Global Marketing News – 3rd July 2015
Alibaba launches 11 country-specific pavilions
Alibaba’s T-Mall Global platform has just launched 11 new country-specific “pavilions”, sections of its site devoted to selling foreign products to Chinese consumers.
The new pavilions are for the US, UK, Australia, New Zealand, France, Spain, Switzerland, Turkey, Thailand, Malaysia and Singapore.
Businesses from these countries will now be able to sell their products on the site, giving them access to the thriving Chinese ecommerce market and Chinese consumers hungry for foreign goods.
The Chinese cross-border ecommerce market is predicted to grow to over 200 million people in the next five years, when it is expected to be worth around 250 billion US dollars.
The latest pavilions follow the launch of the Korea pavilion in May, which was the first foreign pavilion to open on the site.
Alibaba has commented on the launch, saying: “The 11 pavilions launched today are the first fruit of this ongoing project to make global trade easier. Alibaba Group has signed agreements with various foreign countries to bring products from small and medium enterprises to the Chinese market.”
Baidu to invest billions in online-to-offline services
The Chinese search giant Baidu has said that it will be investing over 3 billion US dollars in online-to-offline services in the next 3 years.
Online-to-offline services are those which allow users to do a real-world activity online, such as taxi-hailing and ticket-booking apps.
The rise of online-to-offline services has been put down to the increasing penetration of smartphones in the Chinese market.
So far, however, Baidu has been trailing behind its rivals Tencent and Alibaba. The search giant hopes that this 3 billion dollar cash injection will give it the boost it needs in order to better compete in the online-to-offline arena.
CashKaro to collaborate with 50 global shopping sites
The Indian coupon and cashback website CashKaro.com is set to enter into collaborations with 50 global shopping sites within the next 6 months.
American and British retailers, such as Gap, Macy’s, River Island and House of Fraser are said to be amongst the sites due to join forces with CashKaro.
The company has said that it wants to cement its position as the leading coupon and cashback site in the Indian market.
CashKaro, which has around 500,000 registered members, has reported revenue growth of around 35% month-on-month.
Its main competitors in the Indian market are Cazbak and Pennyful.
Internet and mobile usage increasing in Venezuela
Internet and mobile penetration is growing steadily in Venezuela, according to CONATEL, the national telecoms authority in the country.
61% of Venezuelans now have internet access, equivalent to 16.3 million people, up by 24% on the previous year, when 13.2 million had internet access.
Mobile penetration is also on the rise, with 30 million people having a mobile phone in the country. 11.6 million of these mobile phones are smartphones, up 26% on last year when just 9.2 million Venezuelans had a smartphone.
This puts Venezuela ahead of both Peru and Chile for smartphone penetration in Latin America.
The majority of smartphones in the country are low-end models, however, with high-end brands such as Apple iPhones being beyond the price range of most Venezuelans.
Facebook opens first office in Africa
And finally, Facebook has opened an office in Johannesburg, South Africa – the first office the social networking giant has opened in the African continent.
120 million Africans currently use Facebook, and the social network wants to boost this number dramatically, saying that the continent is one of the key places that Facebook sees its “next billion users” coming from.
Only 1 in 5 Africans currently has access to the internet, but this number is expected to double in just the next 5 years.
The majority of Africans, some 80%, access the social network on a mobile device. To tackle this problem, Facebook recently launched its stripped-down Facebook Lite app, which takes up just 1 megabyte of space, significantly less than the average app size of 25 megabytes.
Facebook has said that its focus will be on the South African, Kenyan and Nigerian markets.
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