As more people choose to shop from the comfort of their computers – or mobile phones – the battle lines between online retailers are being continuously redrawn as the big players look to build their presence and new entrants join the fray.
E-tail giant Alibaba has already begun to make significant inroads. It increased its stake in Southeast Asia’s homegrown e-commerce site Lazada from 51 percent to 83 percent. It also setting a regional logistics hub in Malaysia by end 2019 that will function as a centralized customs clearance, warehousing and fulfilment facility for Malaysia and the wider region to deliver faster clearance for imports and exports.
Fellow Chinese rival JD.com is entering via Indonesia and Thailand. It is reportedly in talks with Indonesia’s Tokopedia, one of Indonesia’s largest online marketplaces, and has announced it is expanding into Thailand at the end of the year.
Elsewhere, U.S. behemoth Amazon made its move by launching in Singapore last month and currently occupies a warehouse of nearly 100,000 square feet in the western end of the island state while home-grown start-up, Sea, is focusing on its ecommerce site Shoppee following a fresh round of funding.
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