Chinese Alibaba has invested 500 million euro in a Chinese warehouse manager, Intime Retail, to bring the advantages of online shopping into physical stores.
Multiple investments in the IPO run-in
In exchange for the investment, Alibaba obtains a 26.1 % stake in the company, even though it will have to wait three years to actually get the shares. Both companies will create a joint-venture that will focus on the development of online-to-offline retail in shopping centres in an attempt to take advantage of the increased consumer use of smartphones.
Alibaba has invested quite a bit these past few months with 250 million euro for electronics producer Haier and 583 million euro for ChinaVision Media Group. Alibaba is close to an American IPO, which values the company at more than 100 billion euro and the IPO itself could generate 11 billion euro for Alibaba.