Lazada to lean on new owner Alibaba

Lazada to lean on new owner Alibaba

Lazada, Southeast Asia's largest e-commerce website, will use Alibaba Group's strength to provide big data and analytic services and help online vendors boost sales after the Chinese e-commerce giant acquired the company.

The move will pave the way for allowing Chinese retailers and manufacturers to sell their products through Lazada's site. In turn, this will open opportunities to local online retailers to access Alibaba's online marketplace.

Alessandro Piscini, chief executive of Lazada Thailand, said the company will use Alibaba's big data platform for online merchants to avail themselves of relevant data products and consumer purchasing behaviour to create immense value to users.

He insisted that Lazada will continue its business operations as usual and has no plans to rebrand.

Mr Piscini said the closure of Ensogo's business operations in Thailand and five other Asean countries would have no impact on consumer confidence in Lazada's activities.

Lazada has a different business model from Ensogo, he said, as it doesn't apply a discount coupon strategy. In addition, Lazada has strong financial support from Alibaba.

Mr Piscini acknowledged that policymakers and consumer protection authorities must closely monitor e-commerce companies to make sure they deliver on what they promise to consumers.

He said Thailand's online retail market will continue to grow thanks to the rapid adoption of 4G smartphones and increasing numbers of mobile internet users.

The average Thai person spends 7.4 hours per day on different media platforms, with mobile phones accounting for 3.1 hours of that total. This demonstrates that online channels are increasingly playing a more important role among Thai users, said Mr Piscini.

In addition, 69% of Thai smartphone users do research online before making a purchasing decision. "This is why companies need to allocate more money for digital media," he added.

Lazada, in collaboration with 300 leading brands in Thailand, yesterday launched its Super Brands Deal campaign, offering discounts of up to 80% on products and services available on the website.

The campaign runs from July 5-11.

Mr Piscini cited a report conducted by Neilsen suggesting that by 2019, of every US$10 dollar (350.5 baht) retail purchase made globally, at least one dollar would go online.

Global online retail sales will more than double between 2015 and 2019, accounting for over 12% of global sales by 2019.

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