Online sales are having a real impact in China, and while that is good for companies like Alibaba and JD.com, it is taking a toll on the brick and mortar retailers, along with the property market.
Bloomberg published an article that said that Chinese retailers are playing poker in empty malls, their customers have gone online.
JD.Com’s Liu started renting a booth in Zhongguancun in 1998 with an initial investment of 20,000 yuan.
Back then, China had 2.1 million users connected to the web via 747,000 computers, according to China Internet Network Information Center, the government body tasked with managing online resources. By the end of June 2014, the number of users had jumped to 632 million, with 83.4 percent of them able to access the Internet via smartphones.
JD.com’s Liu is now worth an estimated $7.3 billion, according to Bloomberg Billionaires.
“U.S. traditional retail networks are strong, but Chinese consumers long faced an archaic, inefficient brick-and-mortar network,” Josh Gartner, a Beijing-based spokesman for JD.com, said in a Feb. 3 phone interview. “Consumers flock to superior service.”
Alibaba has created 14 million jobs directly and indirectly, Ma said in an interview with Charlie Rose at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, last month. Ma is China’s wealthiest man and the world’s 13th richest person with an estimated $35 billion fortune.
Explaining his company’s sales growth versus traditional retailers, Ma said: “If you want to have 10,000 new customers, you have to build a new warehouse, this and that. For me, two servers.” He’s aiming for 2 billion customers around the world.
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