Alibaba investing an additional $2bn in Lazada

Ann Santiago
March 20, 2018

Alibaba is increasing its control of Lazada, its e-commerce marketplace in Southeast Asia it acquired control of in 2016, after it injected another $2 billion into the business and replaced its CEO with a long-standing Alibaba executive.

For the record, Alibaba had invested almost Dollars 2 billion in Lazada Group during the last two years for acquiring a controlling stake in the firm. Lucy Peng, the CEO of Ant Financial, will apparently occupy the post of the chief executive at Lazada Group, while Bittner is expected to work as a senior advisor for the Singapore eCommerce firm. With it, Alibaba's stakes in Lazada increased from 51 percent to 83 percent.

The company did not disclose how its stake will change with the latest investment, but it's safe to say that Alibaba is gearing up for an intense battle in South East Asia, following Amazon's launch in Singapore and Shopee's recent expansion to win consumers. Peng is one of the 18 founders and a senior partner in the Alibaba Group.

Internet economy in the region is projected to grow to $200 billion by 2025, primarily driven by growth in e-commerce.

Lazada will now be further integrated into the Alibaba ecosystem. On Monday, Alibaba announced it would invest $2 billion in an online retailer. While Alibaba declined to give details of how much stake the company would have in Lazada after the latest investment, Bloomberg reports that in an emailed statement, Lucy said, "We feel very confident to double down on Southeast Asia.We are excited about the incredible opportunities for super-charged growth".

Launched in 2012 and headquartered in Singapore, Lazada is the leading online shopping and selling destination in Southeast Asia, with presence in Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam.

The China-based conglomerate now operates in more than 200 countries, recently putting down $20 million in Rent the Runway and beginning operations in its first Indonesia-based data center through its cloud computing arm, Alibaba Cloud.

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