Amazon has finally buckled under the pressure of the massive Chinese e-commerce market, launching a store on rival Alibaba’s Tmall trading platform.
Alibaba is not like Amazon in that it does not store or sell any products, it simply acts as a trading platform for third-party stores and gains a share of every sale.
Tmall holds over 50 per cent of business-to-consumer transactions in China alone, meaning Amazon needs to be on the service in order to sell more products.
Amazon’s Tmall store will sell food, women’s footwear, kitchenware and other miscellaneous items. It will continue to update the platform, adding more products.
There was no real announcement that Amazon is going on Tmall, but Alibaba noticed and even made a statement on the situation:
"We welcome Amazon to the Alibaba ecosystem and their presence will further broaden the selection of products and elevate the shopping experience for Chinese consumers on Tmall.”
Even though Amazon and Alibaba are seen as rivals, JD.com is the most similar e-commerce service in China to Amazon. By joining Tmall, Amazon should gain more recognition in China and might be able to compete more heavily with JD.com.
The e-commerce market in China is seen as much more valuable than the US and Europe, due to the huge population in China and the percentage of online sales to brick-and-mortar sales.
Alibaba is not looking towards a launch in the West however, meaning we most likely will not see Alibaba setting up shop on Amazon.com any time soon.