Global marketing news – 27 July 2015
Global logistics brand DHL eyes Chinese e-commerce growth
The international logistics company DHL has announced the opening of a new terminal in Shanghai, which forms an important part of its plan to expand its operations in China.
The Shanghai terminal is dedicated to Chinese e-commerce goods and will be the location where the goods are held before they are then shipped off around the world.
DHL hopes that the terminal will reduce transit times for manufacturers based in northern and eastern China by 3 days.
Several more drop-off centres will be built across China over the course of the year, with DHL explaining that products will be transported from these drop-off centres to the Shanghai terminal for global distribution.
With the e-commerce sector in China growing rapidly, DHL has said that it is “excited” by its expansion in the country. “The [Chinese e-commerce] trade volume in the first five months of 2015 is already equal to the whole of 2014,” explained a spokesperson from the company.
Naver adds 300 new locations to indoor maps service
The leading Korean search engine Naver will be providing indoor maps in over 300 new locations.
Naver launched its indoor maps service in 2012 and the new locations are predominantly transport and shopping centres.
The maps detail where particular shops, toilets and lifts are located, with some locations having 360° panoramic views.
Naver hopes that the new maps will help improve its online-to-offline services. With many people now using the internet to research products before buying them in a physical store, the aim is that the maps will help consumers find the shops they are looking for in the real world.
Walmart strengthens its position in India and China
The US retailer Walmart has strengthened its position in both the Indian and Chinese markets.
In India, it has extended its e-commerce site to members of all 20 “Best Price Wholesale” stores. Previously it had only been available to members of the Hyderabad and Lucknow stores.
On top of this online expansion, Walmart has also announced that it plans to build 500 new physical stores in the next 15 years.
Meanwhile in China, Walmart has gained complete ownership of the Chinese grocery e-commerce company Yihaodian after it bought the remaining 49% share of the company from its founders.
Walmart has said that the acquisition is part of its “long-term commitment to grow in China”.
With a combined population of around 2.5 billion people, China and India are key countries in the global e-commerce market.
MEIG to expand to Jordan and Lebanon
The e-commerce company Middle East Internet Group (MEIG) has said that it plans to expand into more Middle Eastern countries in the coming years.
It plans to launch in Jordan and Lebanon next year, and has also said it is considering launching in Iraq and Yemen once these regions stabilise.
MEIG, which owns beauty, real estate and motor vehicle e-commerce sites amongst others, has experienced stunning success, with revenues have gone up fourfold in the first seven months of this year alone.
The Middle East e-commerce market is one of the fastest growing in the world, and is predicted to reach a value of 15 billion US dollars this year.
Alibaba promotes sperm banks
And finally, visitors to Alibaba’s website may have seen a rather unusual promotion last week: sperm banks.
There are around 50 million infertile couples in China, and some sperm banks have been facing shortages in donations.
The Alibaba promotion encouraged men to sign up to become donors, with the sperm banks offering to pay donors 5,000 Yuan, equivalent to around 800 US dollars.
The promotion saw 22,000 men come forward as donors in just 3 days, with the majority of these coming from Shanghai, Beijing and Guangdong.
The Chinese authorities have stiff criteria over who can donate sperm, however, with high intelligence and attractive features being strongly desired traits. Only around 10% of men who offered to be donors in Shanxi province last year were accepted, for example.
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