Japanese online retailer Rakuten said on Monday it bought a stake of less than 10 percent in Chinese online discount provider Fanli, as it continues a push into overseas markets.
Rakuten – one of Japan's biggest online retailers – is trying to use its stronghold in its domestic market to transform itself from a pure e-commerce firm into a one-stop-site for a global audience, along the lines of Amazon.com.
The considerable potential of Vietnam's domestic retail market is being actively promoted by large retailers looking to expand their businesses at a faster pace.
The Ministry of Industry and Trade said the modern retail model in Vietnam accounted for a quarter of the national retail value. Vietnam has 724 supermarkets, 132 shopping centres and hundreds of convenience stores. Most of these supermarkets and shopping centres are concentrated in large cities. Meanwhile, sale agents are mainly located in rural areas.
Bangkok has been ranked eighth among retail target markets in Asia-Pacific, with 19 new entrants opening stores last year, according to a report by property consultancy CB Richard Ellis (CBRE).
James Pitchon, head of research and consulting at CBRE Thailand, said Bangkok was one of the hotspots for retail development in Southeast Asia, with 1 million square metres of new retail space due this year.
Hypermarkets, department stores, shopping centres and convenience stores in Thailand are all aggressively moving further into online services.
Their goal is to spur shopping from young consumers who have high spending power.
This month, Future Park Rangsit, Tesco Lotus, Central Group and Charoen Pokphand (CP) Group simultaneously launched online business strategies to boost their sales and attract the young generation to become their new customers. Moreover, their operation costs may fall and sales increase despite having no more retail space.
China and India are currently the darlings of global e-commerce, boasting the world's fastest-growing markets, but a third Asian market could join their ranks in the coming years.
The six major economies of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) – Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand, the Philippines and Vietnam – are benefiting from strong fundamentals that will soon bring them into focus internationally, industry experts say.
Global luxury brands expanding in China are better off targeting the HENRYs – "high earners, not rich yet" – instead of the ultra-wealthy, as a slowing economy and a government that frowns on official excesses usher in an era of less showy spending.
UK online retailer ASOS's decision to cut prices in Australia to reverse declining sales has paid off, but overseas retailers hoping to maintain their share of the local e-commerce market will have to make tough decisions on pricing as the Australian dollar reaches six-year lows.
For China's 640 million internet users, a live Alaskan crab is now just a mouse-click away.
Alibaba and JD.com, the two biggest ecommerce operators in China, have long been best-known for selling apparel and electronics to the country's army of web-savvy shoppers. But online sales of fresh produce – from Mexican avocados to Scottish mackerel – sourced from around the globe are growing fast thanks to increasingly sophisticated supply chains, changing consumer habits, and worries over the safety of homegrown food.
Marks & Spencer is set to enter key cities in China such as Beijing and Guangzhou in 2015 and 2015.
Specifically, it said it will continue to invest in its existing flagship store portfolio, with the complete modernisation of its flagship store on West Nanjing Road in Shanghai.
It said it will also invest in modernising its stores in Hong Kong and expand its Food store portfolio at convenient travel and city locations.
A Chinese government push to promote e-commerce has created a host of online retail rivals for Alibaba Group Holding and Amazon.com catering to shoppers' fears about the quality and safety of local everyday goods.
Encouraged by tax-relief programs and other policies that gained traction last year, logistics firms including SF Express and state-owned Sinotrans are seeking to grab a piece of the cross-border e-commerce market which the government estimates to be worth USD1 trillion by 2016.