A logo of JD.com is seen on a helmet of a delivery man in Beijing, China June 16, 2014.

Google will invest more than half a billion dollars in China's second-largest e-commerce company JD.com as part of a move to expand retail services around the world, the companies said Monday. This includes USA and European markets, with products from the Chinese retailer appearing in relevant Google Search results.

In recent months, Google has been making inroads back into the Chinese market through various deals and investments.

Google declined to comment on the rumored Flipkart deal.

In China, JD.com competes aggressively with e-commerce leader Alibaba, which runs the popular Taobao and Tmall shopping platforms.

The goal here is to merge JD.com's experience and technology in supply chain and logistics - in China, it has opened warehouses that use robots rather than workers - with Google's customer reach, data and marketing to produce new kinds of online retail. This will give them less than a 1 percent stake in JD, a spokesman for JD said. In a joint release, the companies said they would "collaborate on a range of strategic initiatives, including joint development of retail solutions" in Europe, the US and Southeast Asia.

We want to accelerate how retail ecosystems deliver consumer experiences that are helpful, personalized and offer high quality service in a range of countries around the world, including in Southeast Asia.

The shares are equivalent to a almost one percent stake in the company, according to a JD.com spokesman.

Google to invest $550 million in Alibaba rival JD.com