(Yicai Global) March 19 -- Chinese internet mammoth Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. will infuse another USD2 billion into Southeast Asia's largest e-commerce platform Lazada to hasten development of its local e-commerce business, the former announced today, as online outlet Lieyun reported.
Alibaba has already invested USD40 billion in the Singapore-based Lazada Group SA. Alibaba took control of it for USD1 billion in 2016 and increased its shareholding ratio to 83 percent by inputting another USD1 billion last year. The USD2 billion pay-in now contemplated is non-equity investment, so it will leave Alibaba's shareholding ratio unchanged.
Peng Lei, one of Alibaba Group's 18 founders, will serve as Lazada's new chief executive, while Maximilian Bittner, the company's former CEO, will stay on as a senior advisor.
The investment shows Alibaba's confidence in Lazada's future performance and its growth expectations in the local market, the former stressed. "The Southeast Asian marketis an important part of Alibaba's global growth strategy," it said.
Founded in 2012, Lazada started from the business-to-consumer (B2C) model in the early days, developing into an Amazon-like integrated B2C platform (including both B2B2C and B2C) and it has a self-built logistics system, which is like the Amazon Prime LiveUp subscription service with which it competes.
Lazada mainly serves consumers in Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam. It was already one of the largest online shopping websites in Southeast Asia when Alibaba became its shareholder in 2016.