JD.com plans aggressive international expansion

Chinese online giant JD.com has announced major international expansion plans, that alongside rivals Alibaba, could end up taking market share from Amazon in a number of major territories.

Though it has been investing less in expansion overseas than rivals Alibaba, JD.com will “increase investment in countries that conform to JD’s strategies, no matter if it is on warehousing, logistics or supply chain,” Xin Lijun, the newly-appointed chief executive of JD’s retail business said.

In preparation, Xin said the firm is working on “further strategic analysis in Vietnam and Europe” as potential locations to expand in.

JD.com has been focused on investments and joint ventures as it expands its interests thus far. For example, it formed a joint venture with Thai retailer Central Group in launching an e-commerce platform in Thailand in 2018, and in 2019 the online giant became the largest e-commerce marketplace in Vietnam, Tiki. It also operates AliExpress rival joybuy.com for international sales.

JD Logistics, the logistics arm of JD, has been leading the international expansion efforts.

“This is the biggest difference in terms of global expansion compared with other companies. What we provide is integrated and closed-loop services. This is what enables us to perform generally well in overseas markets,” Xin said.

“I believe as the pandemic situation eases and as more companies are developing medicines against Covid-19, the improving international environment for business expansion will better serve JD’s global business,” he added.

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