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Western Retailers Look At Ecommerce To Expand Business In China

October 27, 2013: 12:00 AM EST
Western retailers are increasingly adopting ecommerce to reach more consumers in China, following the footsteps of local online retailer Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. Despite the potential for success offered by ecommerce, many foreign companies, including eBay Inc., Google Inc., and Groupon Inc., have found the online business harder than it looks in China. Western retailers have to compete with local online giants and must find ways to deal with distribution-related difficulties in the country and Chinese online shoppers’ passion for low prices. All these issues notwithstanding, China’s ecommerce market, which overtook the U.S. in 2013 to become the world’s largest and is forecast to reach $540 billion by 2015, is simply too big to ignore. Consulting firm Bain & Co. says the online retail market in China has grown more than 70 percent annually since 2009, compared with the U.S. market’s 13 percent.
Kathy Chu, "Western Retailers See Online as Ticket to China", Wall Street Journal, October 27, 2013, © Dow Jones & Company, Inc.
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